So, "gamification" (the process of engaging customers through contest-based content) has gone mainstream—no surprise when you think about it. After all, Raph Koster, author of A Theory of Fun for Game Design, notes that game mechanics are "rule-based systems/simulations that facilitate and encourage a user to explore and learn...." Isn't that what loyalty marketing's rule-based discipline has been doing for the last 30 years?
Thinking about a few parallels, you'll see why the marriage of gaming and loyalty is so natural:
The game-changer in the adoption of gaming tactics to loyalty programs results from the critical mass of scale. The popularity of entertaining iPhone apps and captivating Facebook games enables marketers to deploy game-based promotions on a scale that registers right on the bottom line. Tens of millions of customers from all demographic segments are playing digital games. So, why not adapt some of loyalty marketing's blend of art and science to engage customers in a fun and entertaining manner?
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