Herman Trend Alert: Gamifying Small Business Marketing

Herman Trend Alert: Gamifying Small Business Marketing

Old and young alike, human beings love to play games. It's in our DNA.

Like most people, I love to play games – maybe to a fault? And I know I have a lot of company. In fact, there are agencies being established every day to help marketers create workable games that will engage their customers – and employees – at deeper levels. Old and young alike, human beings love to play games. It’s in our DNA.

Global Gamification is Growing Fast
The global market for gamification is growing exponentially. In fact, between 2018 and 2024, the market is expected to burgeon from $6.8 billion USD to $40 billion USD – an almost 7-fold increase. Moreover, a marketing agency in the United Kingdom, Reflect Digital, reported that while 58 percent of shoppers said they are not influenced by traditional advertising, 60 percent of these same customers said they are more likely to buy from a company that engages them with games.

Games are Very Engaging
Unlike other short-lived marketing tactics, gamification marketing has greater staying power. While 60 percent of the people polled reported they were likely to buy from a company they could “play” with, a whopping 86 percent would probably buy if they had previously participated in games with the brand.

Best Practices in Email Marketing Gamification
By teasing about Gamification in your subject line, your email is 30 percent more likely to be opened. But gamification can also be used to increase click-throughs and purchases. Before I wrote this article, I did not know about digital scratch-off discounts or online scavenger hunts. It is exciiting to think that these games are available to small and medium size businesses.

People Love to Save
Whenever I receive an email from a preferred vendor offering a decent percentage off, I will typically open the email. Seeing a scratch-off coupon for one of multiple discounts is even more intriguing. Upon clicking the scratch-off coupon, the consumer may be redirected to a website with the technology to show them a “scratchable surface” they can actively remove or click to reveal their discount. Offering the chance to actually save at a higher rate is a serious incentive for me and many other shoppers.

Seek and Find Scavenger Hunts
Just like the games for kids challenging them to find camouflaged objects, so have some of the cooking magazines regularly used “look and find” game and offered readers chances to win prizes. Some online retailers take a similar approach by hiding small icons within their websites. When a customer finds the picture, they can click on it to see a pop-up coupon or an entry form for a prize.

Personality Quizzes are Fun
Online personality quizzes give consumers opportunities to see which celebrity they are most like. Posting these quizzes on social media works, especially when you pair the answers with consumable goods, like coffee, chocolate, or other hand-crafted edibles. People want to believe they are like the celebrities they follow.

Instant Win Sweepstakes are Enticing
Right now, American Airlines is running an online sweepstakes with an instant win opportunity to promote their 40th anniversary. The prize is 1 million AAdvantage Airline miles. Passenger promotions are nothing new, but the chance to win that many miles has passengers returning daily to “spin the globe.” Many winners of sweepstakes continue and become loyal shoppers. Instant win emails give readers the rush of finding out if they won right away, which in turn, encourages daily email openings with the possibility of winning.

Special thanks to Linsey Knerl, a contributing writer for HP¨ Tech@Work for her coverage of this valuable topic.

© Copyright 1998-2021 by The Herman Group, Inc. – reproduction for publication is encouraged, with the following attribution: From “The Herman Trend Alert,” by Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurist. 336-210-3548 or http://www.hermangroup.com. To sign up, visit https://www.HermanTrendAlert.com. The Herman Trend Alert is a trademark of The Herman Group, Inc.” 

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