Gamification as a new marketing tool

The gaming market is growing: according to GfK, the German gaming industry sold around 4.37 billion euros in 2018.

Cybersports bring together stadiums around the world, Candy Crush Saga leads the list of the most popular applications in the Google Play Store, and Pokémon Go has pushed millions of users to search for virtual pokémon.

Games evoke emotions, such as joy, ambition and happiness, which can also be successfully used by marketers.

The child in each of us

The gaming instinct is a natural human instinct. The game is important for the mental and physical development of the child. But adults also need to play.

According to a study by the German Game Industry Association, 28% of consumers of computer and video games are people over 50 years of age.

These figures indicate that our parents, and even grandparents, are an underestimated target audience, especially against the backdrop of an ageing society. Because of their ability to activate social interaction, games can also counteract problems such as loneliness in old age.

In addition to the classic target group of so-called active players, i.e. players who spend a lot of time playing games, some people play only occasionally and do not invest their personal money in the purchase of devices for games.

The platform will allow you to download games from the cloud and play on any device using a dedicated controller. Although nothing is yet known about the pricing policy of the service, it can be assumed that the platform is capable of activating the potential of a rarely-playing target group.

Playing approaches in the classic retail

According to the German Retail Association, the retail sector is actively struggling with a decline in the number of customers. One way to attract more customers to retail chains is to make shopping more exciting and interactive through gamification – integrating game elements into a non-game context.

Gaming elements address human needs, such as the desire for interaction, the realization of ambition, competitive spirit and the thirst for reward.

In the spring of 2018, for example, the book seller Hugendubel encouraged customers to visit bookstores with its Bookbuster campaign. A smartphone game was developed where users could test their knowledge of literature on three levels.

Level 1 consisted of a virtual puzzle game with the cover of the book, and level 2 motivated users to guess the names of the books presented by the images. The augmented reality was used for the third level. Participants could collect virtual birds and win books in the process.

According to Hugendubel’s Marketing Director Sarah Orlandi, the campaign led to an increase in the number of visitors and sales.

In honor of the opening of the new IKEA store in Dallas, the furniture manufacturer gave customers the opportunity to immerse themselves in the virtual world of IKEA. In another VR-based project, participants designed an IKEA bamboo lamp.

Another successful case in the field of gamification belongs to NIKE. In order to promote the new “Epic React” shoes, a trial shoe fitting in the store was combined with a three-minute game.

Before customers started testing sneakers on a treadmill, they created an avatar for themselves. This avatar was controlled by the clients’ running movements and a special button for jumping. In total, participants were invited to explore four worlds while testing new shoes in a game format.

There is no limit to creativity and imagination in gamification. However, retailers should make sure that the elements of the game support the process of shopping, not distract from it.

Gamification as a learning tool

Gamification will also play a significant role in the distance learning process. In the near future, events and trainings will be held with game elements.

For example, companies will be able to set incentives that motivate employees to continue their training, so that employees can move to the next level by accumulating points.

Salesforce, an international provider of enterprise cloud computing solutions, is a prime example of this approach to learning. A special training platform called “Trailhead” has been developed to introduce them to their software in a game form. In the process, students receive glasses and badges as a reward for solving problems.

Gamification approaches are also available for recruitment and training workshops. So, dear colleagues, be creative and let your gaming instincts run wild.