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How Businesses are Using Gamification as a Hit Marketing Strategy

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6 months ago
6 months ago
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Good wine needs a good bottle. But good bottles and good wine don’t necessarily mean a lot in sales. Marketing, undoubtedly, is gaining ground and diversifying ways to reach audiences in innovative ways.

One such trend that has got everyone from Hong Kong to Sweden to Canada hooked is Marketing gamification. It is taking brand awareness to a whole new level by engaging the customers in interesting activities beyond the regular offers of BOGO and the likes.

What is Gamification strategy?

Gamification is basically throwing a ball that customers would chase for the sheer fun of it. It is a human focused design which delivers all the fun of games wrapped up in real-world, productive activities. There are many aspects of this strategy which play an important role in the success of any campaign, such as customer engagement, sense of achievement, competition, etc.

There are numerous examples around us: some of them are as mind blowing as the Magnum Pleasure Hunt, while some are as humble as the coupons campaign in your favourite café. The special discount you get for shopping for more than Rs. 5000 is the most common example. But there are out-of-the-world examples too, which have given brands an edge over their rivals and redefined customer engagement.

Games that got us hooked

1. Mc Donald’s Monopoly: McD made binge eating an engaging ritual by offering something more than delicious crispy patties and warm cheese- monopoly cards. Monopoly is a familiar game which brings back childhood memories for the players. Moreover, there is the sense of winning in terms of food items, cash and big prizes.

2. Coca Cola: Coca Cola has been known to create several engaging campaigns like ‘Unlock the 007 in you’ in London (in association with Skyfall) and ‘Chok Chok’ in Hong Kong. Both of these campaigns involved senses of development, accomplishment, ownership and possession.

3. Starbucks Rewards: Admit it- there have been days when you just walked into Starbucks to get that final star on your card!

4. Complete LinkedIn profiles: Majority of LinkedIn’s features are gamified. This is quite subtle and most people won’t even relate the simple elements such as profile progress as a part of gamification. However, when you think about it, completing LinkedIn profile information by adding images and more details engages the users in a way quite similar to the Starbucks rewards.

Honourable Mentions

  • Nike+ nFuelband
  • Magnum Pleasure Hunt
  • Samsung S7 Stare
  • Make your own meal 4Food
  • Pink Nation App by Victoria’s Secret
  • Glass of Bubbly
  • Contrex Water Surprise

The Perfect Game

So what set these campaigns aside from others in the race? What makes them successful in terms of customer engagement and brand marketing? The answer lies in 8 core drives which are found to successfully stimulate people in order to engage with your campaign.

These form the Octalysis Gamification Model which includes:

  1. Epic meaning and calling;
  2. Development and accomplishment;
  3. Empowerment of creativity and feedback;
  4. Ownership and possession;
  5. Social influence and relatedness;
  6. Scarcity and Impatience;
  7. Unpredictability and curiosity;
  8. Loss and avoidance

What good is throwing a ball when people won’t chase it?

All of these remarkable gamified marketing strategies combine two or more of the 8 core drives in order to acquire new customers and retain old ones. But the popularity of application of game mechanics to engage, entertain and educate is not limited to these industries- only because it works wonders. The simplest forms of gamification around us are loyalty programs, leaderboards and streak scores of Snapchat, and even featured stories on Maggi packages.

By Saumya

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