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The Manaverse Podcast is a podcast created for you, the gamer with aspirations of building your own local game store (LGS), the entrepreneur running an LGS who wants to grow their business, and the player who wants a behind the scenes look into their favourite hobby. If you’re looking for inspiration, new ideas, and interesting perspectives then Tom Traplin has you covered. Learn the business of selling some of the best games in the world including Mtg, Warhammer, Warmachine, Dungeons and Dr ...
 
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We're going across the pond to talk to Patrick ten Hoorn, the owner of Spellenhuis in the Netherlands! Patrick talks about his journey of taking his dream to open a stylish game cafe and turning it into a reality, navigating the choppy waters of the hobby industry, and how he grew the business into multiple locations. Links https://www.spellenhuis.…
 
Today we're talking with Pat Fuge. Pat is the Head Gnome of Gnome Games, Wisconsin’s Family Game store, with locations across the Fox Valley for customers to shop and play in. Pat talks about the early days of Gnome Games and how his approach to planning has helped expand to multiple locations and even venture into the world of gaming cafes. Links …
 
Today we're talking with Rob Gruber, aka The Elf King. Rob is the owner of Good Times Games in Prince Rupert, British Columbia and he's built an incredible business by becoming somewhat of a local celebrity and personality. Rob plays the game store game a little bit differently and today we're going to talk about his approach to working within a sm…
 
Here's what we know If you've been active in the game store owner groups on Facebook you've probably seen the posts recently about game stores and publishers being targeted by a law firm in New York and being sued for lack of ADA compliance. So far they've sued Crafty Games of Washington, Games of Berkeley in California, Black Rowan Games in Tracy,…
 
New round table episode! Wizard's new $999 Beta booster pack product, The future of the friendly local game store, Are game cafes the natural evolution of the FLGS? What separates good retail from bad, And more. Matthew Vercant and Pat Fuge join me to discuss the future of the friendly local game store and speculate on the future of Magic: the Gath…
 
Today we're talking with Jason Garvin. Jason is the manager of Total Escape Games, a premium retailer of tabletop games, carrying a vast array of role-playing games, card games, miniatures games, board games, and more in Broomfield Colorado. Jason is going to give us some insight into the origins of the store, dealing with the day to day operations…
 
Hey, welcome back to the Manaverse Podcast! I'm your host Tom Traplin and this is the podcast where we explore what it takes to build a successful friendly local game store. Before we jump into things, Q4 is coming and I'm looking for more game store owners to feature on the podcast, so if you get an email or phone call from me in the near future d…
 
Jake Tanner is the owner Unplugged Gaming in Manlius New York. Jake came into the tabletop gaming business from a different angle than most of the game store owners that have been featured on the podcast. Before launching Unplugged Gaming, Jake, along with his business partner, owned and operated a highly lauded digital marketing firm called Digita…
 
For most game store owners, SEO is techno jargon. Something that only the biggest ecommerce businesses need to think about. I've also heard variations of the sentiment that it’s impossible to compete with the big players like BGG and Amazon in the search engines. That’s only half true. SEO definitely sounds like the kind of techno jargon you'd hear…
 
Dustin is the owner and founder of Board Gaming with Education and BGE Tabletop. He has experience teaching English as a second language to a variety of age levels – from kindergarten to university. He also works in the field of education in various capacities. BGE started off as podcast in 2017 and has expanded into a platform for educators to lea…
 
Happy New Year everyone! I hope you had a great time celebrating the arrival of 2022. One of the things I like to do at the beginning of the year is to look back a bit and see what happened over the past 12 months and establish a bit of a theme for the coming year. So that's what we're doing today. Let's discuss three of the biggest lessons I learn…
 
This is the second podcast in a series that I'm calling Launch Lessons, where I'll be breaking down the Six Pillars of Digital Marketing and show you just how powerful and important they are to your business's growth. If you haven't listened to the last episode on how much your email list is worth, go back and check that one out. Today we're talkin…
 
In the spirit of giving value up front, this is the first podcast in a series that I'm calling Launch Lessons, where I'll be breaking down the Six Pillars of Digital Marketing and show you just how powerful and important they are to your business's growth. First up, we're talking about one of my favourite topics and one area of marketing that almos…
 
If you're a game store owner, you're ridiculously busy most of the time. You've got inventory to manage, events to organize, people to hire, and a million products to stay on top of. It's a lot to handle... and marketing your game store often becomes an afterthought. Something that always gets pushed onto the back burner. And it doesn't matter what…
 
Today we are talking with Alex Thor and Jonathan Adams. Alex is the Director of Operations at RPG Travel and Jonathan is their resident gaming master. Both of these fine gentlemen were featured at the recent 2021 LGS Success Summit and today we are going to explore what RPG Travel is, how it works, and how you, dear listener, as a game store owner …
 
Athena Games in Norwich, UK In today's episode of the Manaverse Podcast, we're talking with Jamie Grinstead from Athena Games. Athena Games is Norwich's premier tabletop game destination for gamers of all sorts and we dive into their origin story, what sets them apart, and how they have navigated the changing digital landscape over the last two yea…
 
Let's have a quick chat about the allocation situation and how distribution can help support game stores that spend years building the communities that create the demand for the products in the first place. Grab your ticket to the LGS Success Summit >> https://lgssuccesssummit.com Follow Dave Salisbury on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/dave.sali…
 
Jess Carrier is the featured guest on the Manaverse Podcast today. Jess is the Head of Marketing and Events at Noble Knight Games in Wisconsin and we're going to dig into my favourite topic, which as you probably know by now, is marketing. We're going to discuss her experience jumping in as the head of marketing at Noble Knight, some of the trends …
 
The 2nd LGS Success Summit is scheduled for September 7th to 9th, 2021 and we're going bigger and better for this one. Just like last time, this summit is a virtual event so you don't have to worry about spending thousands of dollars on airfare and travel and accommodations and food. You can attend the summit and listen to the expert speakers from …
 
Does Your Game Store Need an SEO Specialist? If you've been in business for any length of time you've probably been pitched SEO services at least a few times by people promising to get you on page 1 of Google. That sounds pretty good right? The trouble is hiring someone for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) can be very hit or miss. Some people are g…
 
In today's episode we are going straight to the source and exploring what makes the WPN program tick, how to achieve that coveted Premium status for your game store, and how to make the most it. Luke May is the Retail Experience Specialist for Wizards of the Coast in the UK and Nelson Brown is the Wizards Play Network Community Manager in Seattle, …
 
Curt Covert is the founder, creative force and jack-of-all-trades at Smirk & Dagger. He’s worn all the hats including art director, copywriter, marketer and concept director, and in a past life he was also a creative director and marketing planner for promotion agencies servicing Fortune 500 companies and brands like M&Ms, Jameson, Dannon, Unilever…
 
On May 13th, 2021, Wizards of the Coast announced plans to move away from it's current iteration of Organized Play and phase out the MPL and Rivals leagues. The 2021-2022 season will be the final season of Wizard's foray into e-sports in it's current form, and it looks like they will be refocusing on in-person and local level play more closely in t…
 
Molly Zeff, the cofounder of Flying Leap Games is on the Manaverse Podcast to talk about getting into the game publishing business and what she learned by visiting over 250 game stores all over the world. If you're interested in discovering how to get your game published, Molly shares a number of valuable lessons on how to take a game from concept …
 
Jouni Jussilla is on the Manaverse Podcast to talk about Dized, a digital companion designed to be used next to physical tabletop games. We all know that one of the biggest obstacles to picking up a new game is learning the rules, which is why we often refer to our friends to teach us. It creates a much better learning experience and gets us into t…
 
GAMA EXPO 2021 has come and gone so let's talk about what went well and what could be improved on. Today, I'm breaking down my experience with the Expo and some of the difficulties I ran into while registering for the event, as well as talking about some of the advantages of the Spatial Chat system and how it can be made even better for next years …
 
If you’ve been open for any length of time in this business you’ve probably run into someone who thinks they deserve a special deal. Maybe they’ve been a long time customer, maybe they’ve just rolled in off the street and feel like you owe them cheaper prices. At the moment of this recording there is a surge of speculation in the Pokémon market wit…
 
Devon Chulick is the Founder and COO of Start Playing Games, a service that helps connect tabletop RPG gamers and professional game masters together to create amazing gaming experiences. Devon has been involved in the eCommerce industry for over a decade with a number of businesses under his belt. He enjoys reading, volleyball, pizza, and Dungeons …
 
Steve Port joins me on the podcast to discuss his latest project, Melee.gg and the future of Magic tournaments, online and offline. Learn how Melee.gg can allow your game store to run Magic tournaments more efficiently than ever, both in store and on Magic: Arena. Find out how the platform works, how you can run events with minimal staffing and sti…
 
Join me as I tell the story of interviewing for the position of marketing manager for Star City Games and my plan for improving the marketing strategy of one of the biggest Magic: the Gathering businesses in the world. Resources Mentioned semrush.com analytics.google.com mailchimp.com activecampaign.com Get your FREE ticket for the LGS Success Summ…
 
Brenda and Paraic Mulgrew are the owners of the incredibly thematic Knight Watch Games in San Antonio. Knight Watch Games is a full service gaming center that specializes in board games, card games, miniatures, and role-playing and is beautifully decked out in Medieval fantasy decor. To quote one of their customers: THE OWNERS AND STAFF HAVE CULTIV…
 
Kylie Prymus has been the owner of Games Unlimited in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania since 2015 but Games Unlimited is one of the original founding game stores in North America. Opening their doors for the first time in 1979, Games Unlimited has been serving the Pittsburgh community for decades, bringing people and games together the whole time. With a s…
 
Shannon Ebbitt is the co-owner with husband Vince, of the Mana Boardgame Tavern in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, a steampunk inspired venue offering a variety of adult beverages combined with a library of board games for their patrons to enjoy. The Mana Boardgame Tavern was conceived with the idea of bringing great games, great drinks, and great people,…
 
Wizards of the Coast made an announcement recently on the WPN site detailing the changes to the program and what it takes for local game stores to qualify for WPN Premium status. So let's dig into the announcement and talk about the three major changes to the program and some options for game store owners looking to become Premium. https://wpn.wiza…
 
If you're in the planning stages of your future game store or were about to launch, you should put everything on hiatus right now. Hold off on opening your doors or making any major purchases in the near future because the circumstances in which you would be operating are changing, almost by the day. If you went through the effort of putting togeth…
 
The situation is changing day by day and for many game store owners, business is anything but the usual. Social distancing and isolation have made the traditional model for local game stores unfeasible if not impossible. Hosting events is no longer an option and likely won't be a long time. And for the stores in regions that are particular hard hit…
 
Joe Masilotti is on the show to talk about how WeTabletop can help game store owners get in front of more customers and fill up their events more consistently. WeTabletop allows players looking for games to connect with store owners hosting those games, and they're not just restricted to the usual suspects. Players can find nearly any table top gam…
 
Is coronavirus worse than the flu? At this point it doesn't matter, the panic and fear is real. Governments are taking this seriously. Coronavirus is going to affect all retail but game stores are a unique business model and are very focused on face to face interaction. So what do local game store owners need to be concerned with over the coming we…
 
For those who haven’t heard the tale, Pat’s Games was robbed a little over three years ago and the bad guys made off with over $60,000 worth of high value Magic cards. The story of the burglary went far and … Read More The post MVP083: Justice Has Been Served appeared first on Manaverse Saga.By Tom Traplin: Online Entrepreneur
 
Since the day I started the Manaverse Podcast I've wanted to interview certain people in particular. John Coviello and Gordan Johansen were high on my list, as well as Pat Johnson and Kelly Ackerman, KYT, Derium's, Card Kingdom, and many, … Read More The post MVP082: Pete Hoefling on Star City Games appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
Over the course of the last year, Chatbots have been making a lot of noise in the industry. They are either the cutting edge in marketing technology, poised to change the way people interact with businesses, or they're a fad … Read More The post MVP081: Chatbots: What They Are And Why You Should Care appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
Gordon Johansen is back on the Manaverse Podcast along with John Coviello and Wayne Mittlesteadt to talk about holiday sales and driving big numbers during the holiday season. Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and the Christmas season are the … Read More The post MVP080: How Gordon Johansen Sold $36,000 Worth Of Product In One Day appeared fir…
 
2018 has been an interesting year for the games industry. We've seen a glut of excellent board games hit the market and more mainstream adoption of the gaming hobby by the 'mundanes' as John Coviello would say, but we've also … Read More The post MVP079: The State Of The Games Industry appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
The days of Magic Online are numbered, at least in its current form. The question we explore today is "Will Wizard's of the Coast shut down Magic Online?" and how will this affect local game store owners. The short answer … Read More The post MVP078: The Death Of Magic Online appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
In this super short episode of the Manaverse Podcast, we ask the question "are you focusing on the right things?" Specifically, are you building a business, or are you building a community? I'm going to give away the plot on … Read More The post MVP077: Are Your Building A Business Or Are You Building A Community appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
Matthew Vercant has worked for three game stores, done shipping fulfillment for various Kickstarters, managed shipping for Minion Games, and now owns Just Games Rochester. His background before entering the games industry was in publishing and teaching. He also just … Read More The post MVP076: Marketing Strategies That Drive Sales appeared first o…
 
Do you know what it takes to start a movement in your local game community? That's the essence of this episode of the Manaverse Podcast. Darcy and Daniel Leech, the owners of Mind Sculpt Games in Great Bend, Kansas, have … Read More The post MVP075: Starting A Movement appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
Sometimes you reach a point in your business where you begin to question whether or not the whole endeavor is worth the effort. You face a crossroads where you can either choose to quit and walk away, or push through … Read More The post MVP074: When To Give Up And When To Push Through appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
The first episode of the Round Table is back after 8 months. The whole gang returns to discuss the recent developments in the industry including the rise of D&D. Roleplaying popularity is surging and for the guys, driving sales in … Read More The post MVP073: Round Table – The Rise Of D&D And The Impending Doom Of Magic appeared first on Manaverse …
 
Everyone gets burnt out every once in a while. The question is what to do about it when it happens. Even gaming can become exhausting and stressful once you make it your profession, and that's the path a game store … Read More The post MVP072: The Gamer’s Paradox And Dealing With Burnout appeared first on Manaverse Saga.…
 
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