Gamification in business works beyond your marketing strategy. Adding engaging experiences to everyday business processes motivates customers and employees to reach their goals.
The digital transformation of all aspects of business in the past few decades includes gamifying tasks and activities. This is done by introducing elements such as steps, leaderboards, milestones, notifications, and more.
Business gamification has also helped smooth the transition from analog to digitized workplaces by shortening onboarding times and making the changes more rewarding.
Customer loyalty programs, built-in social interactions, and rewards programs harness gamification techniques to improve user experience and increase customer engagement.
In this post, we will discuss:
- The five core business processes
- The benefits of a business gamification strategy
- Examples of how gamification drives innovation in business
- How to start your gamification program
What Are Core Business Processes?
Depending on your products or services, your business’ core processes may differ from our list below. Generally, core business processes are the activities or tasks that align directly with your company goals.
The 5 Core Business Processes:
These are considered core business processes because they are essential for selling goods or services to the customer.
While there may be overlapping in marketing, sales, and customer service, each process has its own areas of expertise. Marketing, sales, and customer service also support clients at different points in the customer journey.
Production and distribution are more distinct as production processes happen in offices, workshops, and factories, while distribution focuses on logistics and delivery.
Innovative companies have successfully incorporated game mechanics into their core processes to improve customer experience and employee engagement.
Before we look into how major brands have done this, we will consider some benefits of gamification technology to bolster business processes.
The Benefits Of A Business Gamification Strategy
Using gamification in marketing produces results such as increased sales, loyalty program memberships, and newsletter sign-ups. But what are the specific, measurable benefits to gamification in other business processes?
Adding game elements to even the most basic tasks and activities can produce positive results that will grow your company sustainably.
Gamification Benefits In Business:
- Makes Goals Clear And Achievable
- Aligns With The Company’s Vision, Mission, And Values
- Improves Employee Productivity
- Encourages Online Participation
- Creates Friendly Competition
- Produces Loyal Customers
- Simplifies Corporate Training
Makes Goals Clear And Achievable
Business gamification can provide objective standards so you can measure performance more efficiently. Setting up key metrics such as sales targets or customer satisfaction surveys (e.g., five-star ratings) helps businesses gain insight into overall performance.
This enables them to focus on areas where improvement is needed most urgently, without relying on subjective observations alone.
An effective business gamification strategy also helps establish pathways for success across different departments and employee levels. It encourages overall team collaboration toward achieving company goals.
When employees have clear and attainable goals, it removes obstacles to “getting the job done.” A successful gamification program lowers stress levels and improves communication within teams.
For instance, if your business handles used car trade-ins, you can create an online quiz to guide the customer through the process of finding the value of their car and their trade-in options.
Aligns With The Company’s Vision, Mission, And Values
The vision, mission, and values relate to company goals and the impact you want your business to have in the market.
Employee onboarding is the first step to introducing new recruits to your company vision, mission, and values. Gamification can be used to make the onboarding process more engaging and memorable.
When employees live up to the values and share the same vision and mission for the company, you will see high employee engagement and growth.
Customers will observe how employees apply these values to business processes. This will create a positive impression of the high standard you set for your company’s products and services.
Improves Employee Productivity
Gamification is a powerful tool to drive employee behaviors. It can also be implemented across business processes to automate certain tasks.
Having well-defined pathways gives each team member set guidelines from which improvements can be consciously measured, creating an environment ripe for growth and development.
Gamified elements break tasks into incremental steps. Something as simple as a checklist or progress bar can provide the intrinsic motivation an employee needs to complete a project.
You can also add extrinsic motivators such as prizes, badges, or awards for achievements. For example, when an employee reaches a milestone, you can reward them with company swag or vouchers.
Encourages Online Participation
Gamification is an invaluable tool for ecommerce businesses. It is quite easy to converse with a customer while they are browsing in your brick-and-mortar store. This is not the case when they are browsing online and can easily be overwhelmed or distracted.
Online stores use gamification techniques to attract and keep customers’ attention. Gamification also helps customers find the desired products and complete their transactions. One of the best examples is how ecommerce businesses using playful product finders to help customers finding the item they really want.
Creates Friendly Competition
Business gamification taps into people’s competitive nature to motivate certain actions and behaviors.
It can be used to create healthy competition between employees or teams by setting a digital leaderboard for reaching a target. This way, remote and office-working employees can keep track of their achievements.
For customers, you can set challenges to encourage higher spending or more frequent visits. Coupling these with rewards is a powerful way to gain more customers. For example, you can use status as a reward by giving customers special titles and privileges if they buy your products and services more frequently.
When people see a desired reward within reach, it increases their engagement with the task at hand.
Nurtures Loyal Customers
Successful gamification in business leads to better customer service. Even internal processes enhanced with game mechanics will improve the customer’s experience of dealing with your company.
For instance, employees who are actively engaged at work and living up to the company’s values will provide customers with excellent service. In other words, your customers will be served better when your employees are happy at work.
Another tried-and-tested way to keep happy customers is to implement a customer loyalty program. Well-designed rewards systems can dramatically increase brand affiliation and keep customers engaged. This is because offering rewards for using your products and services creates a positive impression of your brand. The more value you offer your customers, the more likely they will return and lengthen their visits.
Simplifies Corporate Training
Training employees to perform core business processes well takes time and effort. You trust that the expenses of training resources will produce a greater return once employees apply their new skills.
Gamification is already widely used as an educational tool to increase learner engagement and information retention. Applying gamification concepts to corporate training will reduce the ramp-up time of new employees and save costs.
Employees will enjoy their training much more and build an emotional connection with the company and their colleagues.
We have looked at seven of the benefits of business gamification. Through gamification design, you can take innovative steps to create stronger customer relationships and foster greater employee engagement. This means a gamification plan can help you tie achievable goals directly to core business processes.
The following sections examine case studies of brands innovating their business processes using gamification tools.
The team at Swedish automobile manufacturer Volvo wanted to market a new range of trucks during the Christmas holiday season. They took a targeted approach and decided to focus their marketing efforts on truck drivers only.
The campaign aimed to create awareness of the new truck models and capture leads.
Volvo adopted Brame’s Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution to make a custom game for each day of Advent. Combining Game Concepts with high conversion rates, namely the Memory Game and Guess the Picture, increased awareness.
The Personality Test and Quiz Games were used to encourage customer engagement. The campaign was mainly advertised on social media and in the newsletter.
Volvo employed a digital Advent Calendar to ensure customers came back each day. They saw high engagement (above the benchmark) and satisfactory lead generation (lead-gen) to lay the foundation for future sales.
The innovative vehicle brand SEAT utilized a Personality Test quiz to learn more about its customers and recommend the perfect new SEAT vehicle for their lifestyle.
A salesperson on the floor would usually handle this process. They would ask the customer a series of tried-and-tested questions to paint a picture of their travel needs.
Based on the salesperson’s expert knowledge of the vehicles available and within the customer’s price range, they could recommend the best fit for the customer.
The Personality Test Game Concept worked in many ways to engage the customer and ask qualifying questions on behalf of the sales team.
How A Personality Test Helped Qualify SEAT Customers:
- Customers were motivated to complete the test to find out something about themselves
- They received feedback at the end of the Personality Test, showing them which SEAT vehicle model suits their lifestyle best
- Driven by their curiosity, customers were prompted to fill out the contact form and book a test drive of their ideal vehicle
Adding gamification to production processes can be done in various ways. One way to support production at your company is to encourage employee engagement.
Internal marketing means promoting the brand to the employees. Employees with a strong affiliation with their company tend to produce better work.
Zurich’s electricity provider EWZ usually showed employee appreciation during the holiday season by sending Christmas cards. But the company wanted a way to reward its employees. They also wanted to drive an initiative encouraging employees to use the company intranet more regularly.
EWZ used Brame’s digital Advent Calendar Game Concept, with prizes hidden behind each day’s door. They used the popular 24-day format to tell stories, share advice, and offer incentives.
The game was popular among the employees and led to increased engagement with the company’s intranet. It reinforced the positive image that the company appreciates them.
Consequently, EWZ began planning an advent calendar for the upcoming year.
Kronen Zeitung is one of the largest newspapers in Austria. The media company sought to utilize gamification to increase their readers’ time on articles and create high-quality leads.
The newspaper has an online publication delivering news and entertainment. Reading time is an important determiner of whether the product has successfully been delivered to the customer.
They used content gamification to enrich online distribution. Readers were enticed to test their knowledge of the reading material at hand. Brame’s Quiz Game Concept was customized to ask questions about each article and presented multiple-choice answers.
This led to a more engaged readership and increased newsletter signups. The integrated Quiz Games gained over 5,000 visits, with an average play time of two minutes per game.
Customer Service Innovation
Visana is a Swiss family health insurance company that saw a knowledge gap in its customer profile. The company realized it was missing a major opportunity among its younger clients covered by their parents’ health insurance.
The target group was invited via email to demonstrate their health knowledge by participating in a Swipe quiz. The gamified competition provided prizes to incentivize customers to engage with the topic.
Playing the game also generated zero-party data to supply missing information to Visana’s Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform.
Not only did this campaign inform younger people that their parents’ insurance would no longer cover them in due time, but it also educated them on how health insurance works.
The content in the emails was relevant and helpful and presented in a fun and engaging way.
How To Start Your Gamification Program
Businesses today seek to utilize game design techniques, such as feedback systems and rewards, to motivate employees and engage customers in brand activities.
The ultimate goal of gamification applied to any non-game context is to increase user engagement. Gamification in business can enhance the five core business processes: marketing, sales, production, distribution, and customer service.
If you want to start your business gamification program, there are a few steps to take.
Steps To Start Gamifying Your Business Processes:
- Set clear goals for your gamification program and tie them in with your company’s vision, mission, and values
- Analyze your current business processes and pinpoint areas of improvement
- Brainstorm ideas to incorporate game elements into those areas to increase engagement and smooth out workflows
- Ascertain what types of rewards are most suitable and when they should be awarded
- Create your games and decide where they should be embedded (mini-games on your website, freestanding microsite games, blog post embeds, etc.)
- Set up a system for collecting user data throughout – this will help you improve the experiences, understand your customers and employees better, and populate your CRM
- Track and monitor gameplay for further insights and to measure the success of your campaigns
Starting with the steps above, you can set up an effective gamification strategy for your business. It is essential to know who your target audience is and learn about their motivations. This way, you can direct the games to answer their needs while improving your business processes.