Gone are the days when the best way to market a business was through TV ads and direct mail. Today's marketers have far more effective options, including gamification, and they're using them. In fact, the worldwide gamification market is worth over USD $9 billion.
Why are so many businesses investing in gamification marketing so heavily? This strategy, which involves game mechanics and "game-like" interactions with customers such as rewards, points and promotional games, pays off in several ways.
1. Engage Audiences from Day One
Spreading brand awareness is difficult enough. Spreading enough brand awareness to convince customers to interact with your brand is far more difficult, as your customers lead busy lives and won't stop to check out a same-old-same-old sales pitch.
Gamification, on the other hand, gives them a reason to pause and that reason is fun. Games capture consumers' attention and break the mould, setting you apart from competitors.
Mobile games bring fun and enjoyment to users, plain and simple, whether it be to pass the time or as a form of escapism, games are a form of entertainment that speaks to the very fabric of humanity.
We, as social creatures, are deeply driven to adventure, achievement and triumph. All of which can be reached within the safety and accessibility of a game. This means a safe & snackable experience within a game can allow people to have fun, and fun is both engaging and marketable.
2. Keep Users Active
As every content marketer knows, the struggle isn't only to engage customers once, it's to keep them coming back long term, and that happens to be gamification's speciality.
For example, your social media marketer could create a game in which your brand posts on Instagram every day with a "photo scavenger hunt" type of challenge. The more days customers return and complete new challenges, the greater their potential prizes could be. This encourages repeat visits because each visit makes the previous day's visit more worthwhile.
One of the strongest factors within game design is its ability to have measurable engagement. Gamify’s software platform allows for the backend to capture data pertaining to how many unique players are engaging with the campaign, who is handing over their information, who is sharing on socials and who is redeeming their earned rewards.
Unlike traditional marketing, games cannot unexpectedly pop-up in user feeds to arrest a users attention; instead, users are provided with both an option and incentive to play the game which means any engagement from that point on comes from user motivation - they are in control and they choose to interact with the company.
With users engaging with games and inadvertently interacting with businesses, there is an opportunity for businesses to display their messages and brand in a variety of ways throughout the time that the user is participating in gameplay. Games invoke a level of engagement that cannot be reached by the likes of video. In fact, studies have shown that although regular TV still has large viewership, unfortunately for stakeholders in the $72 billion TV marketplace people are habitually looking at their phones during the airing of commercials.
In an age where people look to a screen to be entertained in moments of downtime, most users don’t see the games they’re playing as marketing at all. Games can offer them that quick burst of stimulating activity while also creating product or service awareness/ passing along new lead information to businesses.
3. Gain Traction from Word of Mouth
To echo an earlier point, gamified marketing experiences get consumers' attention because they're fun and unique. When consumers find something fun and unique, their natural instinct is to tell their friends all about it and to suggest they also give it a try.
This is why, when you have a gamified experience, it's especially important to promote it on social media and through email marketing. Those platforms make it particularly easy for people to share content with their friends. They could forward your email or, on social media, they could tag friends, share posts, send posts through DMs, and more.
When you capitalise on gamification strategies, every dollar you spend has the potential to reach further because you're helping customers spread the word. Even if you're new to digital media & marketing, this is an excellent time to launch your first digital marketing plan and campaign.
4. Encourage More In-Depth Interaction
The more people interact with a site, app, or brand, the more invested in it they become. That's a recipe for great conversion rates.
Advergames are highly successful in encouraging customers to interact with your brand or app more, depending on how you structure it. For example, secondhand clothing retailer ThredUp has a Bingo game they offer from time to time. Customers mark squares by using certain features of the app they may have missed.
This not only introduces customers to features they may not have known about, but it gets them to spend more time on the app. That strengthens the brand-consumer connection, often leading to more sales.
These days most people own multiple devices which all have access to the internet, social media and apps. Wherever internet users can be found, games can be implemented into their technology of choice. Whether it be mobile phones, tablets, laptop or desktop computers, games can be formatted and converted to fit each platform, making the reach of a Gamification campaign unlimited.
6. Wide Market Reach
Games are multi-generational and appeal to young and old alike. If a business is looking for a way to appeal to consumers of all ages, games are currently the most accessible stream to reach such a wide network of demographics. According to Forbes, 2017 saw mobile gaming account for 42% of global gaming revenue - that's over $50 billion in revenue.
To give you an understanding of why mobile gaming is so lucrative, 80% of smartphone users play games on their phone, nearly 50% of which play games daily, putting in approximately 1-2 hours of gameplay each day. The Demographic of Male and Female mobile gamers is almost equally split at 48% Female to 52% Male gamers, with the average gamer being 36 years old.
These numbers show that the market is vast and varied and when you marry those figures up with the integration of smart devices into daily life, it becomes quite evident that whichever target market a business is aiming for is well within the reach of Gamification.
Most marketers confirm that the required budget for traditional marketing can be astronomical, depending on the brands reach. The required resources from both internal departments and independent hires in order to acquire expected results can become both an overwhelming and costly process. Whereas Gamify's award-winning software platform has inbuilt systems in place that allow for businesses to keep track of their consumer traffic and lead information.
One of the most common reasons for Gamification's rough beginnings is the misconception from marketers that creating a marketable game is both an expensive and time-consuming process. This may have been true when smartphone technology first became popular, now, however, this could not be further from the truth.
Gamify's software helps create a one-stop-shop for all the required elements of a successful online marketing campaign, saving marketers the hassle, time and money that would otherwise go into a marketing campaign.
Incorporating Gamification Marketing into Your Strategy
With the clutter of ads that are hitting customers across all mediums these days, gamification marketing has become a reliable way to stand out from the crowd and deliver an experience for users.
To make the most of your gamified strategy, though, you need the help of experts. Contact our gamification marketing team to get started on your next campaign.