Meet Jeff Braddock: Winner of August's Player Insights Champion Award
The Affogata Player Insights Awards cast a spotlight on individuals who truly embrace the power of player feedback and data-driven methods to elevate their games. They deeply understand the value of listening to their players and actively involving them in the game development and optimization process.
For that reason, we are happy to announce Jeff Braddock, the Global Community Manager of skate. at EA, as the winner of the August's Player Insights Champion Awards!
🎉 Way to go, Jeff! 🎉We had a quick chat with him to give you a better understanding of his work and background. Here's what he had to say.
We started off by asking him to describe his job and what his day-to-day looks like:
Fairly busy. Managing the global community for the skate. franchise as we continue developing the game with Full Circle, sharing progress with the community, planning for external playtests, coordinating with our UXR teams and studio leads on council sessions for direct feedback, creating and refining the community engagement strategy for skate. and helping lead our global Discord strategy for EA titles.
We continued asking Jeff how long has he been working on the player-facing field and what he likes about it:
I started at EA on Oct 7, 2010 as a Tier 1 phone support agent, so I’ve always been on the frontlines. I’ve have the privilege of helping pilot multiple programs over the years such as escalated chat, social support, the roll-out and launch of Answers HQ – our community support forum – and in 2015 (2 months after I got married), I was brought on as the North American Community Manager for the Battlefield franchise. After 5 years, I moved off Battlefield and worked on some partner titles, then was brought onto to lead community for skate. and help build up our Discord processes.
Then, we asked him if there are any other professionals he particularly admires or learns from and who they are:
Dan Mitre was my first manager when I transitioned into community management, and a great friend. His drive, dedication to excellence, and putting players first helped build a solid foundation for my career path. He’s leading community at Ubisoft now. Jesse Anderson was a great mentor and teacher who helped me identify what direction I wanted my career path to take. He’s now rockin’ it at Nintendo. John Lunasco and I met by chance, but we’ve become fast friends and lean on each other by sharing our experiences, helping each other see different perspectives, and he’s my grill buddy – we love cooking on open flames, smoking meats, and sharing recipes.
Next, we wanted to hear what's the importance of player feedback in Jeff's role:
Player Feedback is the priority of my role – if we don’t know what our players are saying, we can’t advocate for them. When Rinzler turned back into TRON in TRON: Legacy, he put into words what my motto is every day: I fight for the users.
We then asked Jeff why he needs a tool like Affogata:
To identify datapoints for engagement, sentiment, and conversation topics to drive better community interaction and growth.
And what was the situation before they started using the tool?
Honestly, the previous platform that was used to analyze engagement and sentiment was bought out and then functionality was severely limited/reduced. Affogata provides the needed data and integrates with Discord well.
How does it help the team reach the goal or solve the problem?
Thus far, it’s been instrumental in providing reporting metrics that our various stakeholders can use to show growth, engagement, sentiment, and hot topics in the community, which helps drive our strategy and identify opportunities to pivot or move the campaign.
How do you measure success in your role?
For me, success hinges on a happy, engaged community that is growing.
Beyond securing a lasting place in Affogata's Player Insights Champion Awards hall of fame, you might be curious about the prize. We aimed for a meaningful and lasting reward, so we planted 100 trees 🌲 in Jeff's name and sent a certificate to showcase how his efforts are making an eco-friendly impact.
Thank you, Jeff, and congratulations! Your work is an inspiration to us and many other professionals out there💫.