Gamification is one of the common terminologies you might have come across these days regardless of what industry you belong to, specifically if you are in to SaaS business. The reason why I have mentioned SaaS in specific is because nature of customers in SaaS business is different as compared to any normal service or product business.
In SaaS business you need paying customers as well as potential customers to stick with your website (product) as well as keep coming back again and again. When it comes to engagement, gamification works really well.
What is Gamification?
“Gamification is the craft of deriving all the fun and addicting elements found in games and applying them to real-world or productive activities”. This clearly means that gamification have nothing to do with gaming and it’s not at all about including games in to your website but its more about picking up the addiction element and integrate it within your tool/website, which help pull trigger of your customers and potential customers to make them come back to your website again and again.
Why Gamification is Important for SaaS?
As I said earlier you need your customers to stick with you. At the same time you need to attract potential customers so eventually they convert in to paying customers.
Think about it this way! There are tons and tons of games in your iTunes or Android store. Some of them are free while others are paid but, out of all thousands of games you only play few of them when you are free.
A convenient answer is because you like it, it’s the best time pass or may be because you are addicted to it but if you dive deep in to it you will realize that they want you to perform multiple actions or complete different tasks in such a fun way that you get motivated towards the target.
If you can integrate this level of fun and motivation in to your business, your potential customers will perform actions you want and might convert in to paying customers.
There are many different SaaS businesses that are smartly integrating gamification and earning big money as well as branding and word of mouth. Here are few of the businesses that are my personal favorite.
I love Moz.com because of the fact that they understand gamification really well and have integrated it very smartly. This year in July I attended MozCon 2015 and literally flew to the other part of the world but what many people don’t know that my MozCon ticket was free! Why? Because I moved to Oracle member in the Moz community by gaining 5000 plus points!
I was a paid member a while back but this point game and a free MozCon ticket sold me the MozCon 2016 and I will try my best to be there.
Moz have an amazing community and here I wrote a detailed post about the ideas they are using to engage their community with the brand, retaining their customers as well as converting more and more potential customers in to paying ones.
Treehouse is a virtual training academy that allows anyone to learn code, app development, business and other skills the fun way.
You can choose courses, play quizzes, take tests to earn points and get badges that you can publish on your website to attract potential employers and get paid for your skill. Students choose from various tracks for defined outcomes.
Tracks are broken into manageable chunks, and a tracker shows your progress as you work towards your goals. The more points you earn, the higher your potential salary will be.
The reason why it’s addictive is because this fun and learn system actually allows you to build your skill and get you better in real life.
- Recycle Bank
Another website I really love, this is because they pick the pain point, wrap it with gamification and the results are obviously amazing. According to CrunchBase, the business has received $85.2M in 6 rounds from 11 investors.
The idea is very simple! Website will reward you with points when you complete an interactive feature and the more pledges you will make the more points you will get. Once you have enough points, you can cash them in get great deals from within the websites.
- Engine Yard
Engine Yard is a platform for deploying, scaling, and monitoring applications. Like other complex products they also required a community and for that they include a ZenDesk knowledge base but the level of engagement was very low so they included features like badges and rewards for users to making a contribution to the community.
Today, they can say that the community is in their DNA. Their UGC for its customer’s self-help portal increased drastically which decreases the number of support tickets and demand of support staff.
What’s in it for you?
No matter what business you are in if you set your goals and smartly wrap gamification accordingly, chances are you will not only gather a community around your brand but your customers will stick with you for longer than usual and good possibility to magnetize more clients.
In fact, gamification doesn’t just allow you to attract more customers, but also to engage prospective employees that can help your business flourish. When used in the right way, this latest technique can help you in two ways; lure workforce and entice customers
Above real world examples explain one more thing, gamification is about creating engagement for your brand and not hard selling. You need to inspire your visitors on continuous basis and potential customers will convert automatically, not only that but they will also stick with you for a longer period of time.
As a business or enterprise you need your customers or employees to stick with you to perform desired tasks and become more productive. One solution to applying gamification within enterprises or businesses is GamEffective, an enterprise gamification platform aimed at accelerating sales, customer service and employee training through gamification.
Gamification is definitely a bridge between your objectives and customers as it makes tasks fun and engaging so that they do it by will and with full motivation. Be sure to start experimenting!