UPDATE: July 5th 2019
In a context where taking the digital turn has become unavoidable, digitalization allows yes, a diversification of channels, but also leads to an exponential increase in the number of competitors in all industries.
So then, what can you do as a company or retail chain to stand out from the crowd? How can you capture the interest of consumers in such an oversaturated environment? Gamification could be the solution for you!
What is it?
Gamification refers to a marketing approach that incorporates a game item in a context that is not necessarily playful at first, in order to make a product or service more attractive, fun and motivating. The idea is to use people’s predisposition to want to participate in a game in order to have them partake in a desired action. This may be to provide their information, to purchase a product or even collaborate on a project. For example, asking customers to register for a rewards card in exchange for a discounted or free product at the time of the transaction. There is a reward for an action, but what’s more is that there are more rewards to come down the road from the card itself.
Most major brands adopt gamification as the basis of their strategy to build their marketing campaign. In fact, gamification, if properly applied, is very effective and improves the performance of campaigns at all levels of the user journey.
The universal aspect of the game makes it possible to multiply the fields of application. We find the game in learning contexts, projects, referral or loyalty programs, etc.
There are also many ideas and options for gamification. Whether it’s a distribution of reward points with an fun interactive draw, a basic game, or other idea, the success of gamification still lies in the enticing opportunity you create that draws people in to interact with your scenario. Indeed, the main goal of including gamification in your customer journey is to drive engagement and improve the user experience.
As such, it is also very important to understand your target audience. You must first know their interests and the type of game that would entice them to want to interact with you.
The benefits of gamification
First, the digital marketing gamification brings a new dimension that opens us to other perspectives. This is an already very busy subject, but each company has its own way of implementing it. Because to make a simple and non-fun action more fun can be done in so many different ways!
Then, in 2019, what matters is engagement. On almost all platforms, the more people interact positively with your brand, the more it is put forward. This is the case on your social media, on your website for search engines, and even your e-mails! That’s why adopting gamification in your marketing strategy can help you stand out but above all increase your engagement and visibility at the same time.
Finally, gamification is a great way to collect data continuously. Indeed, all kinds of quizzes are a very effective way to get new data about your users allowing you to learn more about them. You can then use this data to improve the segmentation and customization of your next campaigns. This results in increased performance, as your campaigns will be more focused and therefore more relevant. You will finally be able to more easily engage with your users and therefore better maintain the relationship you have with them.
Why does it works?
Integrating the game into certain processes meets some needs of the players:
- The need for recognition
- Rewards, success badges and others are the number one pillar of people’s commitment to your game. Comparing with others allows everyone to increase their self-esteem and pride. It also allows them to better situate themselves in your user journey. Know what we have accomplished and what we have to do to be on top.
- The social aspect
- Integrating the game is a way to bring all your users together for the same purpose. Any self-respecting game brings people together and should therefore incorporate notions of sharing, community, referral, comparison, etc. Because playing without competition is much less motivating!
The 3 Keys to Success
Your plan is not just to entertain your customers, so know what process you want to optimize to encourage more interaction. Then, define what behavior you want your users to adopt and adapt your next actions to this goal.
- Know what pleases your audience
Each person has a different set of behaviors, want and needs. It is therefore essential to know your users well to be able to identify their motivation, their preferred style of play and their brakes to the game. Thus, you will be able to develop a scenario that fits them better and that will have a meaning for your target. You can better engage them and ultimately, retain them.
Motivation to participate in something often comes from the associated or anticipated reward. If your program offers relevant rewards in addition to having a fun side, you have a better chance for success.
Since costs can be high, it is essential to properly measure the results of your campaign, and then, calculate your ROI.
Determine indicators beforehand, which will allow you to analyze your results. This will also allow you to better know your users and adapt to them. Because often, the idea we have of our users’ preferences may be completely different from reality.
The musts of gamification
For your game to work, it must first be original. It must stand out so that people want to play it. It must also be in line with your positioning and your brand image. We must see a continuity to not confuse your users.
Then your game must spark interactions. It must engage the dialogue with your prospects and customers. In fact, the goal of creating a game instead of a simple form (for example), is to increase the engagement to your brand. In fact, it should be your watchword: interaction.
Then, your game should serve to enhance the customer experience by placing the user at the center of your strategy. By doing this, you will be able to gather a lot more information about each of them, and thus offer an unparalleled one-to-one experience.
With this in mind, we must find 3 essential elements in the game:
- The player must have a real-time view of his progress in the game
- A motivating challenge to make people want to earn as many points as possible
- A physical or virtual reward
Once you establish your gaming scenario, consider tying in an email campaign to support the idea. Send the next stages of the conquest, the results of the week, the next rewards level or any other relevant information associated with the game to your contacts. If your database is structured well, you can keep track of your customer’s actions and/or transactions to set up corresponding reminders or specific actions.
It is now time for you to play!