30 Jul How to implement gamification in a marketing strategy to build brand awareness and grow your business.
When world-famous American Rapper, Jay Z released his memoir, ‘Decoded’ in 2010, he well and truly put the concept of gamification on the marketing map.
Sidestepping the run-of-the-mill marketing campaign and subsequent book launch, Jay-Z’s multi-million-dollar publishers preceded the campaign by hiding the content of all 320 pages of the book across 13 cities in America.
Participants could find full pages printed on food wrappers, on cars, and plastered across buildings. Contestants who found the pages from clues released on Jay-Z’s social media pages were then instructed to unlock the rest of the pages through up-and-coming search engine ‘Bing.com’ to be in with a chance to read the book before its release date.
This unique marketing partnership between Jay-Z and Bing gave entrants a chance to play an interactive game where they could win once-in-a-lifetime prizes, plus it capitalised on the services offered by Bing to increase their exposure for the period of the campaign.
Bing received a new audience, Jay-Z stirred interest in his book from those who may never have had the want or desire to read it and the lucrative partnership became an innovative example of gamification at its most exceptional.
Gamification What Is It?
Gamification is the simple process of using gaming in an already existing business model to drive results, increase customer retention and build brand loyalty.
Put simply; gamification is the use of gaming in a non-gaming context.
Gamification is becoming increasingly popular in marketing campaigns across the world as a unique strategy to spark interest and awareness in products and build relationships with those who may otherwise never have stumbled across your brand.
While gaming may once have only been considered a hobby for pre-pubescent boys, research now reveals that gaming appeals to both genders across a wide range of ages and diverse demographics.
Get a gamification strategy right, and you have untapped potential to reach prospective clients across the globe easily and in a way that they’ll enjoy, suggesting why marketers are using this growing trend in their droves.
How integrating Gamification into your marketing appeals to the consumer
Gamification offers your potential client something in return and enhances their experience with your brand from the outset.
Participants will get the chance to win a prize, improve skills in specific areas, indulge in a form of escapism, reach a sense of accomplishment and form connection with others. All well-known key strategies required to help a company build its brand.
As technology becomes more sophisticated and the world becomes more accessible, according to Markets and Markets.com, by 2020, gamification is expected to grow into a USD 11.1 billion industry.
Gamification isn’t a new concept, but it’s becoming well-placed as a significant marketing trend of the future and has been identified as the best way to create engagement and build relationships outside of the confines of your traditional marketing methods.
While this is all positive for marketers across the globe, if you haven’t yet considered gamification as part of your marketing strategy, it’s certainly not as simple as designing a concept for a game and launching.
Gamification is more than just a marketing gimmick, it’s here to stay, and here are some things to consider before implementing your strategy to help gamification achieve solid marketing results, whatever your goals
- Set clear intentions
While adding some form of on or offline game to your marketing plan might seem like a fun and exciting way to create a point of difference from your competitors, you need to set clear intentions from the outset.
- Do you want them to share your message across their social channels, invite their friends to play, hand over their email address to build your list, or enter into a long and permanent relationship with you?
- How do you intend to achieve your goals?
- What is the short and long-term impact of your game?
There’s little point investing time and budget into providing an interactive experience that doesn’t help you meet your broader company objectives, and you need to make sure that each player understands how they can come along on the journey with you.
- Implement a fluid strategy
As with any results-driven campaign, you must give your gamification strategy room for movement. If you’re not getting the desired results or your gamification provides no benefit to your business, be prepared to move the goalposts, make changes and set new targets or guidelines.
You’ll need to utilise analytics to make sure you stay on track with your goals and help you see where you need to adapt your strategy to make changes for future.
- Define your target audience
Your target audience is one of the most pivotal factors to consider when designing your gamification strategy. There’s no point implementing a strategy that appeals to teenage boys if your target market likes to take long walks on the beach, indulge in designer shopping or is a fine foods connoisseur.
If you have specific age or location demographics, design gaming styles and prize incentives that will appeal to them. This research may take on a whole new depth to what you’re used to, but it’s necessary if your gamification strategy is to be a success.
If you don’t define your target audience, you’ll confuse your audience which may tarnish your brand and will undoubtedly impact your sales.
- Set appropriate prizes
While physical prizes aren’t always essential in gamification, some form of incentive is. Whether this is a collection of gold tokens, a points system in the way of money or flowers, or any rating that appeals to your audience; their reward and their desire to achieve it will form the basis of the success of your gamification strategy.
- Keep things simple
Gamification as part of your marketing strategy is a chance for you and your team to get creative which shouldn’t be overlooked. But, remember that the point of gamification is wider than helping someone pass the time or provide short-term pleasure by playing a game so don’t overcomplicate things.
Their focus shouldn’t be on the rules of how to play, it shouldn’t confuse your audience, and it shouldn’t require a complex range of materials to be played. You need to focus on the most effective way to get a gamer involved with your brand quickly and easily.
Keep things short, sweet and simple to keep users engaged for longer and encourage them to share your platform.
- Set a timeline
There’s no point continuing with gamification if it’s not getting results. Set a timeline to achieve your desired results and make sure you stick to these to ensure that your gamification strategy is providing the best return on your investment.
There’s no doubt that gamification should be researched as an effective marketing strategy that will help build your brand and will lead to sales to help grow your business. Implement these simple steps to give your gamification strategy the best possible chance of success.
If you are looking to implement Gamification into your marketing strategy contact a professional agency such as Media Shark Today.