Reflections on using Rise to support conference-based gamification

This is a guest blog from:

Fiona MacNeill, Learning Technologies Adviser, University of Brighton and UCISA Digital Capabilities committee member. AboutMe: http://about.me/fmacneill Twitter: @fmacneill

In early June I had the pleasure of implementing a conference-wide gamification activity in support of the UCISA Digital Capabilities event. The event took place at MediaCity, Salford; a vibrant and engaging venue for an event stocked-full of innovative ideas. The event focused on showcasing successful practices for supporting academic staff and learners in their use of technology within further and higher education. Another goal of the event was to highlight findings from the recent Digital Capabilities survey. So when a member of the event organising committee, Iain Cameron (University of Aberdeen, and UCISA Digital Capabilities committee), mentioned the idea of a Twitter selfie (or Twelfie) competition as part of the proceedings; Rise immediately came to my mind as the right tool for the job! I had encountered Rise before at a demo at the International Confex event in 2013 and then again during the Mahara 2014 Hui held at the University of Brighton.

The rules of the game were simple and already outlined for me by the organisers. One point was awarded for original selfies; @mentions; and retweets featuring the #udigcap hashtag. Two points were awarded to reward the befriending behaviours needed to: take selfies with another delegate; take selfies with a speaker; and take selfies with organisers. Three points were awarded for imaginative selfies; selfies with passing celebrities who work or visit the television studios of MediaCity; and a selfie with a famous landmark. Although the game was simple, we entered into it with a sense of playfulness, completed by my donning the literal udig-Cap on my head, to signify my position as the twelfie official! Here’s the photo evidence

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Benefits

Observed positive effects of using Rise Leaderboard:

  • Rise really stoked attendee engagement via Twitter. There were around 90 tweets that included twelfies. Overall, there were almost 1200 tweets related to the event, many of which were a direct result of attendees taking part in the Leaderboard.

TweetFeed

  • The competition called for attendees to take photos of themselves with other attendees, speakers and celebrities. This encouraged both in-person and online engagement.

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  • The twelfie competition promoted a sense of fun and resulted in crowdsourced documentation of the event proceedings. The documentation is now archived as a Storify
    • The competition boosted discursive engagement and publicised the twitter feed prior to the event. This was largely achieved by some pre-conference challenges where attendees were asked to take engaging photographs of their journey to the conference.

TweetFeedwphoto2

Top tips for using Rise in a conference situation

  1. Our photo-based metrics meant that we had to do a lot of manual scoring. I suggest using a wider variety of metrics, including a mixture of automatic metrics derived from twitter polling and manual metrics.
  2. I recommend linking a Google doc to the active leaderboard to enable simpler player addition and
  3. Limit the number of times a certain metric can be scored. We found that some of the twelfies became repetitive, as there was not a limit on the number of times that a twelfie could be scored.
    • Include some wildcard activities to promote positive conference behaviour:
      • g. tweet and tag someone whom you met at lunchtime (with their permission);
      • engage in the conference treasure hunt and tweet what you found etc.
  1. Take greater advantage of the need for the human superviser, or games-master, and consider using them to lead tweet-ups of certain topics raised during the event. These could also have point-awarding options.
  2. Consider day-by-day scoring and options for remote attendees and second day attendees.
  3. Points for @mentions of anything other than the conference hashtag, can affect the quality of tweets’ written content due to the character limit. Best to keep it to one @mention metric.
    Add players in advance of the conference, if possible.
  4. Having clearly defined board release times was a good strategy and led to a sense of anticipation, e.g. breaks worked well as times to release and show the updated leaderboard. Leave at least 10 minutes for the polls to complete and to release the board. I owe this idea to Katie Piatt (University of Brighton), who used this strategy to great effect at the 2014 Mahara Hui.

Future ideas

As I contemplate gamification at the next iteration of the Digital Capabilities event I have been considering how the competitive element could be developed further. Here are a few ideas, although I won’t go into specifics, as I don’t want to give the game away in advance!

  • Make awards unexpected – as Daniel Pink, explains in his 2010 book, Drive expected extrinsic rewards can negatively affect performance (pp. 63-70). Therefore adding some unexpected rewards for completed tasks could add value. However these rewards will not be itemised on the rules list, so a disclaimer about judge discretion may be helpful!
  • Reward introverts as well as extroverts – one of the best conferences that I have ever attended was Eyeo Festival based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA (http://eyeofestival.com). Eyeo is an awe-inspiring event focusing on data visualisation, interactivity and maker ethics. However in the midst of all the flashy stuff, in the two years that I attended they had quiet spaces where one could engage in puzzles and inventions related to the event, sans supervision or sales influence. This was an invaluable opportunity to play and learn. Having an area in a conference like this provides time for time-out and inspiration as well as hidden scoring opportunities!
  • An idea inspired by Jane McGonigal’s book, Reality is Broken (2012): we allow attendees to +1 each other. This is like an in-person analogy of a “favorite” star or a “like” thumbs-up, but because it is real, perhaps it means even more within the context of the event. I like the idea of using physical +1s (think cardboard cutouts the size of a plate) which could become the subject of a selfie; a nice option for camera shy attendees.
  • Finally this is an idea that I owe to Pete Jenkins (http://gamificationplus.uk), who suggested making the next iteration of our competition, a team-based activity. Rise Leaderboard can support this mode of use. The concept is that player interest will be more sustained if they are contributing to a group effort, as opposed to seeing individuals rapidly ascend up the leaderboard and losing the will to compete due to very high leading scores. In the team model points can still be awarded individually for small activities and these can contribute to the collective team score.

Well, I for one am excited about the next Digital Capabilities event!

References

McGonigal, J. (2012). Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World. London: Vintage.

Pink, D. H. (2010). Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us. Edinburgh: Canongate Books.

Telfest 2015 conference uses Rise to enhance conference participation and crowd-source content on social media for non-attendees

This is a guest post by Farzana Latif, posted first on 29th Sept 2015 here

During September 2015’s TELFest (a week long festival consisting of workshops, discussions and drop-in sessions related to Technology Enhanced Learning) we introduced a leaderboard to enhance participation throughout the event, and to encourage the use social media to share experiences amongst colleagues that were unable to attend. Having experienced the leaderboard at the UCISA Spotlight on Capabilities Conference in June, I was interested in using it to introduce ideas related to Gamification, and bring an extra element of fun, to TELFest. The leaderboard is generated by a website called rise.global, which automatically calculates the scores for tweets that contain a specific hashtag, and, following some pointers from Fiona MacNeil who had set it up for the UCISA event, I set up a leaderboard for TELFest. Given the aims behind using the leaderboard, I decided that points should be primarily awarded for tweeting with the #TELFest hashtag and there were additional points for attending drop in sessions and tweeting TELfie’s (TELfest selfies). Below is a breakdown of the points that could be earned:

Tweets with the #TELFest hashtag 1 point
Being Mentioned by someone else 2 points
Having your  #TELFest Posts Retweeted 3 points
Tweeting a TELFie with the hashtag  #TELFest (TELFest, Selfie) 3 points
Attending a drop in session 5 points

Each day we saw the top tweeters changing positions and there was healthy competition amongst TELFest participants.

To keep tweeters motivated, automated tweets were sent out every evening, informing them of their position on the leaderboard.

Twitter activity increased significantly compared to September 2014, there was a tenfold increase in the overall number tweets, a tripling of the number of tweeters and, on the Friday, TELFest trended in the Sheffield area, meaning that it was promoted to local users on the main twitter interface.


An additional benefit of promoting the use of Twitter through the leaderboard was that it helped to capture the variety of views and opinions shared by participants during the event. We were then able to use the tweets to create daily blog posts summarising these discussions using Storify, allowing us to produce a record of the day’s events for participants to look back on and to give some insight into the discussions for those unable to attend.

While the leaderboard was highlighted during the Gamification session as an example of a method to encourage participation and motivate learners, it is hard to say whether, in this case, the leaderboard led to an objective increase in Twitter usage. Early feedback indicates that its’ introduction did motivate some people to tweet more than they might ordinarily, yet others stated that they were unaware of the board. Another reason why the increase in the use of Twitter at TELFest this year cannot be solely attributed to the leaderboard is that we integrated Twitter directly into some of the workshops. It is however clear that the leaderboard did not appear to influence the number of colleagues attending drop-in sessions.
We closed the board on Friday at 12pm and as a token gesture awarded chocolate medal to colleagues that were top of the board – congratulations to Gary, Nik and Maria.


Below is a screenshot of the final top 20 for the leaderboard:

This blog has been verified by Rise: Rd886fcb9534f0f3e25d5be49b850a9bc

Rise launch Top 100 UK Universities on Social Media

September approaches and brings with it the start of the new term. Some of you may be off to University for the first time, some returning and some of you may be sending children off, with a spring in their step and your coin in their back pocket. Or perhaps you work in a University and preparations for the new influx of students are well under way. Either way, the start of the new term is upon us.

Since the changes in financing a degree, Universities know that reputation has become more important than ever. Higher Education marketing departments work overtime, as competition for every student becomes ever more intense. Many Universities are using their online and social media platforms to increase their influence and add value to their brand, some to amazing effect.

This month Rise launches the Top 100 UK Universities on Social Media leaderboard. Want to know who in Higher Education is getting it right on social media? We’ll be updating the list monthly and you can follow the ScoreBook using the follow button, getting notifications directly to your email.

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This month’s most influential UK University on social media.

This month’s leaderboard makes for interesting reading, the top spot going to to the world famous Cambridge. However, it’s interesting to see their Oxbridge companion, Oxford, coming in somewhat behind them at in at number 13. Work to be done perhaps?

We use Klout scores to rank these seats of higher learning. Klout takes into account social media activity and engagement across many social networks including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn and Instagram. If we’ve left your organisation out from this list and you would like to be included, please send an email to support@rise.global, let us know your Twitter handle and we will gladly add you to the scores for next month.

Interested in how influential you are on social media compared to other users? Join Rise’s Online Influencer board and get a weekly personal scorecard of how well you are doing on social media.

 

 

 

Rise launches The Premier League Players Power 100

August is drawing to a close and to some, that can only mean one thing; the start of the 2015/16 English Premier League football season. And so begins nine months of action on the pitch and just as much, if not more, interest in the game off the pitch. From the money taken on the gates every week to sponsorship deals, football is big business. Players are worshipped and berated by fans in equal measure, but either way you can’t deny these men hold huge amounts of sway with the football watching pubic.

But does how they perform on the pitch have any direct impact on their level of influence off it?  To monitor the rise (and fall) of the online influence of those playing in the EPL, Rise are proud to announce the launch of The Premier League Players Power 100.  We will be monitoring the online influence ranking of every player and can’t wait to see how their performance with the ball affects their social media influence this season.

This week’s board makes for interesting reading already, with an unsurprising top place going to football’s richest player Wayne Rooney. All the big club names are represented in the top 10; Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool. But so is current number 19 position Sunderland. Jermaine Defoe is clearly making an online name for himself. Great exposure for him, but also for his bottom of the league club.

You can follow the Premier League Power 100 and get weekly notifications of who’s influencing social media this week. Think you’re an influential football fan? Why not join our Most Influential Fans board and see how you rank against the big names, and each other?

 

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GOP Candidates – who’s who and who’s influencing online

Unless you’ve been hiding under a media rock, you can’t have failed to notice the amount of press coverage about the upcoming 2016 US Presidential Elections.  The Republican Party or Grand Old Party (GOP) has a colourful list of candidates vying for a nomination as their party’s presidential candidate.

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These 17 men and women now have a little over a year to talk to the people, to reach out, state their goals and communicate why it is they should run the most powerful country in the world.

The use of Social Media will be more important than ever in reaching out to and speaking directly with the electorate. While there will always be room for for traditional campaign trail activities, 2016 will see the most digitally focussed campaigns yet. How candidates are perceived online and the influence they hold will be just as important as the speeches they give, the hands they shake or the babies they kiss.

This is why we are launching the The GOP Candidates Social Media Power Board. We will be monitoring the online influence of the candidates with a weekly release of this board and can’t wait to see how this correlates with their popularity in the polls. You can follow the board and get weekly notifications of who in the race is rising and who’s falling in their online social media influence.

Interested in how much influence you have online? Why not join our Online Influencer Board and see how you compare to your peers?

Manchester City is the most influential premier league football club

Screenshot 2015-07-31 13.02.17With just a few days to go to the start of the 2015 season we announce the most influential football clubs in the Premier League according to social media influence scorekeeper, Klout.

There are some surprises in the list:

We’ll be updating the list on a weekly basis. It’ll be interesting to see how the clubs’ success on the pitch translates into social media influence off it.

Rise launches new monthly index of UK Councils Social Media Performance

Rise.global, the app that gives you your own statistical release service, today launched a new monthly index of UK Council’s Social Media performance.

It initially uses the online “influence score” service Klout to track individual social media performance across all UK councils and provide a comparative ranking. Over time, further statistics will be included in the ranking, decided in conjunction with the councils themselves.

Rise’s CEO, a social media expert and former Wandsworth borough councillor himself, Toby Beresford said “I believe the time has come for local governments to fully embrace social media as a tool for fast, direct and transparent communication with the people they serve. By producing this monthly report we aim to support councils with accurate and relevant statistics as they transition to increasingly effective use of social media. We see the town of Jun in Spain as a trailblazer (Guardian article – 2 Jul 2015). By providing each of their elected officials and front line staff with Twitter accounts together with training – the town of Jun have reduced communications friction between citizen and public servant. This has led to greater engagement with and a sense of ownership of public services, both much needed here in Britain.”

The town of Jun recently made headlines as it has publicly ensured its staff from street cleaners to police officers have Twitter, local residents can register their Twitter accounts with the council so ensuring their tweets and questions are responded to appropriately. Everyone can get free training.

Guy Stephens, the social customer service guru said,I’m delighted to see Rise taking the initiative to produce this monthly report. Without comparative statistical reporting, it’s all too easy for the excellent work that social  customer service departments do, to go unrecognised. My hope is that this will not only highlight excellent performance, but also prompt decision makers to increase their investment in social customer service and digital inclusion programs.”

For more details related to this press release and to arrange photo opportunties please contact:

Lisa Savage
Head of Communications
Rise.global
lisa@rise.global

London tops Las Vegas, New York and L.A. as the most desirable travel destination for Twitter users

PRESS RELEASE

Monday 6 July 2015, 1pm London

London has come out top in a new report of Top 1000 Travel Destinations on Twitter published by Rise.global, the scorekeeping platform.

The report tracks over 1000 tourist boards for both individual cities and countries in terms of their worldwide following on social network Twitter. Each tourist board is ranked according to number of followers, the more followers a tourist board’s twitter channel has, the higher the rank.

Toby Beresford, CEO of Rise.global said “maintaining an active social media channel demonstrates the vibrancy of demand for visits to a particular location. By providing an interesting flow of content the top tourist boards have managed to grow and maintain their own audience of travellers keen to visit. Social media channels are an excellent way for a tourist board to engage with potential visitors 365 days a year.”

In the report Visit London tops the chart with over 340,000 followers leaving it’s closest competitors, Vegas and I Love New York behind with around 285,000 followers each.

Rise’s Travel Sector specialist, Nick Shah said, “travel has always been a popular section within traditional news media, it’s no surprise that it creates great interest on social media too. This Rise Report is a great way for tourist boards to see where they stand, and see what work they need to do to keep up in the global race for tourist attention.”

The report also shows that Visit Britain has more followers than Visit Phillipines and Tourism Australia, giving the UK the coveted title of most popular country on Twitter.

Just scraping into the list is the 1000th tourist board – Experience Haiti. With just 190 followers, the country clearly has some way to go to engender the same excitement on social media as the leaders.

Rise offers a tracking service for Tourist Boards (and others) seeking to grow their Twitter reach, called the “Twitter Followers Club”. The club provides a free weekly personalised report tracking growth in followers that week and comparing rate of growth with others. To join the club visit https://www.rise.global/twitter-followers-club

To see the full report visit www.rise.global/touristboards

To find out more about Rise and sign up for free membership of the online performance tracking community, go to: www.rise.global

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/risedotglobal

Twitter: https://twitter.com/risedotglobal

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/2734321

For press and media enquiries contact:

Toby Beresford

+44 203 286 1568

toby@rise.global

London Hackathon leads to innovative digital solution for UN

Press Release on: 19 March 2015

Hackathon picture

A transformative company is rethinking United Nations social media strategies with an intelligent software platform that employs gamification techniques. Smart, social and performance oriented, Rise powers the recently launched UN Social 500 leaderboard which is used to recognise, amplify and encourage UN staff to harness the power of social media.

Toby Beresford, Rise CEO said, “We are beyond honoured to contribute to what is undoubtedly the world’s most recognised organisation. Social media is an incredibly powerful tool and through UN Social 500, we’re helping the United Nations make the most of online opportunities to engage with the world.”

In conjunction with social analytics ranking engine Klout, Rise has developed the UN Social 500 website to honour the top social media influencers within the United Nations. Drawing on data from multiple channels, Klout issues individual social media account scores. Rise then provides personal tracking over time, comparative benchmarking with peers and an overview of which UN social media butterflies have been most successful in spreading their wings.

unsocial500 screenshot

The initial idea came to light in the wake of the UN Influx hackathon, which challenged personnel to come up with ways to “use digital innovation to connect the UN and the public more effectively.” For Rise, the solution was the launch of social media leaderboard, UN Social 500. At its core, it encourages staff to augment their social media impact and promote UN efforts via personal online accounts. The board even boasts its very own #UNSocial500 hashtag to ensure followers stay up-to-the-minute on all the latest developments.

In today’s digital society social media has become an integral part of both personal and corporate communications. For an organisation focussing on peacekeeping, security, human rights AND economic development, social media is a hugely effective way to engage with global citizens. As such, UN personnel making the most of social media channels deserve to be commended for their efforts. The UN Social 500 leaderboard does just this, while simultaneously allowing members of the public to discover the most influential men and women who promote, discuss and describe the work of the UN on a daily basis.

From globally recognised organisations such as the United Nations to local SMEs and expanding corporations, the latest UN Social 500 drive is a lucid example of how a gamified performance management platform can be used to motivate employees to supercharge social media presence. For businesses and organisations of any size, it’s an innovative way to boost public profile, engage with a larger target audience and ensure that social media channels are worked at their hardest.

To find out more about Rise and sign up for a FREE membership to the online GPM community, go to: www.rise.global

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/risedotglobal

Twitter: https://twitter.com/risedotglobal

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/2734321

About

Rise is a Gamified Performance Management (GPM) platform designed to help businesses get better at what’s important to them. The platform does this by providing regular, relevant feedback in a way that’s clear, proactive and results driven.

Members of the Rise community can choose to follow public or private boards in order to stay up to date with all the latest industry movements and trends. Once signed up, users can track progress against multiple metrics. These draw on a myriad of different systems and are an invaluable resource for businesses wanting to uncover how they shape up against the competition.

Contact

Contact: Toby Beresford

Email: toby@rise.global

Tel UK: 0203 286 1568

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UN Social 500 leaderboard to recognise, amplify and encourage UN staff social media advocacy launches today #UNSocial500

I’ve just pressed the button on a 500 person tweet out, to congratulate the top 500 social media influencers within the United Nations on their inclusion on the UN Social 500.

The UN Social 500 is designed to recognise and honour those UN personnel who are spreading the word about the work of the UN by creating and maintaining a social media channel.

The UN Social 500 program came about in response to the challenge of the UN Influx hackathon. The challenge asked “how can we use digital innovation to connect the UN and the public more effectively”.

There are already hundreds of UN staff using social media channels to connect with hundreds of people and the vast variety of these means these channels cover thousands of niche topics.  By recognising their valuable contribution in an innovative way we can amplify their impact and encourage others to work on connecting the UN and the public via social media.

There is no prize for being on the board, simply the honour that comes from being included, though there is a digital badge that can be embedded on each individual’s own blog or home page.

The board is open for new UN staff to join, there is Social Media Guidance on how to plan and create an effect social media presence. The board has its own hashtag #UNSocial500 so everyone can see what each other is saying about it.

To rank players within the UN Social 500,  I used Klout scores, a universal standard of social media influence.  The board is based on the Rise gamified performance management platform  which provides personalised feedback, maintains an historic score record and allows flexible scoring systems.

From a Rise point of view, it is particularly interesting as a great technical deployment of a standalone Rise board on WordPress. If you’d like to copy the site then do let me know and I’ll be happy to send you a file with the WordPress template I used and the initial content.