Avoiding Missteps with Gamification Strategies

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Customer Engagement
Customer Experience
Gamification has been a great way for companies to drive both customer and employee engagement. By the end of this year, more than 70 percent of Global 2000 organizations will have at least one gamified application, according to Gartner. But while providing customers with chances to earn points and unlock new opportunities has proven to be an effective approach to strengthening relationships with them, it's also important for decision makers to keep their fingers on the pulse of the customer journey to understand how and why they're using a particular system so that the customer experience remains fresh and relevant.

Gamification has been a great way for companies to drive both customer and employee engagement. By the end of this year, more than 70 percent of Global 2000 organizations will have at least one gamified application, according to Gartner. But while providing customers with chances to earn points and unlock new opportunities has proven to be an effective approach to strengthening relationships with them, it's also important for decision makers to keep their fingers on the pulse of the customer journey to understand how and why they're using a particular system so that the customer experience remains fresh and relevant.Providing customers with games, contests, and challenges shouldn't be a 'build it and they will come' type of approach. "People are always craving new experiences," says Steve Sims, Chief Design Officer at Badgeville. "If the experience isn't managed and programmed over time, that's another area where it can fail if the experience hasn't been sustained."

There are several steps that customer experience leaders can take to ensure that they're delivering the type of experiences customers expect, says Sims. First, understand the nature of the environment involved (mobile, web, interactive). It's also important to know the frequency of user interactions with the platform as well as their personas to develop a better understanding of the level of engagement of different user types along with any roadblocks that may be hampering their experiences and therefore weakening engagement.

Although gamification can also be an effective way to incent and engage customer service agents and other employees, it's also important to remember that it's not for everyone. Some employees are motivated by financial incentives; others by earning opportunities to take on additional responsibilities.

Just as with other aspects of customer strategy, gamification efforts require constant monitoring and fine tuning. If you have approaches that have served your organization well, please share them with us and the 1to1 community.

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EXPERT OPINION