Sunday, February 15, 2015

Video Game & Social Media Addictions

Have you ever started a quick game of Angry Birds and thirty minutes later you are promising yourself that this is the last game you will play, only to notice an hour later that you are still playing that same game over and over again.  

First generation videogames, classics from the eighties era, such as Tetris and Pacman earned the nickname “Addictive undefeatables”, due to the fact that the levels were at times so difficult that they were practically impossible to complete and players took the situation as a personal challenge to try to finish all the levels.  In facts most of these games are still popular and addictive even today.
It is becoming more evident that video game developers and software designers are today using modern psychological techniques to get their customers ‘hooked’ onto their products, notable examples are Facebook, Snapchat or even playing a simple yet immersive game like Candy Crush.  Our brains yearn for continuous simulation, even if it’s just a simple reward.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Gamification of Marketing

If you have ever noticed how someone seems to be completely immersed and addicted when playing a video game then you can start to understand how marketers are today exploiting this type of addictive behavior when using games to promote their products.  

Thanks to the internet and smart phones, a new trend in combining games and advertising is taking place, it’s being referred to as Marketing Gamification.  We have had loyalty programs around for ages, on a simple level these schemes were leading the way to today’s Gamification of Marketing.  Loyalty programs used to reward users for brand fidelity such as receiving a coupon every time one shops at a particular supermarket and later using the accumulated points to receive a reward.  Such plans have now become exponentially more complex thanks to modern technology such as the internet and smart phones.  Increasingly games are starting to become an integral part of any elaborate marketing plan.
Marketers are today trying to utilize people’s natural desires for socializing and personal achievement by using rewards, such as awarding virtual currency for players who accomplish desired tasks as part of their marketing plan.  An added advantage of using such techniques is that companies are immediately able to quantify if potential clients are engaging with their brand due to the analytics-driven nature of the process itself.  Rewards received by consumers make them feel more incentivized to proceed with a purchase or continue with further engagement with the same brand.