Tuesday, April 22, 2014

5 Brands Embracing Gamification

By now, most of us know what gamification is or have at least heard of it. For those who have not, gamificaion is simply the process of applying game-like thinking and challenges to a non-game atmosphere. Gamification has been proven to boost engagement, increase creative thinking and problem solving, and promote friendly competition in the workplace. Gamification appeals to our most basic desires - to play, compete, and win.

It seems as though every company is trying to implement a gamified strategy these days, and for good reason. Gamification platforms can be used in many different areas: for recruitment and hiring, employee feedback, employee training, health and wellness and so many more. Gamified solutions have the ability to increase revenue and ROI, empower employees, and foster a positive company culture founded on achievement and success.

Finding the sweet spot to a gamified solution for your company is not easy, and might not happen overnight. So we have done some digging and found 5 successful companies that illustrate a gamification strategy, and have highlighted them here. Take a look and let us know what you think!

#1: T-Mobile 

With more than 45 million customers, T-Mobile is always on the cusp of innovation and collaboration. Last year, cell phone giant T-Mobile saw an opportunity with gamification to motivate employees internally and they ran with it. Their nationwide effort to motivate its customer care and retail store representatives has certainly paid off; they have boosted employee engagement by 1,000% since they deployed their gamification platform. Within the first two weeks, 15,000 employees completed an array of "getting started" missions, much better than the old fashioned way of getting employees to read dreadful training handbooks and pamphlets. Employees embraced the new platform so much that it has taken off like wildfire. T-Mobile has engaged more than 30,000 representatives so they can better respond to customer requests and questions.

#2: Popchips

Popchips, a potato chip company, have taken a new spin on gamification in order to compete with the big dogs Frito Lay, and so far business is good. They teamed up with a fellow San Francisco-based startup Kiip to offer virtual in-app rewards to gamers that can be redeemed for real world prizes. This is how it works: say you are playing a game on your smartphone. You reach a new level or beat the high score, and a reward pops up on-screen. Without ever having to leave your game app, you can input your information to redeem that reward and it tells you where to go to get it. Popchips says by using this gamified technique, they have been able to better utilize a limited budget instead of spending big bucks on mass communication. So far, Popchips has seen a 40% increase in sales!

#3: Samsung

Globally known electronics company Samsung was already experiencing millions of fans visiting their site regularly, but they wanted to think of a way to thank them for their loyalty and engage with them even further. Enter Samsung Nation, the newest gamified platform still in BETA. Launched in November, users can earn badges for completing activities such as watching videos, participating in forums, writing reviews, and engaging with other members. Since Samsung's main website already gets tens of millions visits annually, they didn't need to do much in addition. The main reason they rolled out their social loyalty program was to increase engagement and the number of product reviews. It has been working too. So far they have seen the number of product reviews increasing by hundreds of percent per month. The key takeaway here is huge - instead of spending millions of dollars to acquire a new audience, focus on the people already engaging with your brand and expressing a keen interest. 

#4: Autodesk

Audodesk, a 3D automation software used for games and films, revamped their 30-day product trial page with a fun, gamified experience that was tailored to their creative audience. The response has been overwhelming. Not only did they reimagine how the trial page would look, they also created a new 8-step guided tutorial on how to take the in-game data from a sketch to a fully realized 3D creation. This effectively showed trial users how the Autodesk 3D Max would fit into their art creation workflow, should they choose to purchase the full version. In addition to this, they created an intriguing storyline complete with rewards to incentivize users to complete the entire trial and understand Autodesk completely. This new trial demonstrated that prospective customers were twice as likely to purchase the full version of Autodesk if they had used the software at least 3 times during the trial period. Overall, they found a 54% increase in trial usage, a 15% increase in buy clicks, and a 29% increase in channel revenue per trail start.

#5: AstraZeneca

Multinational biopharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has harnessed the power of gamification to educate and inspire employees internally with their latest game based learning solution called Go To Jupiter. So far it has been used to teach 500 agents about new medicine. In order to motivate them to learn about new pharmaceuticals, agents must earn a certain amount of points to reach a Stadium. A Stadium represents the official launch of a medicine event, where agents can answer questions using a remote control and earn points and badges to improve their ranking. AstraZeneca's goal with Go To Jupiter was to focus agents' attention on the release of new products, check real-time training results, foster team competition and cooperation, and to create an effective team building tool. They observed a very high usage rate of 97%, with most employees using the platform outside of work hours. On top of that, 95% of users completed each training session. This is a prime example of how much gamification can help a business, no matter the size or circumstances.
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