According to a study by Microsoft, an average attention span of a person has reduced by 67% since 2000. Currently, it is equal to only eight seconds. These seconds can be decisive to your business, especially when it comes to your marketing strategy. To date, one of the ways to capture your audience's attention is to use gamification.
Gamification is a marketing strategy that can be used by any business and across any industry. This strategy is currently considered one of the most effective ways for brands to deliver their message to their users in a creative way. Gamification is the process of integrating game mechanics into a product or service to motivate users to achieve a task. When you gamify high-value interactions with partners, customers, or employees, you drive more sales, better ROI, deeper loyalty, stronger collaboration, and higher customer satisfaction.
Companies that use gamification are seven times more profitable compared to those that don’t use gamified elements at work, whether with employees or consumers.
Benefits of Gamification in Marketing
In 2021, the global gamification market was valued at 11.94% billion, representing a $7.03 billion increase since 2016, and is projected to reach USD 37.00 billion by 2027 with a CAGR of 24.8%. Game-based learning improves employee productivity, engagement, and profitability, so more and more global businesses are adopting gamification elements somehow. Brands can implement a variety of different gamified elements in their marketing strategies, such as:
- Achievements. Badges, points, or levels are given to the user as a reward for reaching some predetermined achievement.
- Leaderboards. Users are ranked according to their gaming performance, creating competition and inducing higher involvement rates.
- Progress. Customers are asked to progress in a particular activity, and there is an element displaying their progression.
- Countdown. Game players are challenged to complete a specific task in a limited period.
Gamification is aimed at the basic instinct of humans “to play” and has proven to be an excellent way for marketers to provide a positive digital experience for consumers and benefit from increased brand awareness, customer loyalty, and profitability. The main benefits of using gamification in your digital marketing strategy include:
Improve customer engagement
According to Delloite, gamification can help a company increase customer engagement by up to 40%, becoming the first step of a long-term relationship between the customer and the brand. Gamification also helps grow brand awareness and loyalty. Customers who remember your brand’s name after having a fun experience with a branded game are a valuable asset to your business and are more likely to become loyal customers than indifferent or actively disengaged customers.
Gamified content is fun, interactive, and challenging. According to the Digital Marketing World Forum report, 60% of consumers said they are more likely to purchase from a brand if they enjoy playing a game with it. Gamification marketing can be an exciting and easy way to explain the main benefits of your product or service and can be an excellent approach to reach new users and convert them into customers a few steps later.
Help to gather customer data
Another benefit of gamification is to help collect useful GDPR-compliant data, which can be added to your CRM. Combined with IoT, AI, and machine learning systems, large databases can provide businesses with all the necessary tools to target customers with the right offer at the best time and place possible. By offering users the possibility of having fun playing the game or winning a reward or prize, they can be more willing to give you potential data, which can be used to understand your target audience better.
Increase conversion rate and maintain consumer relationships
As users engage with the gamified elements provided by the brand, they’re more likely to respond to your CTA to win rewards attached to the interactive experience. It will help to improve conversion rates. Gamification also makes the promotional offers more interesting. For example, customers may ignore a clickable banner advertising a 15% discount in the following hours, but, at the same time, they may be excited by being rewarded the same 15% discount for passing three levels in an interactive branded game. Gamification is an excellent ability to reward consumers for their loyalty and engagement. It allows sharing the brand message in a fun and compelling manner.
It is human nature to play. We are programmed to do it from day one. Play enables us to explore new things, to stretch our abilities, to learn and adapt. (Forbes)
Target Generation Z
Generation Z is used to technology and creative thinking and is expected to become the largest consumer group in the near future. It is the first generation to be brought up with smartphones, tablets, and artificial intelligence, but with a notoriously short attention span. According to a Deloitte survey, 26% of Gen Z members say video games are their favorite entertainment activity, while worldwide, video games capture 52.9% of the digital media market, and its segment is growing 12% per year on average. Gamification techniques provide this generation with the type of content they used to - visual, bite-sized, and highly addictive.
How to Create a Gamification Marketing Campaign
What is the best way to learn? Almost 80% of the learners say they would be more productive if their university or work were more game-like, confirming the fact that some of the most memorable lessons we learn are through games. Marketing is not an exception. If you aim to “grow” your customers into advanced users of your product, gamification can become a creative solution.
According to a survey held by the Boston Retail Partners, nearly nine of ten retailers plan to use gamification elements to engage the customer within five years. It means that gamification is not only about fun - it can help marketers and business owners achieve their goals. With a gamification campaign, you tell your customers that your brand can be attractive, varied, and creative while retaining all its qualitative characteristics. If smartly executed, gamification results can be impressive and bring success for both users and the brand. Below are several steps on how to create and use a working gamification marketing strategy.
Define your goals
Like any other marketing campaign, your gamification efforts should start with a defined goal and target audience. It can be challenging to determine the problem, and here is the moment when the “5-Whys” approach invented by Toyota’s legendary systems architect, Taiichi Ohno, can help. This problem-solving method explores the underlying cause-and-effect of particular problems. Once you establish your challenge, set a goal that would solve the issue. Gamification marketing can have end goals like:
- To increase engagement;
- To build brand awareness;
- To boost customer loyalty;
- To drive conversions;
- To encourage brand advocacy.
It’s up to you to choose the goal that your business should achieve, and only then will you be able to determine the target audience.
Figure out a game idea
A game is an excellent way to tell people about your brand and creatively engage them. According to Adact, to start using a gamified marketing campaign, you should consider developing a game that contains a clear message about your brand and conveys it clearly and concisely. It will help your target audience know what you are selling them at a glance. You can create a new game but consider that users will unlikely spend too much time figuring out what to do. So, the best way is to take a game we all love and already know how to play and apply it to your campaign. Make sure your game looks attractive and worthy of sharing.
Build the game involving different departments
A gamification campaign requires different specialists, including marketers, content managers, developers, social managers, and others. Having professional knowledge in different areas can help you develop your game correctly. You also need to be sure what exactly you want from the specialists and what kind of game you want to see as a result. For example, Adact highlights three main game requirements:
- The game should be mobile-friendly as nearly 80% of smartphone users make a purchase using their mobile device. However, it should also work well on other devices;
- It should work with different internet connections;
- The game should be simple to understand.
Analyze the game
While analyzing the gamification campaign, pay attention to:
- Completion rate of the game. A higher completion rate means higher user engagement. Try to design your game in such a way that it reaches a higher level of completion.
- Social media reach. Social media platforms serve as the primary source of communication between brands and their audiences. Make sure you use related hashtags, keywords, and creative taglines to catch the people’s attention.
- The bounce rate of the game. According to the latest study, the reasonable bounce rate ranges from 30% to 55%. Use all measures to keep it up to the mark for maximum performance.
- Unique game players. If you aim to get the most attention from users, include exciting themes and unique players in your game so that it can reach a wider audience.
- Percentage of people who clicked on the following links. Keeping track of people who clicked on the following links present on the first page is a great way to build brand awareness. Keep account of this percentage and update the page occasionally for better results.
What Industries Use Gamification?
The global gamification market is highly competitive and consists of several major players focusing on expanding their customer base across foreign countries. Companies like Microsoft Corporation, Cognizant, and MPS Interactive Systems Limited are leveraging strategic collaborative initiatives to increase their market share and profitability.
Gamification in businesses is used to increase stickiness, content creation, and purchases. World-class retailers, e-commerce communities, and consumer brands like Samsung, Dannon, General Mills, and Footlocker rely on a gamification approach in their marketing strategies to meet their key business objectives. Industries that are already using gamification to achieve growth in their annual revenue and enhancement in their customer profit margins include:
- Retail and e-commerce;
- Human resources.
Gamification in E-commerce
Gamification has become an attractive and highly efficient strategy for brands and retailers specializing in products. It transformed the everyday repetitive purchasing activity into something much more enjoyable. According to the Digital Market Forum, 60% of consumers admit they would buy more from a brand if it offered some sort of appealing game. Gamification reinforces any online store and brand strategy, encouraging users to stay engaged for longer, try new ‘levels,’ and obtain a psychological reward that comes with real benefits.
Gamification in Healthcare
The healthcare gamification market was valued at $25.3 billion in 2020 and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 14.6% in the 2021-2027 period. Gamification in the healthcare industry involves applying game principles, game mechanics, and design methods to non-game applications to increase user engagement and raise health awareness. Healthcare gamification has significantly influenced apps designed for self-managed medication, fitness and nutrition, physical therapy, and emotional health.
Many health insurance companies like Aetna, UnitedHealth Group, and BlueCross BlueShield have launched initiatives to gamify their offerings. For example, Mindbloom - Aetna’s online social game helps users improve health and well-being and lead a more balanced life.
Several startups have also emerged to use gamification and make fitness more fun. Thus, Nike+ enables over 100 million members to track their activities, set goals, compare results, and improve performance. The brand has used gamification to create a community based on running and friendly competition and help users stay inspired by pushing each other to keep improving and live a healthy lifestyle. Fitocracy app is another gamification startup that allows users to log their workouts and receive points. Members can earn achievements and badges, add friends, join groups, follow others, chat, comment, and compare results.
Gamification in Politics
Some political campaigns have also begun to tap into gamification to engage customers of varying age groups. For example, during the presidential campaign in 2012, the Barack Obama campaign website ran a contest with a lunch with the president and first lady as a prize to convince website visitors to donate. Another example of gamification in politics was the Obama campaign’s G.O.P. Debate Watch website, where Democratic supporters could play a game in which they donated each time the Republican candidate used the word from a predetermined “hot list” during the debate. Gamification is also being used by political campaigns to encourage competition among campaigners in a fun way.
Gamification in Nonprofit
Various nonprofit organizations have used gamification to build awareness of critical causes and engage more supporters. Thus, Movember- an organization promoting awareness of prostate cancer and testicular cancer and mental health and suicide prevention- is world known for its annual mustache-based fundraising challenge in November of each year. Movember motivates members by issuing clever challenges and offering big rewards.
Another example of gamified fundraising was the world-known ICE Bucket Challenge held by ALS Foundation in 2014. The Challenge earned the ALS Association $115 million in research funding and increased the number of ALS treatment centers from 100 to 156.
Source: RTI Report
Gamification in Human Resources
HR officials in a number of organizations have begun to use gamification to recruit and motivate employees. For example, to motivate senior executives to complete its leadership development program, Deloitte has gamified its Deloitte Leadership Academy, which delivers lessons and insights from world-famous business schools and global leaders, such as Harvard, Stanford, and IMD. By completing programs, the Academy participants earn badges and other rewards that are portable to websites like LinkedIn and Twitter.
TOP Gamification Software
Gamification software is a platform that involves applying game elements and other incentives to encourage participation. Applying game design mechanisms to non-game contexts boosts engagement, motivates participation, and improves customer loyalty. When selecting the vest gamification software for your business, consider the following features:
- Customizable. The gamification platform should be easy to customize, and its design should be unique to suit a specific business.
- Leaderboards and rankings. Gamification software should provide a leaderboard and ranking system, allowing users to monitor their progress and measure their activity relative to others.
- Community reward. The gamification platform should reward end-users with scores, badges, achievements, or status to improve user adoption.
- Social sharing capabilities. Users of gamification software should be able to share the gamification tools on different social media platforms like Twitter or Facebook.
- Reporting. A gamification solution should allow users to create reports, customize, save, and share them, as well as have drag and drop filters.
To help you choose the best gamification software for your business needs, we’ve rounded up the top 10 products that can give your brand the edge it needs to thrive in a competitive business environment.
Adact helps businesses stand out and become memorable by providing over 30 interactive and gamified campaigns for their marketing needs. All campaign types are 100% customizable and fully branded, which means you have full ownership over the product's final look using your custom fonts, colors, and visuals. You can also define gamification options by adding links to your social media or e-shop, limiting gameplays per player, determining whether to collect leads before or after the game, and others. Additionally, this gamification software allows you to define prizes, set automatic emails, and assign codes from your e-shop.
Each game comes with a built-in public leaderboard and score tracking, allowing you to know who achieved the best scores and give prizes to the top players. Additionally, Adact also starts real-time analytics to check your gamification marketing campaign results and track features like:
- Landing page visitors;
- Traffic in and out;
- Buttons clicked;
- Each player’s scores.
- Adact comes with a Prize Management System, offering you to choose among different options available:
- A prize to everyone reaching at least 100 points;
- Choose a winner from the top 3 scores;
- Give your custom coupon code to anyone who achieved 100 points;
- Raffle a prize at the end of the campaign between all players.
Qualifio can provide you with two powerful, complementary, and easy-to-use SaaS platforms:
Qualifio Engage is an interactive marketing platform that can boost your marketing with highly converting interactive quizzes, contests, polls, and 50 other animated games. This product enables large brands and media groups to engage audiences across digital channels, collecting first- and zero-party data in a secure and GDPR-compliant manner. Qualifio Engage can help you:
- Improve your brand awareness with fun and engaging quizzes, contests, surveys, tests, animated games, etc.
- Convert the visitors into customers with high conversion campaigns that are easily and quickly published on your website.
- Expand your knowledge of your customers by collecting data.
- Leverage a data-driven marketing strategy by incorporating customer data into your existing marketing tools like CRM, CDP, and DMP.
Qualifio Loyalty is an innovative interaction-based platform that helps you grow passionate communities and build loyalty by rewarding customers for all types of interactions. This platform encourages customer engagement with a platform natively connected to Qualifio Engage. Qualifio Loyalty can help you:
- Increase customer lifetime value.
- Boost customer engagement by integrating interactive content into your loyalty programs through a platform natively connected to Qualifio Engage and reward-based interactions.
- Consolidate your data by connecting the platform to the existing tech and marketing stack.
- Use audience segments to deliver more relevant communications and rewards to maximize your marketing efforts.
More than 400 brands and media groups worldwide are engaging their audiences and reinforcing their relationships with the community daily with Qualifio tools. The platform works in sectors like retail & e-commerce, Media, Sports, FMCG, and others.
Formation is the dynamic offer platform that helps organizations to maximize their digital transformation investments and improve relationships with customers through gamified campaigns. The platform offers gamification services to:
- Drive customer engagement. The Formation platform provides personalized, gamified offers to increase completion and engagement rates by customers in order to improve customer lifetime value.
- Increase efficiency. You can spread rewards across multiple transactional and non-transactional customer activities and get more from your rewards budget.
- Incentivize new customer behaviors. You can build customer loyalty with tiered offers that encourage the right kinds of engagement and transactional behaviors.
Dynamic offers provided by the Formation platform allow you to achieve business goals and increase the frequency of purchases from loyal customers.
Whether you are a data scientist, loyalty marketer, product leader, merchandiser, or driving your organization's digital transformation, this platform can accelerate building relationships with customers by providing insights that grow customer loyalty using patented machine learning technology that drives business outcomes. Formation gamified offers make transactional and non-transactional experiences interesting for consumers and drive business goals from increasing frequency and spending to accelerating category cross-sells.
Wiply offers gamified experiences with which online shops and brands can attract, engage, and convert any target audience. The customized games allow users to win coupons and discounts, developing a new way to engage customers to increase e-commerce conversion rates and decrease marketing spending.
Wiply enables online shops and brands to create their customized game and implement it on their website, allowing them to overcome the technological barrier and high costs of developing custom games for their next digital campaign. Users of this software can choose from different games and coupons and customize them with Wiply’s graphic bank without the need of a graphic designer.
Each of the games available on the platform can:
- Boost your conversion rates. Wiply games turn visitors into customers by making them feel like they won something unique others didn’t.
- Reduce CPC. Promoting games instead of generic ads makes your ads stand out and get more clicks.
- Amplify social media engagement. Your customers start liking, commenting, and sharing more with gamification tools.
Smartico is a multi-channel Realtime Gamification and Marketing Loyalty Platform enabling companies to drive customer engagement and increase revenue by providing personalized retention and marketing tools. Smartico’s gamification software utilizes challenges and industry-leading gaming techniques to motivate players for a more consistent gaming experience, encouraging long-term engagement, and retention. It includes nine gamification mechanics rewarding your players for increased gameplay:
From these mechanics, your players go through Smartico’s gamification funnel, which rewards gameplay, encourages participation, and ultimately delivers higher LTVs.
Smartico also has a gamification map offering you a bird view of the logic and statistics of your gamification flow. It allows you to quickly check the correct dependency of missions-levels as you can easily get lost, reaching 50 or 100 missions without having a good idea of the actual flow.
You can also choose among ready-to-use templates for setting up gamification. Based on the best practices and observing different customer setups, the platform offers a recommended set of missions, rules for the points accumulation, and a tiered structure for various business verticals. If you choose a template, you must only provide creative content such as images, logos, and icons based on your brand theme.
The gamification feature set provided by Agile CRM helps increase collaboration, lead conversion, and revenue generation by gamifying your sales process. Features like custom leaderboards, activity logs, real-time alerts, and advanced sales metrics help your sales team stay focused and improve their numbers every day by treating sales like a game.
Agile CRM is a leading sales, marketing, and service CRM for small to medium-sized businesses. This product is trusted by more than 15 thousand customers and is complete with everything from email templates and pop-ups to advanced sales, telephony integration, and marketing automation. Agile CRM is All-in-One CRM software allowing users to sell and market like fortune 500 with web engagement, email campaigns, social media integration, helpdesk, and mobile marketing.
With Agile CRM’s industry-leading gamification software, you’ll step up your sales game, encouraging competition and collaboration within your sales team while boosting lead conversions and revenue. This product allows:
- Gamify sales;
- Encourage collaboration;
- See who is the leader with custom leaderboards;
- Get real-time data updates;
- Track sales with gamification reports;
- Get comprehensive sales metrics.
Spinify provides sales activity gamification and lively leaderboards, driving friendly competition and boosting your teams’ performance. This software offers features like Achievements, Targets, Ranking, Revenue growth, Productivity Gap, Performance, Local Scores, etc. Spinify displays the teams’ performance information on the office TV, showing them what has been done and what is left to do, while the progress bar displays step-by-step movements in real-time.
Staff can also use the Spinify app to see the same notifications and leaderboards anywhere and anytime. Target achievement predictor indicates who of the team members is ok and who may need help, while the customization and personalization allow you to choose what is right for your teams to focus on today. Spinify’s gamification establishes a culture of healthy competition, encouraging better performance and helping your team members compare stats with points, badges, levels, and leaderboards.
Hoopla engages users by pulling performance data from used applications and broadcasting real-time updates on TV, web, and mobile devices. This platform broadcasts performance updates, recognizes wins, and shares the team’s successes by showing personal newsflashes.
It allows employees to celebrate success each time they close a deal. Using sales gamification, Hoopla creates a high-performance culture that enables teammates to stay personally engaged and focus on milestones and goals that lead to results. This gamification software is best for Banking, Entertainment, Call-Centers, and Software companies.
Hoopla provides the following solutions to motivate employees and boost performance:
- Employee communication. 72% of employees say they would be more productive with regular feedback from managers, so Hoopla has some excellent solutions to bring more transparency to employees from their managers and leaders.
- Employee engagement. 64% of US employees report feeling disengaged at work, which costs the US economy up to $550 billion each year. By offering teams a combination of fun, rewards, and connections, Hoopla keeps employees motivated and engaged.
- Remote teams. 60% of remote workers report loneliness, while more than a half of them feel disconnected from their company. Hoopla gamification tools help to build a strong, connected, and inspired team wherever they work to solve everyday challenges and grow your business.
- Sales teams. 90.4% of sales leaders using gamification in their teams saw positive results in terms of motivation and other performance factors. Hoopla was designed to build three top motivators - clear goals, a cohesive team, and a culture of recognition.
- Customer success teams. 60% of customer service reps report they don't have the right tools or technology to handle complex problems. Hoopla provides tools for customer success teams, allowing them to create a smooth, seamless customer experience.
- Contact centers. With Hoopla’s tools for contact centers, managers don't feel the lack of communication or experience burnout, which reduces the turnover rate and boosts productivity.
LevelEleven is a sales activity management platform designed to drive the behaviors that lead to sales and customer retention. With personalized scorecards, real-time TV broadcasts, and data-driven coaching, this software helps employees manage day-to-day sales activity and demonstrates their performance. LevelEleven also helps focus on new sales employees and get them on board with the rest of the sales team, promoting peer-to-peer collaboration for best practice sharing. This platform's gamified approach gives team members visibility into the sales metrics that drive revenue.
Among the primary features of LevelEleven are:
- Sales behavior analytics;
- Historical trends;
- Real-time leaderboards;
- Agent analytics;
- Agent scorecards;
- Peer-to-peer comparison;
- Sales campaign management;
- Automated emails;
- Updates in users' client relationship management systems.
EngageBay is an integrated marketing, sales, and service automation platform with a built-in CRM. It offers CRM tools like targeted marketing, workflow automation, automatic data entry, deals pipeline visualization, etc. EnagageBay’s marketing automation software is designed to save time by allowing users to grow their audience and automate routine and manual tasks. This free small business CRM with marketing automation also promotes better alignment between marketing and sales teams, streamlines processes, and increases revenue growth. Trusted by over 46 thousand customers, EngageBay was one of the top 10 fastest-growing marketing automation platforms in 2019 and is among emerging favorites in 2022.
EngageBay is best for small to medium-sized businesses that require affordable, all-in-one sales and marketing software to acquire, engage visitors, and convert them into customers. This platform lets you acquire leads with lead generation forms and pop-ups, engage website visitors with attractive landing pages, nurture them with engaging emails, and automate your marketing funnel with marketing automation.
Our brains love games. Leadfamly’s gamification platform helps people get past the mental protection shield and engage them by triggering the deepest drivers of human activity. It allows you to upgrade your marketing and accomplish business goals by:
- Getting new customers. This gamification platform can drive awareness and boost brand engagement to win new business.
- Keeping existing customers. The platform allows you to reengage with your customers and build brand loyalty.
- Growing customer value. Leadfamly also increases customer lifetime value through continuous engagement.
Among 30+ different pre-built game concepts available, including knowledge games, luck games, and skill games, Leadfamly allows customers to choose the options that fit their marketing goals. For example, luck games are high converters but low engagers, knowledge games offer high engagement rates, and skill games can provide equally high converting and engagement. The game concept you choose isn’t the most important to your success, but it’s still essential to understand the categories.
Compass is the #1 Incentive gamification software for revenue engines. The product can be used for the sales team, channel partners, gig-workforce, or support teams. Compass can be seamlessly integrated with any CRM and comes with pre-built integrations with popular CRMs like HubSpot, Leadsquare, Salesforce, etc that help to set up schemes, provide live scorecards, performance widgets, one-click payments, game templates, predictions, and more.
Pricing Options of TOP Gamification Platforms
Gamification software is usually priced per user, so costs may vary depending on how many people you need for your gamification. Some vendors offer a free trial version of their software that will allow a limited number of users or be available for a limited period. The table below demonstrates pricing options and the availability of a free trial period for the companies reviewed above.
|Gamification Software||Prices Options/Year||Trial Period|
|Adact||Starting from 1200€||Free for 14 days|
|Qualifio||Starting from 1000€||No free trial|
|Wiply||Starting from $432||Free for 21 days|
|Smartico||Starting from $162||Free for 15 users|
|Agile CRM||Starting from $120||Free for 10 users|
|Spinify||Starting from $240||Free trial available|
|Hoopla||Starting from $264||Free trial available|
|LevelEleven||Starting from $600||No free trial|
|EngageBay||Starting from $130||Free trial available|
Gamification is a business tool that is actively gaining momentum and becoming a trend. As a customer engagement tool, gamification is a way to capture your audience’s attention and make your brand stand out in a competitive business environment. Game-based learning also improves employee engagement, productivity, and profitability, leading to more and more global businesses actively adopting gamification elements in their workplaces. According to the reports, 70% of the world’s largest 2,000 companies use gamification in some way.
In the world of e-commerce, gamification is especially powerful. It helps you:
- Collect GDPR- and CCPA-compliant customer data;
- Leverage UGC to grow your brand awareness by encouraging customers to share their winning scores or photos on social media.;
- Educate your audience with an interactive quiz to inform people about your areas of expertise.
- Increase engagement and reduce bounce rate;
- Drive conversion. If you reward people with coupons or points, they are more likely to come back to spend them.
However, despite its multiple benefits, designing gamification may be a challenging task, which involves understanding motivational psychology with the additional goal of influencing user behavior. You must not only develop a game that people want to play but also achieve your business goals through it. With the marketing gamification platforms, you’ll be able to do this quickly and correctly, increasing your business performance and boosting customer engagement.