What Actually Is Gamification?

We recently had the opportunity to be a guest blogger for Prevue, a company providing experiential, high-impact experiences for meeting and incentive planners. In addition to guest blogging, we also have the privilege of presenting at upcoming event in Palm Beach - Transforming Meetings Summit. Since we will be pulling back the curtain and showing the attendees the inner workings and behind the scenes details of the gamification and technology being used at the event, we thought it might be good to first discuss what gamification actually is.

Gamification - what does it mean?

Gamification is one of the hottest phrases in the event industry today. We’ve all heard it, but what does it actually mean? Gamification is a concept of applying game mechanics, such as points, badges, and challenges to non-game activities. The success of your game depends on how well the combination of these game mechanics work together and create an overall engaged attendee experience. It is a process to entice your attendees, keep them engaged with your event from before it starts until after it ends, and to help build and strengthen your brand.

While it sometimes does include an actual game to play, gamification is a broad term used to describe methods being employed to attract and engage your audience. It may be simply earning points when attendees engage with the app by posting updates, checking in with sponsors or sessions, or providing feedback. The main reason behind gamification is not just for attendees to have fun, it can be a way for you to achieve your event goals!

There are many types of gamification options available for planners that can be integrated into an event. Some examples include:

  • Earning points
  • Earning badges
  • Winning prizes
  • Answering trivia questions
  • Completing challenges
  • Going on a scavenger hunt
  • Checking in to sessions or sponsors
  • Completing surveys

Adding an individual game into your event does not mean you are covered because you now have “gamification” at your event. If this is just a random game, it will not automatically be successful. You need an implementation plan - a customized gamification plan. All of the pieces of your gamification plan need to become a seamless part of your event, and something that your unique audience will enjoy and embrace as part of the event, not just a gimmicky add-on.

When implemented properly, the concept of gamification is an effective strategy to connect and engage with your attendees, achieve your event goals, and create an overall deeper event experience.