The Latest Buzzword in Corporate Event Planning Courses: Gamification
Gamification – if you haven’t heard of it before, you’re probably thinking that it’s a made-up word! Don’t worry if you’ve never heard of it. We’re here to tell you what it is and why and how you can use it in your upcoming events!
Your corporate event planning courses will give you all the ins and outs but keep reading for a little taste of gamification!
What Is It?
As you can probably tell, the word gamification comes from the word game. Games are a great way of entertaining and engaging people. Whether they’re video games, apps on your phone, or board games, they hold your attention. We don’t always realize how much time has passed because we’re so focused on the game we are playing! And this is where gamification of events comes in.
There are a lot of different definitions that have been created to describe gamification! Here is ours: Gamification is a tool used by event planners to achieve goals using gaming principles. This means using the entertainment, engagement, and socialization aspects of games and applying them to your events. Gamification activities include introducing points, goals, physical activity, and problem-solving components.
It isn’t about turning your event into one huge game. It’s about managing guest experience. It also isn’t something that needs to be high-tech! You don’t need to spend a bunch of money on advanced technology to include these principles in your events!
Why Use It?
There are many reasons to use gamification. The greatest perk of using gamification is increasing engagement and enjoyment of attendees that lead to your client and their sponsors benefitting. Games ease communication so that guests get to know each other and approach each other without the social awkwardness. It can also create a sense of purpose and trust within a group. It is a great excuse for bringing people together, which can greatly improve their experience.
This isn’t going to work for every event you plan. Consider the goal of your event and then see if incorporating gamification will help you achieve it. If you’re planning a conference where you want attendees to be social and interact with speakers, this is a great tool! If you’re putting on a benefit concert where attendees spend most of the time with their eyes to the stage, gamification doesn’t make much sense.
How Should You Use It?
Take a minute and list out your client’s objectives. What aspect of the event experience are you trying to improve? Engagement, attendance, amusement, and/or socialization? Then, consider the characteristics of the people who will attend the event. What’s the difference between appealing to a younger audience compared to an older one?
Think about the incentive you can use to get your guests motivated to participate in the event. For example, if you’re introducing a points system for asking questions at an event, the person at the end of the day with the most points can receive a coupon or discount from your sponsor. Usually, sponsors are extremely relevant to your audience and you give them a nice promotional push when you involve them.
This isn’t the only way to incorporate gamification into your events. The point is to engage an audience who may have trouble keeping up. While some people love attending annual meetings and conferences, others think of them as a bore. When you apply these principles correctly, your audience will stay awake and engaged despite any preconceptions of having a boring time!
When Should You Use It?
Now that we have covered some of the basics, let’s get into some of the fun stuff! Let’s go through some opportunities where gamification can help you through an amazing event.
Increasing foot traffic and booth interaction
The goal here is to have people participate in the various booths and stations at a convention. A great game for this is a scavenger hunt! You can have a live scoreboard to encourage some friendly competition and you will get your guests to go out and really engage with the stakeholders at the event.
Nothing is worse than having a speaker asking for audience participation be met with a disengaged audience. Using gamification can help encouraging contributions and allow people who might be shy to participate. By using a TweetWall, you can moderate questions and comments while increasing the level of participation. You can also offer a prize to the person with the best question and introduce different polls for people to vote on. There are so many ways that you can help get more audience input with gamification if you have your thinking cap on!
Ice-breakers and networking
Getting people to open up and be more social is not an easy task. And using terrible topic suggestion cards isn’t the best way to get people to open up. Icebreakers are a great way to take the pressure off a networking event. Trivia, two truths and a lie, and other simple games work well. Giving guests challenges that they need to complete in groups can also get people to know each other better.
If you’re looking for some gamification apps to incorporate into your events there are so many to choose from! And there are lots of case studies that you can look over to give you a better understanding of how gamification mechanics can impact your events.
So next time you’re planning a corporate event, think about gamification. Are you going to give it a try?