When doing anything in life, you want to yield the best results from your actions. When it comes to a gamified campaign it should be no different, you want to make sure that you’re optimising your efforts in order to maximise your results.
Now that you’ve convinced your boss to sign-off on commissioning an advergame, and you’re up-to-speed on what to expect during the campaign. Your main focus should be directed towards what steps you can take to make sure your game performs at its best and garners strong results.
In this article, we’ll go over a few simple things that go a long way with your end results. Here are five actions you can take both before and during your campaign, in order to enhance the campaign's outcomes.
1. Offer a reward incentive
Having a fun game can be engaging but what truly plugs users into an experience is direction and motivation. Motivation can be cultivated through both Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivators.
Intrinsic motivation often comes in the form of unspoken in-game delights. When users have a personal desire to keep playing, mastering, exploring and otherwise enjoying the world of a game, then you’ve created an experience that is rewarding in-and-of itself. Intrinsically motivated users are also the most likely customers to evangelise your marketing story. However, within the bite-sized games of advergaming, intrinsic motivators are rare and should not be prioritised.
Extrinsic motivation comes in the form of known possible outcomes which motivate user play. Extrinsic motivators might be internal or external to the game such as in-game power-ups/currency or real-life rewards and prize pools.
Having a competition that is built around an attainable yet desirable reward, will give your users that little extra incentive to play and submit their scores to the leaderboard. Not to mention, having a prize-based competition is a solid foundation in which to build your campaign around period.
Got more than one reward on offer? Great! Offering up daily or weekly rewards encourages players to keep coming back to your game again and again for additional chances to win.
2. Get on Social Media
Make sure to consistently promote your game across your social media channels. When we say consistently, that means that you do not just have an initial push but maintain a steady stream of promotion throughout the campaign. Challenge your followers to beat your staff scores, respond to their comments and questions and keep those conversations going. Build up a rapport with the people coming to your social media page, organically or via tags from friends.
Gamification marketing isn’t a one-size-fits-all process. What works to drive engagement on social media channels might stall on your website or in-store efforts. As you launch your gamification campaign, you should be mindful of where your target audience will be and what kind of content they will respond to.
Creating a game is all good and fine, but if you haven’t considered the most suitable social media channel/s to use for promoting and playing your game campaign in order to attract and capture your audience, you could be shortchanging yourself. This may seem like a minor detail but an oversight in this area means you could be missing out on tapping into the most effective channel to gather data from.
Note: The channel/s you choose will be different depending on your business, target audience and goals.
3. Focus on the experience, not the Leaderboard
As mentioned earlier, creating a campaign around the premise of a competition is a strong foundation for an interactive campaign, but not all campaigns require elite gamers to be the top prize winners.
There’s only so much competition that a user can take before they get discouraged or disengage from your campaign. Friendly competition can fuel users to perform at their best, but you can’t push the limits too far by making them feel uncomfortable or alienated.
This occurs mostly when a game design has no real cap on what is achievable. For example, if there is no certain amount of right answers, or no time-limit in place. Certain users can far excel beyond the other competitors. While this may sound like a positive, all those users that are left in the wake of their superior competition may lose interest and disengage. Another way of avoiding this is through placing game entrants into a draw for a prize. That way the gameplay remains fun and the randomised reward is fair.
Obviously, competition plays a huge part in Gamification, but to really engage your audience, the purpose of Gamification should not be competition alone. Focus on your users engaging with your core experience, rather than everybody competing to be first on the leaderboards.
If you’re resetting your leaderboard every week and handing out a smaller weekly reward, you may find that the level of competition is more manageable and consistent.
4. Offer In-Store Gamification
Not all of your marketing efforts should target customers before they reach your brick-and-mortar location. Location-based marketing promotes your brand to customers while they are in your building and actively engaging with your brand.
When it comes to building atmosphere, some stores just want to have people present (think about how much more enticing a place looks when people are inside as opposed to an empty store). That is why certain chains and independent cafes/restaurants have adopted in-store advergaming as a means of keeping butts in seats.
Gamification is a fun way to get customers to engage with your business, pass the time, and form deeper brand loyalty. It comes with the added bonus of allowing you to collect valuable customer data that helps you learn about and connect with shoppers and clients.
With prizes like discounted future visits or freebies. These games can be played on customer phones or in-store mounted tablets/kiosks positioned in line. Having in-store leaderboards seems to only further stimulate the competition amongst customers. These games are an immediate way to incorporate a social element to a customer’s visit to a store location, and improve that all-important first impression of the property.
Challenge your customers with games when they’re at your business using interactive touchscreens, digital signage, and free customer Wi-Fi. In-store Leaderboards are another example of encouraging your customer base to get involved.
In-store gamification is also a more effective way to distribute coupons to customers that they’re more likely to redeem (ever noticed how many handouts go into the nearest bin?).
5. Promote the game on your website
This should go without saying, but you should be making the most of your company’s natural traffic by hosting campaign promotional material on your website that links out to your game. Better yet, the game should be embedded on your site in order to drive more organic traffic to your webpage.
This can help convert window-shoppers to engaged players and build positive and lasting connections with your brand.
In our honest opinion, all five of these actions are a must for any advergame campaign but to others they are viewed as optional. If you can strongly carry out at least two of the above actions, we guarantee you will see a great improvement in numbers compared to previous attempts.
All of our most successful campaigns have ticked all five action boxes, yielding our highest engagement rate recordings to date.