On day 1 of the BIA/Kelsey Marketplaces 2010 conference, we heard from Jon Carder, CEO of MojoPages.com, talking about the importance of game mechanics in social systems. It’s a topic I’m especially interested in and I mentioned the importance of “reward systems” in my perfect local media company of 2014 post.
Carder mentioned the following:
- Game mechanics is the new black
- He defined them as “a series of rules and functions that tap into our primal response patterns to drive usage, sales, and /or referrals”.
- He mentioned Foursquare and Groupon as good examples of new apps/sites using game elements.
He suggested a good game system needs four must-have elements (action, goal, scoreboard and reward) and three nice-to-have (competition, clock and social). Here’s how it applies to Foursquare:
- Action: the check-in is the action
- Goal: get the most check-ins
- Scoreboard: you can see total check-ins and unlocked badges
- Reward: unlock badges
- Competition: people compete to become Mayor of a place
- Social: you can broadcast your activities on Facebook and Twitter, telling your friends about your badges/mayorship