Gamification: Inject the Fun Back into Business
July 16, 2014
Definition of “Gamification” by Google: the application of typical elements of game playing (e.g. point scoring, competition with others, rules of play) to other areas of activity, typically as an online marketing technique to encourage engagement with a product or service.
Gamification is a big buzz word this year with marketing professionals. Everyone is searching for a way to gamify their customer interactions. Why? To get customers pay attention and actively engage with a product or service.
That sounds like what you want your customers to do, right? Right!
But How Do You Gamify Your Business for Students?
Excellent question. Ideas probably aren’t popping into your head right away. That’s okay. Below are three jump start ideas for gamifying your business to grab the attention of your customers. But we're not gamifying your business just for the fun of it. Any good marketing plan needs to have a reason beyond “it sounded cool.” Each of these suggestions will focus on solving a common problem for class businesses.
PROBLEM 1: Low Class Attendance
(This can really be a hassle in summer and vacation months!)
GAMIFICATION TECHNIQUE: Create a point system based on attendance. For example, each student earns 1 point for attending a class. Points can also be subtracted for absences to keep things interesting.
PROBLEM 2: Bare Minimum Participation
(Keeping students enthusiastic about learning can be difficult.)
GAMIFICATION TECHNIQUE: Create a point system based on participation. Students who work extra hard during class earn a point. This could be for students who finally master a skill or technique they have been struggling with. Or it could be for students who go out of their way to help another student achieve a goal.
PROBLEM 3: Slow Improvement.
(When students don’t level up or show improvement, they get unhappy. Give 'em a little incentive.)
GAMIFICATION TECHNIQUE: Challenge students to a race to the finish! We want students to remain safe, so make sure that the rules don’t encourage unsafe practices.
Option 1: Split students up into groups. Give them a task to achieve by the end of class. Reward points to each group of students for accomplishing the task, with the first group to do it successfully earning the most points, and those students who are not able to perform the task earn fewer or no points at all.
Option 2: Split the skills or techniques being taught into groups. The first student to accomplish each group of skills is awarded a point. At the end of class, the student with the most points wins the challenge.
You might find students more willing to participate if the reward is more tangible like a Pro Shop item, a free class, tickets to an event, a featured post in your newsletter or special recognition on social media.
Gamification in the Workplace.
Let’s face it, employees sometimes need a little inspiration too. Here are a few simple ideas to get your employees to regain their enthusiasm for the workplace!
COACHES PROBLEM: Losing interest or under-performing.
(We all have those days, but if it’s becoming the norm, it might be time to shake things up.)
GAMIFICATION TECHNIQUE: Encourage coaches to compete and get more involved in your business by awarding points to coaches who book private lesson hours, take attendance for all of their classes, put in extra hours helping around the office, mentor new coaches, etc.
OFFICE STAFF PROBLEM: Less than satisfactory customer service.
(Maybe you have noticed your staff having more clashes with customers?)
GAMIFICATION TECHNIQUE: Is this a group effort or a competition?
Option 1: Implement a simple customer service survey that can be submitted online or anonymously at your business. After measuring the initial customer satisfaction rating, set a goal for improvement. Give employees some time to improve (3 months should be plenty), and run the survey again. Reward improvement.
Option 2: Use a reverse raffle system. Start everyone out with the same number of entries. Any time an office staff member provides less than satisfactory customer service, lower their number of entries. If they go above and beyond, let them earn more. At the end of the month or quarter, draw a winner for a special prize, like an earned vacation day or a gift card!
NOW IT'S YOUR TURN!
Have a different problem you need to solve at your business? It's time to think about how a little friendly competition or recognition can help you solve it!