Using social apps to drive brand engagement
More and more businesses are developing branded applications as part of their marketing programmes, integrating product information with product reviews and even gaming elements to reach consumers. From in-game advertisements to entire games built around brands, engagement through games-based apps takes on multiple forms and presents unique opportunities for marketers.
Social gaming is one of the best mediums that can be leveraged by companies to capture the attention of their audience as well as engage them. Social games are interactive in nature which in turn makes marketing easier as information can be given to customers and awareness about their brand can be created. This interactive mode of social gaming helps not just in promoting and raising awareness of a company’s brand but also in keeping customers engaged for a long time.
The message for marketers should be clear: they need to consider using social game-based apps to build brand engagement, recognition and loyalty. Here are four tips on what brands of all sizes should consider when building their own custom apps.
1. Define Your Goals.
As with every other social strategy marketers employ, success in social gaming engagement starts with a clearly defined goal. Knowing what you want the gaming experience to be will go a long way in helping you decide the right game and type of engagement. You need to build a game that accomplishes your goals while targeting your desired audience. When defining your goals, consider fan growth, consumer engagement, viral growth, revenue generation, coupon or sales promotion and the campaign component (part of broader campaign).When launching a social gaming application you must determine what works best for your brand and overall marketing strategy. Highly engaging and with viral components built in, social games provide the perfect vehicle for fuelling fan growth and building community. They also serve as a perfect vehicle for driving brand awareness, revenue
2. Offer Real-World Rewards.
By linking the points that users earn inside the game to real world rewards (like coupons or gift cards), businesses can give their users more incentives to come back to their apps and spend time earning points. If you’re looking for a leader to follow – or one to borrow ideas from – look no further than McDonald’s. To promote their new collection of sauces, McDonald’s launched an online game, ‘McNuggets Saucy Challenge’, challenging those who dare to test their Chicken McNuggets sauce-dunking skills and win real world rewards. The company incorporated giveaways into their social gaming giving players something tangible to strive for or achieve in a fun and entertaining way.
Remember that you are building a game to engage your social community, not to become the next great video game publishing company. Aware of the growing demand for branded social games, companies specialising in community management tools have made it relatively quick and easy to choose a game, brand it with your look and feel, and launch it online. As long as you don’t need to create your games from scratch, then brandable, traditional games can provide a cost-effective means of offering fun, interactive content to your consumers. Consider partnering with a company with a wide portfolio of social apps which allows you to include your gaming concepts and company information.
If a game is confusing, difficult, or just plain boring, players will likely abandon it. A consumer is more likely to be drawn to your game - and spend more time engaging with it and your brand - if it’s shared on your website or social platform, it’s easy to get started and rules and instructions are kept to a minimum.
To succeed in the age of mobile apps, companies must do more than just launch an app. They need to deliver engaging customer journeys, with compelling and relevant app experiences that build binding relationships with customers. Social gaming is a great way to do that as it adds a fun, engaging layer to any brand. Who doesn’t like playing for a chance to win a prize? Adding social games to any brand will not only promote your business, but build loyalty and engagement.
4. Simplify and Beautify.