Try a new and innovative approach to market your product range using gamification and marketing games
Launching new products presents marketers with unique challenges. A new offering in your range is the result of a significant investment of time and capital to bring customers something new. Bringing it to the market may in a sense represent the majority of the hard work being done, but you’re then faced with the eternal challenge: how do you convince potential customers that this new product is something they need or want? Compound that conundrum even further if you’re bringing out a whole new product range.
Product promotion is not an easy game. Ferocious competition means that many markets are at some level of saturation, with numerous competitors looking to take as big a slice of the available pie from one another as possible. With healthy, hungry competitors also launching their own product ranges, how do you make yours stand out from the crowd? How do you persuade your target market to engage with your product?
Ultimately, your offering could be head and shoulders above the competition in terms of utility and performance, but for it to be a commercial success, customers need to see it and understand it. Gamifying your marketing campaign can present an eye-catching approach to showcasing your product range.
Gamification: an innovative product marketing strategy
Gamification takes the playful and interactive elements of games and applies them to tasks and scenarios that we typically don’t associate with play. Fundamentally, if you can make a process more fun, and so bypass some of its more mundane elements, then you can more easily engage with an audience.
Gamification can be incorporated into your marketing strategy throughout the product life cycle. Games can create hype, generate engagement, and capture data to inform future content marketing strategies.
Use gamification to put eyes on a new or existing product
Perhaps the most famous example of this is the M&Ms eye-spy pretzel game. The historically well-marketed confectionary brand rolled out the eye-spy game in 2013 to bring eyes back to their pretzel-flavoured variety they’d released in 2010. This was a simple marketing game where participants would hunt down the lone pretzel hiding in a wall of multi-coloured M&Ms. There were no prizes short of the satisfaction of finding the pretzel, but it reportedly bought the brand 25,000 new Facebook likes, as well as 6,000 shares and 10,000 comments.
While not every company will have the reach or scale to deliver the sort of social numbers M&Ms were able to with their eye-spy pretzel game, it’s important to note what a simple concept it was. It performed incredibly well despite offering no prizes or incentives. It just tapped into people’s natural curiosity and thirst for a challenge.
As well as marketing games designed to spread awareness of a product through social media marketing, you could look to use games at events. If, for example, you were to have launch parties for a product, you could use games that attendees could either access through a QR code on their phones, or on provided tablets. This could be a way of making the launch memorable, as you’d be incorporating experiential marketing to help highlight your product. It would also be an easy way to capture data for potential follow-up campaigns.
Match customers to the right products
Another approach to gamify your product marketing would be to try and match customers to appropriate goods in your range. You could do this through a Product Recommendation Quiz. By tapping into a potential customer’s curiosity, you can save them time researching and shopping around, and use insights into their preferences and needs to help direct them to the most appropriate purchases. This could work just as easily on a website as in a physical store.
This approach has been used to great effect on multiple occasions by beauty brand Sephora. In one particularly good example, prompted by research indicating that shoppers of beauty products sometimes found the process “daunting,” Sephora launched their Swipe it, Shop it platform.
The platform continually refreshes images of specific looks that specific products could be used to achieve, then prompts users to swipe right if they like the look, or swipe left if they don’t. This collects a player’s favourite looks and signposts them to purchase the products needed to recreate them. This borrows familiar elements of dating app Tinder to gamify product recommendations.
Use marketing games for product promotion as part of a web-to-store strategy
It’s no secret that the digital focus of modern retail hasn’t been kind to bricks-and-mortar stores, but this doesn’t mean that they’ve ceased to play a vital role in delivering great customer experiences. On the contrary, a physical presence where you can host your customers allows your teams to use their expert advice and people skills to convert sales. Shops also provide a much needed opportunity to give more in-depth advice to customers, particularly specialist retailers trading in more nuanced, sometimes high-ticket products. Marketing games, used thoughtfully, can play a vital role in driving traffic into stores.
Utilising the Product Recommendation Quiz format through social media and online channels, you could just as easily direct traffic to your physical location. Results from the quizzes could be used to highlight in-store only offers. This would allow you to simultaneously market specific products, help customers make decisions, and also grant your shop team opportunities to maximise potential add-on or complimentary sales. You could even include parameters within the game to account for customers whose needs don’t obviously match up with a specific product the quiz is promoting. For example, instead of recommending a specific type of speaker, their answers from the quiz could suggest that they visit the store to speak to one of your expert team members for a better assessment of what they’re looking for.
Phygital product promotion
Marketing games to promote product ranges aren’t limited to online shopping and directing traffic. You could also incorporate gamification inside stores as a phygital method to highlight specific products. One way of doing this would be to incorporate a Photo Contest into the promotion of a newly launched product or range. You could create an installation in your store related to the launch with a QR code linking to the contest. Instructions would encourage shoppers to take photos by the installation and submit them, with the winners receiving a related prize.
When backed up by a strong social media campaign, this can be a great way to get customers to engage with products in your store. This sort of strategy has the potential to pick up high traffic on social media and create a lot of engagement through the images people produce.
Have the gamification experts on your team
If your business is looking to update their approach to product promotions, be it to market a specific line, a new product range, or even as part of a web-to-store or phygital strategy, gamification could be an innovative and targeted approach to consider.
Save clients time and convert sales by directing them to relevant products with Drimify, the gamification platform that makes creating marketing games simple. Should you need advice with your project, our team of gamification experts will be able to help you on every step of your journey through our range of support packages.