Today is International Women's Day and to mark the occasion, we have decided to highlight some of the incredible women working in the games industry
Rosemary Buahin, the marketing director over at London-based indie publisher Curve Digital, tells us what perceptions we need to change about women in games and what advice she has for those looking to break into the industry
Can you tell us about your current role and what it entails?
Marketing director at Curve Digital so I’m responsible for defining and executing the strategic marketing plans for our awesome titles, working closely with our talented dev partners and key commercial stakeholders. I’m also responsible for a pretty cool marketing team comprising of product managers, social media managers and digital content executives.
What did you study (if anything) that helped you get into games? What courses would you advise for aspiring professionals interested in your areas of expertise?
I studied Marketing and Psychology at university which helped mould my professional career path into the games publishing world, but this isn’t the only way to break into the industry and is often an unfair assumption. A genuine passion for games and entertainment can fuel your career path whether your core skills lie in marketing, creative, social media; UI/UX, design, development, programming, animation etc. The key is to try and secure valid training through apprenticeships and work experience programmes such as Into Games, a great non-profit organisation that provides support and mentorship for those seeking to work in games
Where did you get your start in games and how did you progress into what you're doing now? Is this something you ever imagined yourself doing?
After uni, I got a temp role as an export sales coordinator at Eidos Interactive which was awesome as I already lived in LAN cafés as a PC gamer - Generation Z have it so easy now! From there I got a job as a national sales manager at Novolagic but wanted to utilise more of my marketing degree so joined PlayStation as the UK trade marketing manager. After a few years, Warner Bros opened their new video games division so I joined the new team as the head of trade marketing. I was lured back to PlayStation after a few years and headed the trade marketing team there. After some time traveling, I joined Curve.
What part of your role do you find most fulfilling?
Definitely the execution and subsequent results. There’s nothing better than seeing your target audience appreciate and engage with content that you’ve worked so hard to develop and deliver. It’s also satisfying for the devs to see a title that they’ve nurtured for (sometimes) years, finally come to fruition.
Do you think there are any misconceptions, public or professional, surrounding your area of expertise?
Yes, that women have inferior knowledge about gaming; do not play games and are only a commercially viable audience if targeting gifters or pester power household purchasing influencers.
Is there anything about the job/industry you wish you would have known when first joining?
That my alcohol consumption would increase substantially
What other advice do you have for someone looking for a job in this profession?
Be a sponge and take every opportunity to learn. Keep up to date with digital trends and initiatives and be open to adopting new strategic approaches. Don’t be afraid to take risks and create a bit of mayhem if it leads to an amazing idea or piece of content.
Immerse yourself in the gaming industry and perfect your trade; subscribe to the trade media outlets, community forums etc and learn what they have to say about the industry. Most importantly, treat everyone that you work with, with the utmost respect regardless of their rank in your organisation. The games industry is quite incestuous so today’s PM could be tomorrow’s MD. Don't burn bridges as it’s so incestuous.
Is there anyone in the games industry (or anyone else in general) who inspires you?
It's a cliché, but my Mum. My first badass female role model who worked hard and sacrificed loads to make an imprint in the world