mobile app gamification

Mobile Apps Drive Customer Engagement with Gamification

Businesses should know how to play around especially with today’s engagement economy where time and attention are becoming increasingly scarce. More and more people are attracted to activities that are filled with opportunities to socialize, achieve and grow. With gamification, there will be high chances of consumers visiting your business website or physical store.

Traditionally, gamification is a tool used by businesses to train employees and motivate them toward better performance. According to Gamification by Design co-author Gabe Zichermann, “Gamification is 75 percent psychology and 25 percent technology”. What a gamification tool does is to tap into the psychological behaviors that govern the day-to-day decisions we make – providing a platform for competition, sharing of achievements and managing the progress of work.

But did you know that this popular business strategy is not only a great employee motivator? It also has driven customer engagement and marketing for years.

With mobile app trends, opportunities for gamification have vastly expanded allowing game elements to promote desired behaviors among consumers. Some downloadable items include those that are intended for customer onboarding and training, recruitment, frequent flyer and loyalty programs, and motivational apps. They provide integration with social networks hence lead to experiences that are shared with friends, acquaintances and co-workers.

Customer Onboarding and TrainingIf you’re in an industry where you must teach your customers how to use your product, deploying a gamified environment is a great solution. One basic method you can do is to show your customers how they can make the most out of your product. You can also use this approach to recommend updates for existing and renewing customers.

Enterprise Gamification platform  GameEffective highlights an example of using the Karma app to “pay it forward” and share knowledge, thus earning the user some points in the process.

Another simple example is Dropbox, which gets users started with the product by completing tutorial levels. Customers are motivated to complete those levels with the promise of earning extra space for each task they complete.

Recruitment tool

Another great example where gamification concept is applied is through a recruitment app called Go Army. This is a US multiplayer tactical shooter game where people have the opportunity to experience combat at a squad-level with three fireteams in an extremely realistic approach. By bringing reality into a game, recruiters allow recruits to put themselves in the shoes of a soldier and check whether they have what it takes to become a battle fighter.

Frequent Flyer Programs

United App by United Airlines is an example of gamification. This helps them to connect and motivate customers. The app can be a travel toolkit. It can check and book flights, view MileagePlus account information, check in and receive a mobile boarding pass and more, directly from your mobile device.

Loyalty programs

Another application of gamification for improving customer engagement is through loyalty programs. One of the best examples is the My Starbucks Rewards program, which lets customers earn stars depending on the drinks they purchase. Earning so many stars within a year upgrades the customer to a gold status in which they can receive a free birthday drink and free drink refills while in the store.

Motivational Apps

A lot of apps are meant to help you live a better life. Balanced is a particularly good example. Every time you finish a task, you swipe right to mark it as “Done.” A “just done” tag will then pop up beneath the task, and positive responses like “nice one”, “winner”, “good going”, etc. will flash onto your screen. Independently, these responses may be underwhelming, but in conjunction, they’re a 1-2-3 hit of positive feedback. Also, the “Done” bar is green, which is significant because green is associated with feelings of balance, energy, and health.

Sometimes, the term gamification can be confused with the exclusive use of games, but the concept behind gamification for business is the incorporation of a game mechanic in customer interaction to reach a specific outcome. Although the process can mirror a game by providing feedback and rewarding action, the end goal is associated with a business result.

“Gamification in business is not a new concept, but it has been changing and growing in many business industries. If it is done creatively it has the potential to align your business goals with your customers and can give your brand an edge against your competitors.”

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