If you’re in a startup, the idea of pursuing a “side project” may seem like a bit of a joke. The standard ethos from Silicon Valley to Tel Aviv is that if you’re not living, breathing and bleeding your core product, you’re doing something wrong. And besides, who has the time? But there is a difference between a “side project” as stereotyped by the unrelated passion project stowed away in the desk drawer until it magically becomes your main focus, and the new phenomenon of “side project marketing,” wherein a company’s side project can actually create real and lasting value for your core business, all by creating something of real value for others. [An] example is Checkmarx, a cyber security company that launched an addictive yet useful mini-game called “Game of Hacks” which tests coders ability to spot vulnerabilities in code, helping them to learn along the way. The game received massive positive press coverage, had over 35,000 players in the first 24 hours (it’s 80,000 now), and drew thousands of visitors to the Checkmarx website. Many of those visitors were quality leads which have turned into real customers. And now the team is working on productizing an enterprise version of the game. Read the full article on The Next Web.