Gamification is a strategy that is really grabbing attention in terms of increasing brand engagement. Earning points, badges and awards are becoming common place in many loyalty strategies. We've seen it done in many circumstances and I even talk about how gaming elements could be added to incentive programs. Could you add gaming elements to a traditional website? The people over at Earn Mojo seem to thing it can be done.
A couple of weeks ago I got connected with Clinton Bonner from Earn Mojo, a tech startup looking to turn website surfing into a game. What is Mojo? Aside from that magical something that makes Austin Powers tick, Earn Mojo attempts to add a game layer to the web surfing experience. For example, if you visit a certain web page or visit a site on a certain day, you could earn a badge. Follow that company or website owner on Twitter? Earn another badge. Each badge is worth a certain amount of points. As a result, your website viewers are not only digging into your website further but also trying to dig harder than your other viewers.
In essence, lowering your website bounce rate could be a game for your website visitors.
You may have noticed this happening on this site over the last week. If you visited my site on Super Bowl Sunday, you could've earned the "Go Pack Go" badge, a tribute to the Green Bay Packers worth 10 points. First time visitor? Then you earn a "Rookie" badge with an image from the movie "Rookie of the Year" embedded on it. By visiting the "Learn More" button on the Mojo popup, you'll visit the Brain Wads badge page with a list of badges that one could earn.
The catch? You have to sign up for an EarnMojo account with either your Facebook or Twitter profile. This allows your visit rate to be tracked and badges awarded appropriately. This sign in will help you not only earn badges on my site but also earn badges on other sites that have a Mojo plugin.
In order for this program - or any reward program - to succeed is clear communication. Your users/players/gamers have to know what actions they have to take in order to succeed. Not only do those objectives need to be clearly defined, they have to be attainable. Rewards need to be able to be earned fairly quickly but also able to be banked over time to earn even higher rankings. In other words, "Leveling Up" is something that shouldn't take a user a few months to achieve.
Over the next couple of months, I'll see how Mojo affects my site traffic in regards to visitor loyalty, bounce rate, page views and time spent on site. Eventually I may even create a page for the "Rules of the Game." I'll keep you all posted on my results.
What do you think of Earn Mojo? Could websites be "gamified?"
- What's up with Mojo (uptownflavor.com)
- As websites become games, understand the trend with the Gamification Encyclopedia (thenextweb.com)
- Can't Play, Won't Play [Ideas] (kotaku.com)