Can we apply gamification in our marketing strategies?

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gamification
This image, from a posting of a Florida agency that offers gamification marketing services, suggests some of the basics behind the concept
gamification
This image, from a posting of a Florida agency that offers gamification marketing services, suggests some of the basics behind the concept

There is a new marketing trend, primarily in business-t0-consumer markets, where businesses devise strategies to set out “gamification” models to spur the desired behaviours. These could be anything as simple as having the consumer set a goal (such as an airline points trip destination) and sharing the progress towards achieving it through an automated graph. Taken a step further, a small loan provider might set a relatively high interest rate for the initial balance, but after a certain number of months of paying on time, achieves a gamification goal to reduce the interest rates somewhat. Finally, there are exercises where consumers are invited to participate in selection-type contests, and post their results on social media.

I haven’t seen too many examples of gamification in the business-to-business marketplace and that would be reasonable, given the nature of decision-making, especially for larger capital architectural, engineering or construction projects. We aren’t going to build relationships with the brand by sharing personal Instigram photos, I expect, as part of the selection process for a new school (or sewer) project.

That said, it doesn’t hurt to understand consumer marketing trends because conceivably we can stretch them to the business-to-business market. (Remember a few years ago no one thought social media had any practical business-to-business marketing applications; now there is a wholly different perspective.)

See this post: Why Gamification Works: How Brands are Marketing With Fun, for some additional insights. Kristen Mathews writes:

Gamification combined with working with real people as influencers weave together in a perfect social strategy as illustrated by this case study I posted yesterday about how Delta Airlines used gamification to reach the heart of New Yorkers.

To put it simply, gamification incorporates fun and an element of competition to a marketing strategy. It also works with all brand fans and people who want to participate – not just the ones with a ton of followers.

The theory behind implementing these types of techniques is that they make an emotional connection with the audience and lead to a longer relationship as opposed to simple brand awareness.

An easy way to work with brand advocates and potential consumers is through tactics such as contests, free product giveaways with bloggers, and games that have a thematic relevance with the brand being promoted.

I don’t like to be to be told what to do, I like to be shown. So, let’s start with some stats:

  • More than 70% of the world’s largest 2,000 companies are expected to have deployed at least one gamified application by year-end 201
  • Vendors claim that gamification strategies can lead to a 100% to 150% increase in engagement metrics.

I welcome your thoughts on this topic. Have you seen any successful examples of gamification within the AEC marketplace. You can share your observations by email to buckshon@constructionmarketingideas.com or as a comment.

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