4 top tips to make a gamification strategy work

by Alistair Gray on 7 July 2011

Games are an integral part of our day to day lives, on our phones, our computers…  everyone has access and everyone plays games. This has led a new marketing strategy to emerge, gamification. It’s unsurprising really as this type of interaction fits with our natural instincts and behaviours as human beings – everyone likes to play. The level of engagement a customer will have with a brand through game-like interaction is significant and businesses are starting to take advantage of new technologies to utilise gamification for building brand loyalty. A great idea, if you get it right (Foursquare, for instance, is an example of gamification success)

However, before you delve into designing the levels, badges, achievements and leader boards there are 4 key things which should be considered to ensure that a gamification strategy succeeds:

  1. Targeting.You need to consider very carefully who the audience is and set concise objectives for what you want to achieve. Get to know your users and build the game experience around them.
  2. Level of challenge. Playing games is natural, but carefully consider the level of challenge and ensure that the game is tough enough to get into it but achievable so all of the brand messages are delivered.
  3. Collaboration. Introduce a social aspect where your users need to interact to complete levels, not only does this fit with our social appetites but a healthy dose of competition/cooperation is likely to increase engagement.
  4. Storytelling. All games have a story, which you learn and become a part of as you proceed through the levels. Game based features should do the same, the journey of the game is important and will ensure the customer feels a sense of connection, both with the game and ultimately with the brand.

Gamification as a marketing strategy is still in its infancy, but with advancements of technology and the continued growth of digital there is much more innovation to come, and I am really looking forward to seeing what happens next.

This is just a quick guide to getting gamification right, there is further discussion around the above points in our article on Fresh Business Thinking.com ‘Gamification – encouraging a unique user experience’.

What are your experiences with gamification? Let us know by leaving a comment below…

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