Gamifying the gamification industry

This is a guest post by two of the Gamification Gurus, Pete Jenkins and Vasilis Gkogkidis, describing how Rise is being used to motivate gamification professionals to be more active on social media.

Introduction

Recently the Success Tracking University was launched by Toby Beresford (https://successtracking.teachable.com/blog/962609/launching).

When we read about it we immediately wanted to help spread the word by sharing some of our experiences with numerical feedback and how it can change behaviour. We have used numerical feedback as a tool to motivate users in a lot of projects we have designed or part of as it can be a quite powerful tool if used right.

In this blog post, we will talk about how Rise, a company that Toby Beresford founded, engages and motivates gamification professionals to be more active on social media. The aim of this case study is to have a look at how numerical feedback made us feel as users and changed our behaviour.

One way to use Rise is as a tool to make a leader board and keep track of how well players are doing on their social media and online presence.

The leader board we participate in is called Gamification Gurus Power 100 (https://www.rise.global/gurus) and monitors how well participants are doing on their social media. The metrics include Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn interaction with the audience as well how many blog posts you uploaded for the month.

We will start by explaining how leader boards work as a game mechanic and what effect they have on the players and on audiences watching the players. Then we will list the goals behind this leader board and how it promotes the gamification industry.

How do leader boards work

The sole purpose of leader boards is to introduce competition among the players. Let’s take a sport like Tennis as an example. Let’s have a look at the Men’s Singles leader board for 2017.

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Table 1: Source: http://www.espn.com/tennis/rankings

We need to keep in mind again that a leader board works on three levels:

  1. it helps the designer of the system to reach the goals of the project,
  2. it motivates and rewards players and;
  3. engages and informs the audience that follows the sport and the leader board.

Let’s break this leader board down and analyse it to see how it works on each of these levels. Going from left to right, the first thing we see is the rank of the players and their name. It may seem obvious but it’s important to have numbers indicating the ranking every player occupies on the leader board. Being number one is a matter of status, I want to see the number 1 next to my name if I am first on the leader board. The same goes for the audience, they want to know who is the best at their favourite sport. By giving this information first the designer of the leader board awards status to the players and informs the audience about who is the best at what they are interested in.

Next element of this leader board is a list of flags indicating where each player comes from and which country they represent. The designer here wants to remind us that Tennis is a sport that people play all over the world. It’s not a national but rather an international phenomenon and each player represents his or her country. Players feel proud to represent their country of course and audiences from these countries are proud to see their flag up there on the leader board.

Third element is the movement of players and how many places they went up or down the leader board. This element shows the progress of players in time. Maybe I was third last month but now I managed to climb to number one or two. It’s important to show how stable player’s performance is. The best players always perform well over a long period of time.

Finally, we have points! Points are rewarded to players for playing the game. The better they play, the more points they get and they perform better than their competitors. This is the element that determines the ranking in every leader board. This is the numerical feedback we have been talking about. Points can be very useful because we can quantify performances based on them. You can see how many wins each player made throughout the year and how many times he lost.

What does the Gamification Gurus Power 100 achieve?

Let’s have a look now at how numerical feedback helps the gamification industry grow by changing behaviours.

A leader board that rewards people to share good content online related to gamification works on three levels as well. First, we have the designer (Toby Beresford in our case) that wants to motivate gamification professionals to share content regularly to grow the industry and create a buzz around it and around Rise, which is his product and he wants to demonstrate its usefulness.

Then we have the players, the gamification professionals that their reward is status that helps them boost their profile in the gamification community. I also think that getting credit from your peers when you share something useful is very motivating. The same goes for some of the conversations that start online and the information you may get on a new project you didn’t know about.

We can’t forget the audience of course. People that want to know more about gamification and they can have a look at the leader board to know who to ask for some information and knowledge on gamification.

Getting numerical feedback from this leader board has really changed the way we think about our social media. We all know that it’s very good to promote good content on social media and have active profiles that help you promote your work.

Participating in the Gamification Gurus leader board though, has really changed the way we use social media. We now feel that we get something extra for being active and for creating engaging content.

As we mentioned earlier, points can really help you analyse a performance and see what you need to improve and of course how well other people are doing on the same thing. Curiosity is in all of us and can motivate us to participate in something to see how good we are compared to other people.

We hope you enjoyed our small case study, if you want to know more about us please have a look at https://gamificationplus.uk/ and find us on Twitter: @petejenkins and @v_gkogkidis

PS. Editor’s note: you might be interested to see that Pete has increased his score from 24 this time last year to 73 (out of 100) on the Gamification Gurus, and Vasilis has increased his from 31 to 65:

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Pete Jenkins Gamification Gurus Score. Source: https://www.rise.global/gurus/p/2249879
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Vasilis Gkogkidis Gamification Guru Score. Source: https://www.rise.global/gurus/p/5916048/r/2526853

The Success Tracking Difference (4) : Sorted One Way

In this mini-series, “The Success Tracking Difference“, we are focusing on the differences between the new discipline of Success Tracking and traditional analytics / business dashboards.

When you look at team statistics on an excel spreadsheet and find yourself at the bottom it can be very tempting to reorder the spreadsheet on a favourable metric which puts you near the top.

This ability for players to reorder the leaderboard by any metric is not used in a success tracking program because it allows multiple worldviews. In a peer success tracking program, part of the value of the single score and the weighting is that this has been commonly agreed. By allowing different leaderboards to be generated this dilutes the impact of the main leaderboard.

Success tracking is also about flexing the algorithm until it’s right. By forcing everyone to focus on the single score it encourages a deep debate on what metrics should be tracked, their weighting and the score algorithm itself.

That’s why on Rise you won’t see a leaderboard with the ability to sort by any metric even if there are more than one metric shown such as in the Gamification Gurus Power 100 board below:

Screenshot 2017-07-19 18.21.44
In Success Tracking everyone focuses on the main score, you can’t reorder (sort) the leaderboard by any of the sub metrics.

Now you know!

How one realty client uses leaderboards to track success across their business

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This is an interview with Kevin Welch on how he uses Rise boards to motivate seller behaviour in his direct reports.

kevin.png

Hi Kevin, great to meet you, tell us a little bit about your role and what you do?

Hi, Toby, it is a pleasure to meet you as well. I am the Inside Sales Manager here at the Keri Shull Team – Optime Realty. I manage a team of 4 that acts as our calling team with a primary responsibility to book appointments for our outside sales agents. Along with managing them, I am responsible for database management, tracking and accountability which is why I became interested in Rise.

How are you using Rise right now? i.e. whose success are you tracking?

I am using rise to track different leaderboards for different departments in our company. We are tracking buyer ratified contracts board, seller ratified contracts board, an Inside Sales appointment total board, and then we created a greatness tracker board that combines a few different activities we feel contribute to success.

What are your players aiming to achieve with Rise?

Our players are aiming to be at the top of their respective boards.

Have you noted any successes so far?

It has created healthy competition because the agents don’t want to be at the bottom and they are all striving for the top of the list.

How do you share the scores each time you update your board?

Every time I update the boards, I screenshot the board and paste the image into a powerpoint to present weekly in our team meetings.

Excellent, thanks Kevin, we look forward to hearing how your teams go from strength to strength!

5 alternative fundraising ideas using leaderboards

Tracking progress and comparing performance on Leaderboards are a great way to bring everyone together to achieve a goal.

The “big number” is highlighted at the top of the page while the leaderboard creates a little healthy competition between the 20% of your fundraisers who raise 80% of the funds.

While using a Rise board to track the score is an awesome use case and we’ve seen this work many times. In this post though I want to ask, are there are other innovative ways to use the technology?

Here are five ideas you might want to try next time you’re planning a digital fundraising campaign:

  1. Use leaderboards as part of an open charity auction – set a time limit and allow bidders to keep adding new bids until the clock runs out when the highest bidder gets the prize.
  2. Everyone-gives charity auction – in this variant all bidders donate and the highest single donation gets the prize.
  3. Mileometer – who can walk / cycle the most miles (assuming they have agreed they will get sponsorship for each mile they walk). Like a fitbit wall chart showing progress on, a leaderboard can encourage walkers to get out of bed a little earlier, just to outwalk their neighbours, all raising that extra bit of sponsorship.
  4. Fundraiser league tables – running league tables of fundraisers can be great fun, be sure to put fundraisers in a division with peers – its unfair to put the people raising funds from high net worths or companies in the same bracket as those trying to encourage online donations
  5. Fundraiser teams – split your fundraisers into teams and see which team can raise the most money. If you’re a school why not split alumni into their houses and maintain old pupils association with not only the school but their house. Griffindor versus Slytherin anyone?

If you’re interested in how Rise’s success tracking technology can supercharge your fundraising efforts, then please do request a fundraisers online product tour via hello@rise.global.