A recent infographic reveals that 7 out of 10 people play video games. Brands are trying to take advantage of this potential gamer of consumers: more and more people are investing in gamification, a technique that aims to use the game mode to create an affinity with the brand, and thereby allow retention and recruitment of new customers.
Let’s take stock of this increasingly popular technique.
GAMIFICATION, THE NEW WAY TO IMPROVE CUSTOMER RETENTION
For some, gamification is just another uptake of customer loyalty. It is based on simple principles, already exploited by most existing customer loyalty programs, namely:
Setting up a reward system
The creation of a federated community around the brand.
It differs from traditional customer loyalty programs in several ways:
Thanks to gambling, it attracts a wider audience than customer loyalty programs, which only target the consumer of the brand.
It is easily addictive because it integrates the world of the user: ability to play with his friends, to challenge them, to compare themselves to them through a ranking system …
Its playfulness makes it easy to attract the sympathy of the user towards the brand, with whom he lives a first good experience.
It fosters a sense of brand identity by strengthening community ties, including through the many interactions allowed between players.
Gamification also has a real advantage for brands, because the rewards given to players can be virtual: accumulation of points to be at the top of a ranking, unlocking a new level of play, virtual gift … come fill the users and replace traditional gift certificates, commercial discounts or other benefits that may be deceptive.
Gamification is therefore an interesting tool in the service of customer loyalty, but not only.
It is also a real asset for brand awareness and the development of their customer portfolio …
One can however wonder about its durability in a market which is already starting to be saturated: it requires that the brands constantly renew the proposed applications to remain in pole position and to avoid that the consumer does not tire …
But it seems that launch new challenges is the key to the success of gamification, so let’s trust him: maybe she’ll finally make us stick to brands?
Interaction, pillar of the customer relationship
The game model is based on an action-reaction principle.
It responds to a demand all the stronger because the advent of social networks has catalyzed interactions between individuals.
The latter are demanding a greater number of interactions that borrow from the game its two main characteristics: immediacy and feedback.
This is why mini-games are probably the future of customer relationships: when Air Baltic develops an interactive game to simplify the collection of customer information, the method appears less intrusive than the usual forms and gives unpublished results .
The game is more efficient when it is doubled rewards.
The game, new challenge
Ubiquitous in society, where the boundaries between the real and virtual world are becoming thinner, gambling is able to take customers from a reality that is often considered too bland: gamification makes it possible to go beyond isolation and uncertainty to provide answers and reassurance.
Similarly, on another sector, by creating a discussion platform for users of products without description published by the Amazon vendor has found a new way to build a community.
By creating a specific discussion area, where users can give advice on the use of the brand, Jeff Bezos’ company has indeed created a space allowing everyone, based on simple capitalization on their experience, to be able to acquire an ambassador status.
A crucial issue for both GAFA and SMEs.
Playing on the chord
The peculiarity of the game is that he speaks to everyone in his emotional singularity by bringing out in him pleasure and emotion.
Game design is a process that should not be overlooked for sectors looking for consumer reengagement such as the banking and insurance sectors, for example.
More than a buzzword, it’s an ability to awaken the customers’ brains that makes sense when it comes to the rush of customer data collection.
The particularism of sectors such as insurance is that customer interactions are not only limited but occur at critical moments.
However, if all the technical means are put in place to make it work, it remains only for companies from all sectors to sublimate these essential moments in order to re-enchant the customer relationship.
“According to a study by Marketly (2016), the most important element sought by a brand in an influencer is its ability to engage and not the number of subscribers.”
Blablacar plays the trust
The linking platform develops its community around a central value: trust.
This example shows how gamification can enhance the credibility of a community and inspire trust between users.
The goal for Blablacar is to animate a real community by carpooling a real human experience.
To inspire confidence, Blablacar attributes to its users levels of experience: beginner, regular, confirmed, expert and ambassador.
These different levels depend on several factors: personal data (email, mobile, preference, photo) which credibility the user’s identity, his or her well-being (positive opinions received, share of positive opinions received) and seniority .
To promote the status of ambassador, Blablacar realizes testimonials of these.
They underline 2 things: on the one hand the confidence that the status gives, on the other hand the access to new opportunities for example the co-creation with the mark.
Samsung Nation pulls out of the game
The Korean giant has chosen to animate its clientele with Samsung Nation its gamified community program.
Samsung’s initiative was motivated by the desire to push the engagement of its fans beyond its corporate site. By dedicating a space to them, the brand shows its customers the interest it has in their commitments.
The Samsung Nation community uses gamification to invite customers to discover the entire Samsung offering.
The community relies on avatars, points, badges, levels, missions and a progress bar.
These elements help to motivate the customer to perform actions such as writing product reviews, viewing videos or participating in forums: all data that value the products.
By launching its community-based gamification platform, Samsung has activated its customer community of 10 million visitors a year on the Internet. The results of Samsung Nation are very positive: Samsung has increased the number of reviews on products by 500%, 66% of visits and has seen a 30% increase in comments. These interactions allowed the brand to lower its online marketing and support costs.
These examples of gamification of a community of clients show that it is a real lever for community engagement. But for badges or statutes to make sense, brands must create a real world by claiming their DNA and values.
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