Gamification: what’s the buzz?

Gamification was the 2014 event industry buzzword. It doesn’t seem to come up nearly as much anymore when talking with potential or current customers. I assume that is due to the industry’s general consensus and overall experience of low engagement with Gamification. But, proper education has helped to guide the industry on when to, or not to utilize Gamification and how to properly implement the correct format for it to be successful so that it’s not just a buzzword.

Gamification is a broad term. It can be implemented in several different types and formats from scavenger hunts to leaderboards, while utilizing QR codes, photos, iBeacon technology, pedometers, and check-in codes to name a few.

Event Mobile App GamificationWhen investigating whether Gamification is right for your event app and how you’re going to implement this feature, you have to think about why you have an app in the first place. There is one main reason besides networking, revenue generation, and cutting print costs amongst other reasons. That is to deliver event content in a digital format to the palm of your attendee’s hand.

A saying we like to use at Core-apps is “Content is King” and without a good feature set built around a sufficient amount of content, your app will never deliver at its highest usage potential. Apps that suffer from low usage are typically due to lack of and/or insufficient content and marketing. When implemented properly, Gamification can be a great supplement to increase app usage but should not be used as a Band-Aid to entice app usage for lack of useful features and content. App usage games where you receive points for posting to social media, sharing a photo, or rating sessions to top the leaderboard are the focus of some apps where feature rich content takes a back seat. While this type of game can inflate your usage numbers, you have to wonder if it’s because users want to earn points or because you have content that they really want to engage with? Unfortunately, this type of game can also be counter-productive to app usage at the same time but more on that for another day.

Once you have a feature rich app, with sufficient content, and proper marketing in place, you have to think about the Goal behind the Gamification. Some of the most common goals include increased:

  1. App usage
  2. Revenue generation
  3. Floor traffic
  4. Networking

After that you have to think about the proper target to achieve that goal. A common mistake that we see here is creating a game that does not include the largest demographic of participants possible. Games involving social media are an example of this because not every user actively utilizes every social media platform to be able to participate. Also, if you have exhibitors, don’t forget about them as they make up a large amount of your attendance base.

Now that your goals and target audience are determined you will need to choose a format and type of Gamification that aligns your goals to provide the best ROI. This is where Core-apps experience and support excels. We will review your goals to match the type and format of Gamification that fits best with a proper implementation plan to successfully meet those goals. Successful implementation of Gamification provides value for the Attendees, Exhibitors, and Event Organizer. Of course, we also provide robust metrics and stats in order to showcase your gamification ROI.

If you’re interested in event mobile apps and Gamification please contact your Core-apps sales representative or