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Does gamification have a place in the finance industry?

Decentral Appoints Gamification Pioneer Yu-kai Chou as Chief Experience Officer

By Nathan Baranowski, Managing Director at OJO Solutions

Rocked by digital transformation and fast-shifting customer demands, the finance industry is evolving to reflect the needs of modern society. Today, core industries are working to create a hyper-connected ecosystem, one that streamlines every experience and interaction we have with organisations: from traditional banks to ambitious fin-tech start-ups, everyone’s looking for a new way to keep customers engaged.

Nathan Baranowski

Nathan Baranowski

Increasingly, savvy finance businesses are turning to gamification techniques that integrate game mechanics into non-game processes to boost interest and transform mundane tasks into satisfying – and often addictive – activities.

With a growing number of banks and emerging start-ups eager to capitalise on the popularity of games to supercharge customer and employee loyalty, could gamification be the key to success in this fast-paced sector?

Educating your users

Educational games have long been part of the e-learning ecosystem, helping users with skill development and understanding of complex topics in a way that keeps them engaged with the subject matter. Considering most consumers won’t be interested in reading about complicated financial concepts – even ones that concern them – gamification provides banks with the opportunity to create engaging learning experiences that encourage the user to get to grips with these topics for their own gain.

While an arduous article on the basics of investment might tell a user what they need to know, an interactive app goes further by motivating them to understand complex topics through the pull of psychological reward intrinsic to game mechanics.

Encouraging healthy financial habits

Just as fitness apps inspire users to be more active through goal-setting, gamification is already proving powerful in encouraging good financial habits. Take Rooster Money, for example. An app truly fit for the modern age, Rooster Money is an intuitive finance that platform helps children to manage their pocket money.

Similarly, mobile-only bank Monzo has developed ‘pots’ in which you can put aside a fixed sum of money for specific goals and track your spending against personalised targets, while personal finance app Smarty Pig enables users to achieve your purchasing goals through a progress bar.

In this context, gamification has shown distinct potential in helping customers to achieve financial goals in a way that engages them emotionally: after all, it’s easy to keep spending money without checking your account until it’s too late, but it’s hard to ignore notifications about a target you’re close to missing.

Building customer loyalty

Thanks to the advent of digital technology and the proliferation of fin-tech apps, the meaning of customer loyalty in the financial services sector has evolved from ‘a bank for life’ to ‘a bank for your life’: increasingly, customers want to be engaged, they want a company who will provide personalised experiences that fit in their pocket.

Naturally, users of cutting-edge banking and money management apps have responded well to gamification techniques adopted by their provider – not only because they feel more in control of their finances, but because they prefer providers who actively work to engage and connect with them.

Boosting employee engagement

Already, the adoption of gamification into finance solutions is proving a match made in heaven – and in a way, it’s hardly surprising. Not only does this technique have the potential to make the management of finances fun, but it can also further be employed within training itself to spark employee engagement.

Whether it’s a competitive game with a visible leader-board and prizes for salespeople who hit targets or a scenario-based game that teach employees how to handle everyday customer interactions, gamification is favoured by finance leaders and HR managers alike for its ability to create meaningful and memorable learning experiences that promote knowledge retention.

Whether you’re seeking to adopt gamification into a customer-facing platform or an employee training programme, specialist support is crucial in ensuring a successful implementation that achieves the intended result. Get in touch with OJO Solutions to find out how you could win with gamification.

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