Gamification, the use of game elements to promote desired behaviours among customers and employees, has been a popular business strategy for decades.
But the always-on digital and smartphone age has vastly expanded opportunities for gamification, and now it’s used in digital services and apps across categories, including fitness, e-commerce and traffic.
The market for gamification apps and services will reach about half a billion dollars this year, according to M2, and rise to $US2.8 billion by 2016. But many gamification apps will fail to catch on. Those that thrive won’t rely on ephemeral badges and rewards to keep users engaged. Gamified experiences must add real value to the user’s experience, or they will fail to take hold.
In a recent report from BI Intelligence we distill the key elements that will make mobile gamification services effective. We analyse the elements that are critical to a winning gamification strategy, look at the various typology of mobile gamification uses, and detail how to quantify the impact of gamification tactics.
Here’s are the key elements to a winning gamification strategy:
- Intuitive design: Think simple, elegant, capable, and seamless. Gamification should clearly connect effort with reward. It should not be overly confusing, complex, or arduous. This is particularly so on mobile. Small devices and impatient users means there’s no margin for interface or design errors.
- Behavioural sensitivity: Gamification should not disrupt worker or consumer routines, but grow naturally out of existing behaviour. Commerce gamification can nudge habitual shoppers toward stores, but retailers shouldn’t bother with trying to persuade occasional customers with gamification. Likewise, an employee productivity game shouldn’t contain unwieldy systems that require employees to register their habits.
- Balanced design: Foursquare’s early experiments with gamification ran out of steam because of the relentless focus on one-upsmanship. People grew weary of competing with strangers and friends for mayorships, and chasing badges. Gamification must blend in collaboration, meaningful rewards, variety, and elements of randomness to keep users hooked.
- Alignment: Gamification must support business objectives. Gamification that is clearly “tacked on” to a product and feels flimsy or false will fail. Gamification that seeks to do all the heavy lifting around a business objective will also fail. Gamification can only support a smart strategy, not create one out of thin air.
- Valuable data: Gamification that generates valuable data equips decision-makers to better understand the user, anticipate opportunities, and proactively resolve issues.
- Takes a look at the overall market for gamification tools, services, and applications
- Analyses the elements that are critical to a winning gamification strategy
- Looks at the various typology of mobile gamification uses
- Details how to quantify the impact of gamification tactics
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