Start Playing Games: 4 Gamification Strategies to Boost Engagement
Written by: Urban Emu
Looking for ways to get customers to spend more time with your brand? No matter what your business model, gamification can boost engagement. Once you know a few basic principles, you’ll get your audience more active on your website, social media, and more.
What is Gamification?
Gamification applies the fundamentals of game play to other applications to make them more fun, engaging, and exciting. While this doesn’t mean you have to add games to your website, gamification suggests taking some of the common mechanics of games and adding them to your online presence to spice things up.
Gamification works because humans are designed to work together. Whether it’s through cooperation or competition, we always want to know where we stand within the group — and game ideas like levels and scorekeeping scratch that itch.
We also really love rewards. Basic gaming psychology tells us that working toward a goal and getting positive feedback along the way — whether it’s a badge, a coupon, or some other form of recognition — keeps us coming back for more.
Easy Gamification Tips for Your Business
Try these ideas built on gamification principles to boost engagement across your online platforms:
- Create Competition: Use your social media accounts to host contests. Ask for the most creative uses of your products, or for customers to share the best story about why they deserve a free sample. All of the comments, likes, and shares will get you noticed, and offering a prize satisfies the most basic gaming impulses — people play because they want to win!
- Start a Rewards Club: Track visits to your website and offer a bonus at certain “levels”. For example, give a gold star to users who have made three purchases, or add a new title for those who have visited five times. You’d be surprised how even the smallest badge becomes a status symbol and encourages more frequent interaction to see what’s coming next.
- Track Progress: You know how some video games have a map that shows what level you’re at in the world of the game? See if you can create a version of that for your customers as they progress through planning, shopping, purchasing, and tracking shipments. If you offer a service, you can break down the process in whatever way makes sense for your clients.
- Offer Surprise Bonuses: Easter eggs, unlocks, and other surprises keep game players coming back to see what other special items they can find in a video game. The element of surprise works across your business platforms, too. Secret coupons, limited-edition items, and other special treats can boost engagement — especially if you serve them on a random schedule.
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