What Exactly Is Gamification?

Some concepts and terms ring familiar even if you don’t know precisely what they mean. Gamification is a shining example of a word that we hear frequently and we have a general idea about what it stands for. Let’s clear any lingering doubts and explain what this word means and how it works in the real world. Essentially, this term defines the application of game elements to everyday environments for the sake of rewarding people and keeping them entertained. Businesses use Gamification to develop brand loyalty and to keep customers hooked on their product while encouraging them to recommend others.

Gamification and social media

There is nothing wrong with healthy competition and Gamification brilliantly succeeds at bringing out the competitive spirit. Businesses and other organizations try to tap into this human quality, to make people aware of their services and products. Even the U.S. Army uses it as an effective recruitment tool, by encouraging potential recruits to try military training games. Sports and footwear companies do a similar thing, in the form of physical challenges that reward players with points for their achievements.

Regardless of the virtual rewards at stake, gamification also benefits from the fact that people enjoy sharing their accomplishments. It goes hand-in-hand with social media, which provides an effective platform for people to showcase their deeds. Many companies like FruityKing.co.uk encourage customers and visitors to spread the news on social media and even provide them with the tools to do so. Others go a step further and offer various rewards and free stuff to those who complete online challenges and popularize them online.

There’s no Gamification without rewards

Veteran videogame fans, especially those who love the RPG genre know how important rewards are. Role-playing video games and later on MMORPGs owe their tremendous success to the uncanny ability of keeping players hooked with ever better items. In the real world, companies have used this technique to promote their brand and make people feel that there are parts of something special. In order to preserve and increase motivation, they need to come up with ever better rewards.

Starbucks and other companies might offer free drinks to their patrons who achieve various goals in their campaigns. By giving away free stuff, they end up bringing people to their shops, which increases the odds of them spending money here. In the long run, they build brand awareness and consolidate their reputation, especially when they enter new markets.

Not all the rewards offered by businesses through Gamification are actual products or services. Some award the most successful players with badges, which don’t have intrinsic value but help them gain online status. If the community is large enough, this type of incentive can be very strong, as people have a burning desire to move up the social ladder.

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