November 28, 20111 Comment

Gamification 101: In a world where everyone [millennials] gets a trophy, Are you in the game?

It's all the rage!  But what is it exactly?  Lets start with a basic definition:

ga∙mi∙fi∙ca∙tion [gay-muh-fi-kay-shuhn]: integrating game dynamics into your site, service, community, content or campaign, in order to drive participation.

The use of game dynamics into marketing is not new.  It's popularity has grown in recent years as a strategy for influencing and motivating groups of people. Brand marketers are just starting to realize the power it has to improve customer engagement, build loyalty, and incent employees and partners to perform.  In a world where everyone [millennials] gets a trophy, how will your brand engage your customers?

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Conceptually, gamification has the potential to solve a variety of problems outside the business world as well, in areas such as:

  • Health & Wellness: healthcare cost containment, obesity programs, smoking cessation...
  • Education & Training: e-learning, corporate and vocational training, online testing...
  • Public Policy & Government: education reform, climate change, welfare reform.

The technique can encourage people to perform chores that they ordinarily consider boring, such as completing surveys, shopping, filling out tax forms, or reading web sites.

But just like anything in business life you must beware of all the HYPE! Understanding how and why gamification works, in what contexts it is most effective, and what the limits are of this approach will be highly useful in sorting out the useful bits.  In the next few posts I hope to help provide a basic foundation and definition for the concept of gamification.

At its core, gamification applies the mechanics of gaming to non- game activities to change people’s behavior. When used in a business context, gamification is the process of integrating game dynamics (and game mechanics) into a website, business service, online community, content portal, or marketing campaign in order to drive participation and engagement.

Increasing Participation and Engagement
The overall goal of gamification is to engage with your customers and get them to participate, share and interact in some activity or community. A particularly compelling, dynamic, and sustained gamification experience can be used to accomplish a variety of business goals.

Game Mechanics & Game Dynamics
These two terms are closely related and sometimes used interchangeably. For our purposes, game mechanics are the various actions, behaviors, and control mechanisms that are used to “gamify” an activity — the aspects that, taken together, create a compelling, engaging user experience. The compelling, motivational nature of this experience is, in turn, the result of desires and motivations we call game dynamics.

Game mechanics include:

  • Points
  • Levels
  • Challenges
  • Virtual goods and spaces
  • Leaderboards
  • Gifts and charity

Game dynamics include:

  • Reward Status
  • Achievement
  • Self-expression
  • Competition
  • Altruism

The rise of location-based platforms such as Facebook's "Place" feature, Foursquare (social network), and Gowalla have made a number gamification techniques mainstream.

  • Achievement "badges"
  • Achievement levels
  • "leader boards"
  • A progress bar or other visual meter to indicate how close people are to completing a task a company is trying to encourage, such as completing a social networking profile or earning a frequent shopper loyalty award.
  • Virtual currency
  • Systems for awarding, redeeming, trading, gifting, and otherwise exchanging points
  • Challenges between users
  • Embedding small casual games within other activities.

Humans have been playing games in various forms since the days of the caveman, and competition is deeply ingrained in the human psyche. Given this wide acceptance of gaming and the emergence of the internet, people have become more open to game mechanics in other parts of their lives. As a result, “gamification” is becoming a powerful tool that organizations teach, persuade, and motivate people.

Whether it is Frequent Flyer Programs, Samsung Nation, Nike and iPod's Nike+ or Starbucks or American Express & Foursquare we all at play. 

[Sources: October 2007, Bunchball; September 2010, Badgeville, Beyond Gamification: 7 Core Concepts for Creating Compelling Products]

Gamification 101: In a world where everyone [millennials] gets a trophy, Are you in the game? via @jpenabickley

August 22, 2011No Comments

on: google+ games

After a two week launch frenzy, ( google+ platform blog for developers blog, adding google posts to search results on google) , Google wants people to spend even more time using G+ by giving it richer content – starting by adding a separate Games stream.

Screen shot 2011-08-22 at 9.54.48 AM
 

The initial set of games includes, the addictive, Angry Birds by, Rovio, PopCap's Bejeweled, and Zynga's Poker – and it’s attracting big developers like EA with a sweet new revenue model. Google only takes 5% of game revenues, as opposed to Facebook which takes 30%.  

But you have to ask yourself, with such a tiny slice of the social market, compared to Facebook's huge slice of the pie, what brought those big name game developers to the fledgling network? Could it be that G+ has a different audience than facebook's young social gamers? 

Have you played yet? I found it easy and fun.

If you’re a developer interested in building games for Google+, you can learn more on the new Google+ developer blog.

on: google+ games via @jpenabickley

January 29, 20112 Comments

on: dexter’s interactive video game

This is a second home run for team dexter. First it was the Find Dexter.  This crime solving video game is something a bit more sophisticated and just as fun.

on: dexter’s interactive video game via @jpenabickley

October 27, 2010No Comments

on: fast fuels danger. danger makes legend

Adidas does a fantastic job of galvanizing its Facebook followers into action with a new turn-based game challenging players to capture big soccer cities.

Connecting via Facebook, players are launched into head-to-head battle with members of the adidas Football online community. Once a player picks their city, they are transported to a Google Maps-style view of the urban sprawl, divided into hundreds of segmented areas. It is up to the gamer to then claim these territories in text-based, one-on-one battles by attacking the space-holder with a choice of three skills, then defending the spot from new challengers with three blocking moves.

More than 3,000 players were using the game prior to its official launch via the adidas Football wall and its 2.3m followers this week.

Check out the site: http://www.adidas.com/dangermakeslegend

[via contagious]

on: fast fuels danger. danger makes legend via @jpenabickley

October 27, 2010No Comments

on: fast fuels danger. danger makes legend

Adidas does a fantastic job of galvanizing its Facebook followers into action with a new turn-based game challenging players to capture big soccer cities.

Connecting via Facebook, players are launched into head-to-head battle with members of the adidas Football online community. Once a player picks their city, they are transported to a Google Maps-style view of the urban sprawl, divided into hundreds of segmented areas. It is up to the gamer to then claim these territories in text-based, one-on-one battles by attacking the space-holder with a choice of three skills, then defending the spot from new challengers with three blocking moves.

More than 3,000 players were using the game prior to its official launch via the adidas Football wall and its 2.3m followers this week.

Check out the site: http://www.adidas.com/dangermakeslegend

[via contagious]

on: fast fuels danger. danger makes legend via @jpenabickley

June 14, 2010No Comments

on: blur’s eye catching ads

I love this spot! A simple idea that speaks to all gamers. There is racing for kids and now there is Blur. "Race Like A Big Boy"

on: blur’s eye catching ads via @jpenabickley

May 21, 2010No Comments

on: football boots and your future

This is one to watch! This is the first stage of a Nike journey that will ultimately see fans around the world write their own future through experiences that put them at the center of the action. In June, fans will be able to live like their heroes through a unique experience on nikefootball.com that generates ripple videos and visuals from their own photos and information, placing them at the center stage.

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=11896489&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=&fullscreen=1

Write The Future from Nalden on Vimeo.

It was directed by renowned Hollywood director and producer Alejandro G. Iñarritu (21 Grams, Babel).
Footballers can use this creative to build their own Facebook campaign to get noticed and selected for “The Chance” – an elite Nike Academy football camp in partnership with the Barclays Premier League in England that allows players to get scouted and get noticed at the highest level of the game.

This is epic!

on: football boots and your future via @jpenabickley

May 21, 2010No Comments

on: football boots and your future

This is one to watch! This is the first stage of a Nike journey that will ultimately see fans around the world write their own future through experiences that put them at the center of the action. In June, fans will be able to live like their heroes through a unique experience on nikefootball.com that generates ripple videos and visuals from their own photos and information, placing them at the center stage.

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=11896489&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=&fullscreen=1

Write The Future from Nalden on Vimeo.

It was directed by renowned Hollywood director and producer Alejandro G. Iñarritu (21 Grams, Babel).
Footballers can use this creative to build their own Facebook campaign to get noticed and selected for “The Chance” – an elite Nike Academy football camp in partnership with the Barclays Premier League in England that allows players to get scouted and get noticed at the highest level of the game.

This is epic!

on: football boots and your future via @jpenabickley

September 12, 2009No Comments

ON: The The Beatles – Rock Band

When have you seen any piece of technology fuse one generation of people to another in a way that they can all actively participate in one mission? Its a rare occurrence. I found that fusion with The Beatles: Rock Band.  I had to keep myself from spontaneously belting out "All You Need is Love..." in a room full of people. 

My parents still reminisce about watching the Beatles on Ed Sullivan Show.

http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docid=-6963424931484533250&hl=en&fs=true

Now with The Beatles: Rock Band, my parents can sing and share the Beatles with their grandchildren on just about any game console.  The cross over in technology and music is one of the most fascinating parts of this new generation of Beatles' releases.  

The one thing I love about The Beatles: Rock Band is that it allows you to pick up the guitar, bass, mic
or drums and experience The Beatles catalogue of music
through a global game of karaoke that takes players on a journey through the legacy and
evolution of the band’s legendary career.

This is also the only place you can get The Beatles music for download onto a digital device. If you looking to have some quality family time this winter, I highly recommend
The Beatles: Rock Band.


ON: The The Beatles – Rock Band via @jpenabickley

September 12, 2009No Comments

ON: The The Beatles – Rock Band

When have you seen any piece of technology fuse one generation of people to another in a way that they can all actively participate in one mission? Its a rare occurrence. I found that fusion with The Beatles: Rock Band.  I had to keep myself from spontaneously belting out "All You Need is Love..." in a room full of people. 

My parents still reminisce about watching the Beatles on Ed Sullivan Show.

http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docid=-6963424931484533250&hl=en&fs=true

Now with The Beatles: Rock Band, my parents can sing and share the Beatles with their grandchildren on just about any game console.  The cross over in technology and music is one of the most fascinating parts of this new generation of Beatles' releases.  

The one thing I love about The Beatles: Rock Band is that it allows you to pick up the guitar, bass, mic
or drums and experience The Beatles catalogue of music
through a global game of karaoke that takes players on a journey through the legacy and
evolution of the band’s legendary career.

This is also the only place you can get The Beatles music for download onto a digital device. If you looking to have some quality family time this winter, I highly recommend
The Beatles: Rock Band.


ON: The The Beatles – Rock Band via @jpenabickley
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