So why should you consider addition gamification to your next meeting or event?
“Gamification is a surefire way to increase activity within your mobile event app and a great way to get attendees to engage with your content and with your brand,” said Graham. “By assigning a point value to specific actions within the app, you are able to encourage your attendees to behave in a way that will enhance their experience and provide you with valuable feedback and insights into your event.”
Graham is quick to point out that planners should always bear in mind their event goals when using gamification. “While gamification certainly adds a fun dimension to the experience, it should also help planners advance their goals. Therefore, points should be assigned to actions that are in line with those goals,” Graham said. “If your goal is to provide enriching content, then point values should be assigned for actions like checking into, rating, or posting to a specific speaking session in the app. If you wish to get feedback about the event, you might wish to assign a higher point value for filling out attendee satisfaction surveys.”
Graham told us about the eLearning Guild, an association for designers, developers, and managers of eLearning, using gamification very successfully at their annual DevLearn Conference in 2014. “Gamification is actually a major component of eLearning, so delegates at DevLearn 2014 were thrilled to see that they could earn points in the app for doing things like posting a status or rating a session,” she said. “This helped increase activity in the app; and engagement was off the charts with an average of 545 in-app actions per user.”
Now that you’re armed with a general idea of gamification and how you might be able to use it at your next event, keep these tips from Graham in mind:
Provide clear instructions: Be sure your attendees understand the “rules of the game.” Your best bet is probably to have a section in the app explaining how gamification works. In a DoubleDutch powered app you will probably want to include this in the “Quick Tips” section.
Up the Ante: Offer a prize (or prizes) to the highest scorer(s). Everyone likes a friendly competition, and when your attendees know there is a prize to be won, that sweetens the pot even more.
Prevent spamming: Sometimes people will get so caught up in the competition that they will start posting in the app simply to get points. One way to prevent that from happening is to select your prize-winner at random from the top-20 high scorers or to wipe the leaderboard clean at the start of each day (for multi-day events) to give new people a shot at winning.
Make it fun!: Gamification should be fun and even if the subject matter of your event is serious, don’t be afraid to get a little goofy. You can announce high scorers as the day progresses, award “achievements” with funny names as attendees pass point-level milestones and get creative with the way you choose to gamify your event.