As social and mobile trends continue to evolve—quickly integrating into wearable technology (smart watches, Google Glass, and the like), gamification will play an increasing role in how marketers connect with their consumers.
In fact, more than 70% of the world’s largest 2,000 companies are expected to deploy at least one gamified application by the end of 2014 (according to Gardner ).
Life Gamified: Redefining In-Store Marketing
As discussed in our article on tech integration , the emergence of wearable computing integrates major emerging trends like social media, mobile, and the rise of big data into one seamless user experience.
Wearable technology makes gamified marketing even more intuitive. The marketing experience further integrates into daily life, changing the way consumers engage with brands.
Since entertainment is one of our working themes here, let’s play with a hypothetical projection of where gamification might lead in a few years. (Who doesn’t love futuristic musings?)
It’s 2016 and you’re one of the 10 million people estimated to own a pair of Google glass. Unsurprisingly, Starbucks is still thriving (they now serve Irish whisky!). You make your morning round to the Starbucks on the corner on your way to work. The moment you step inside, your Starbucks rewards app (currently in existence) activates in the upper right and corner of your virtual glasses desktop.
From purchasing history to how long you stay in the store, this handy little app knows more about your coffee habits than you do. After you purchase your Venti Hazelnut Macchiato and literally watch your rewards rack up out of the corner of your eye, you sit down and whip out your computer.
Starbucks knows that some 45% of people who walk into their stores and sit down are planning to work online. So they (hypothetically, of course) launch a productivity affiliate app that monitors your productivity for you, and allows you to accumulate additional rewards for accomplishing goals. Golden marketing opportunity: they even offer reminders on an afternoon refill deal or an ad to try a new snack product after 90 minutes of productive work time.
Convenient and useful for you—ingenious for them.
In this scenario, Starbucks now has greater power over behavior modification and management, engagement, relationship building, and more.
Technology along these lines is already coming into play, with in-store mobile marketing platforms like SWIRL that offer hyper-localized marketing. It’s so specific, it can geo-target down to which area of the store a customer is standing in.