You are doing good business now. The idea behind gamification is that you want your business to be even better. This means utilizing the best of your current practice to motivate existing customers to recognize your brand, participate, and spend more.
A well designed customer gamification program identifies and enables power social media users to become social media brand ambassadors. Using the best practices in the industry, gamification can be turned to a powerful social customer acquisition and activation mechanism.
1. Define the gamification target. Your target determines everything. Understanding the habits of your target will make or break your gamification program.
2. Measure statistics about target. How often does your average customer engage now? What are the statistics divided by type of activity, divided by customer age, location, device usage, product usage?
3. Build gamification achievements based on statistics. Abstract how measurable statistics change over time throughout the customer lifecycle. Example: if your customer matures after 3 purchases, the gamification better award an achievement for 3 purchases. Successful gamification is accomplished by incorporating your practice of your customer lifecycle into achievements.
4. Define gamification progress around achievements and statistics. Progress is not only times when your customer brings in revenue. Make sure to communicate with the customer whenever they touch your brand. Online, on the mobile app, at the store. The gamification should measure and communicate this progress at every single step.
5. Design rich user experience around gamification achievements. “If it ain’t pretty, they ain’t gonna share it.” an old marketer friend of mine used to say. However crude, it’s very true. We have measured effectiveness for gamification programs and it showed a direct relationship between the number of hours spent designing the UI and the participation rates.
6. Build the engagement loop & communication strategy between the user and the rich user experience. Gamification is a reactive process. After all, the concept is based around measuring participation stats for the customer. Make sure your customer knows that they “only need 2 more” to earn the achievement or that they have just “earned it”. These notifications are all perfect opportunities for the customer to respond to the message. Also socially.
7. Extend the 1-1 communication strategy to the community. Those updates that your customer is receiving, they need to go into social media, onto the mobile app. Community activity is what makes the gamification engine run. Social content needs to be: a) socially contextualized b) good looking. Context-sensitive social content is deeply rooted in the design and mechanisms that drive the engagement loop in your gamification scenario. Rule of thumb: the nicer the content, the better the chances your audience will respond and convert.
Remember that the engagement loop needs to be entrenched in tracking mechanisms that will enable your analytical tool to extract the metrics for engagement, social channel activity, and conversions.
Now, go ahead and use the knowledge behind why your business is great to make your business even greater 😀