My TEDx talk on Gamification just reached 100K viewers on Youtube!

My Gamification TEDx speech in Switzerland reach 100K!

A few years ago, I went to Lausanne Switzerland to do a TEDx speech on my framework Octalysis Gamification. It was my first time visiting Europe, and it was a huge blast.

It was a pretty difficult speech to do, since originally this talk was a 5-hour workshop, and I had to shrink it to a 17 minute talk. Not only that, I had to include a bunch of videos and fun things to share to make it dynamic. Of course, a TEDx talk is more like a brochure instead of a manual. The goal of a brochure is to get people to want to learn more. Therefore, a lot of the deeper knowledge, including Level II and Level III Octalysis couldn’t be covered, but I had to make it fun.

Little known fact – I said the first sentence incorrectly, and for the first minute I was simply trying to recover from that. Usually I just intuitively do my talks with my slides, but TEDx asked me to memorize my lines and rehearse with them a few times. I was all ready to go, but then when I was onstage, the lighting was MUCH stronger than I expected. It threw me off and I uttered the sentence wrong. It was supposed to be, “Imagine a world where WORK is obsolete – where LABOR is a thing of a past.” I said, “Imagine a world where LABOR is…” and then I felt sad. It took me 1-2 minutes to pick myself back up again and be on my flow again. I always wonder if the talk would have been more successful if I maintained strong energy from the very beginning. Of course, we would never know.

Successes in Gamification after the Gamification TEDx Talk

Since then, I published my book Actionable Gamification, and have won two Gamification Guru of the Year awards by the Gamification World Congress. Many fans, book readers, and clients have contacted me after watching that talk. I am grateful how much this talk has contributed to my accomplishments today.

Thank you TEDx, thank you Lausanne, and thank you Switzerland.

 

Top 10 Social Gamification Examples that will Literally Save the World

Social Gamification

New to Gamification? Check out my post What is Gamification & my Gamification Framework: Octalysis. You can also check out my Gamification Book: Actionable Gamification

Gamification Examples that can really make the world better

As a Gamification Pioneer, one of the most common responses I get when I tell people about Gamification is some version of, “Interesting. But how can something like video games really create value in real-world important things?” In other words, “I’m going to be polite to you, but I think this is a gimmicky fad that has no impact.”

Instead of trying to convince people with the same arguments over and over again, I’m going to settle this issue here once and for all – Gamification not only has real-life value and impact, it even saves lives and could ensure our future as a race!

Earlier I wrote about Old Spice’s Genius Gamification Marketing Campaign DIKEMBE MUTOMBO’S 4 1/2 WEEKS TO SAVE THE WORLD. While I think it is brilliant and does a lot of things well, I can assure you that it does NOT really save the world, outside of making more men smell like an adventure and bake gourmet cakes with the kitchens they made with their own hands.

But the 10 Examples below will blow your mind away and show you why Good Gamification, or “Human-Focused Design” (as opposed to Function-Focused Design”), undeniably has a role in “adding more lives” to our future.

Many thanks for the help of 周唯中 for making the work below possible.

Gamification Example 1: Puzzle Game FoldIt made breakthrough in AIDS Research that Scientists couldn’t solve

By 2009, AIDS has already killed 30 Million people, or close to the equivalent of the State of California. As of 2010, there are still 34 Million people that have contracted HIV. For 15 years, many of the top PhD Scientists in the world were trying to decipher a crystal structure for one of the AIDS-causing viruses called the Mason-Pfizer monkey virus (M-PMV), but could not solve it.

Luckily, the University of Washington’s Center for Game Science (yes, such center exists) collaborated with the Biochemistry department and created FoldIt, an online puzzle video game about protein folding. Foldit utilizes a game-like puzzle interface that allows people from all over the world to “play” and compete in figuring out various protein structures that fit a researcher’s criteria.

To everyone’s surprised, with over 240,000 “players” registering for the game and competing viciously against each other, a solution to the structure of the M-PMV was found in 10 days, creating a major breakthrough in the AIDS research field. 15 Years vs 10 Days? I would say for this alone Gamification added extremely concrete value to the world and could one day save a loved one.

Gamification Example 2: RPG Diary Game Pain Squad helps Patients Combat Cancer by providing both Purpose and Data

Continue reading Top 10 Social Gamification Examples that will Literally Save the World

Octalysis Group is hiring – The 2017 Octalysis Challenge!

Search for the best Gamification Designer

My company The Octalysis Group is recruiting a new part-time or full-time (remote) Trainee to help our efforts in designing engaging gamified solutions for clients around the world.

For that we launched the Octalysis Design Challenge 2017.

What you get as the top gamification designer

– the opportunity to work with the world’s leading experts in Gamification and Behavioral Design
– a great team with fun people, where only merit counts
– full transparency and full autonomy
– work from wherever you are in the world
– a full time position with a base pay and excellent bonus prospects (semi part-time openings available as well)

How to apply for the Challenge?

The challenge is to create a better and more engaging experience for the successful Habitica app using the Octalysis Framework.

Click on this link for instructions

A selected few will become finalists and present their work to me.

The good thing: every submission that passes our scrutiny will also get a Level 1 Octalysis Certificate!

Please send your Challenge Submissions to joris [at] octalysisgroup [period] com
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: 3 MARCH 201

Top 10 eCommerce Gamification Examples that will Revolutionize Shopping

eCommerce Gamification

The power of eCommerce Gamification

Shopping has evolved so much from traditional market exchanges. It completely transformed from acquiring of needed goods into a rich experience that integrates deeply into every single culture of civilizations that can afford to power such an activity. People shop for fun, and for many (ahem, me not included), shopping could still be an epic win after spending 3 hours in a mall without buying a single item.  (In the rulebook for my game, if I am shopping for over an hour and I bought nothing, I felt that I have failed. No Win-State for me…)

As shopping went online, a lot of the fun, interactive, and social experiences of shopping disappeared. However, it opened up a whole new world of other fun and exciting activities that could make shopping even more addicting than ever – except this time within the comforts of my home, and I can achieve my win-states much more often.

There is where eCommerce Gamification comes in place. Awesomely, many eCommerce gamification examples out there have actively improved sales and conversions by double or even triple digits towards the right direction, and some helped eCommerce sites become $Billion businesses!

Below I present to you 10 stellar eCommerce Gamification examples that will revolutionize shopping.

eCommerce Gamification #1: eBay’s Bidding and Feedback System

When it comes to early good gamification, few can match eBay’s ability to bring out our Core Drives.

If you were to just think of creating an ecommerce store, it’s not necessarily intuitive to have a competitive bidding system, real-time feedback, and stars for leveling up that eBay introduced.

The power of eBay is that buying items on eBay isn’t just a “purchase” like most ecommerce sites (Core Drive: Ownership & Possession in Octalysis), but when you buy something on eBay, you felt that you WON! Even though you might have paid 10% more compared to what you initially wanted to pay, you felt that you beat the other bastards who were bidding against you, sealing your victory. This is enormously a good example of Core Drive 2: Development & Accomplishment.

Add that to trying to improve your seller’s %, getting more stars, improving feedback scores, and constantly checking back to see if you have gotten new bids or competition (Core Drive 6: Scarcity & Impatience as well as Core Drive 7: Unpredictability & Curiosity), finally leading to NOT wanting to lose the deal (Core Drive 8: Loss & Avoidance), no wonder everyone keeps saying, “eBay is so addicting!”

eCommerce Gamification #2: Woot.com Daily Deal System

The online retailer, Woot offers only one initial product per day in
limited quantities at a special sale price.  A new product will be
offered only after the supply of the first product has been exhausted,
or by 12:00 AM Central Time.  Each day people will wait for the next
product to be introduced, often at the midnight hour.

Since each product is limited and unknown beforehand, there are a
combination of factors which influence the site’s shoppers.  They know
that the next item up can be desirable and yet limited in quantities.

They also know that they could be disappointed in the particular
product, and have no desire to acquire it.  Thus, Woot’s users are
attracted by the motivation to find out what will be offered and how
“rare” they might perceive it to be.

Often times, when people log onto Woot.com at 4PM, they would see that amazing deal, but unfortunately sold out. After a few days, they feel a stronger desire to finally be able to get the deal. As a result, a bunch of people starts to go on Woot at 11:59PM, constantly refreshing their page, so they can immediately see the new deal, and potentially scoop it up if it’s appealing.

When you get users to change their daily habits before going to bed like Woot.com, you are demonstrating an amazing utilization of Core Drive 7: Unpredictability & Curiosity, as well as Core Drive 6: Scarcity & Impatience.

eCommerce Gamification #3: Nike’s Winter’s Angry Campaign

Continue reading Top 10 eCommerce Gamification Examples that will Revolutionize Shopping

Gamifying Company Politics: Chou’s Corporate Player Types

Corporate Gamification Player TypesThe Corporate Environment is a Terrible Game

This post is a little different to what I usually write. It is not about my Octalysis Framework (but there are some core foundational principles derived from it), but rather on my observations after working with a significant amount of corporate companies.

Most employees dislike the politics and culture within their corporate environment for a multitude of reasons.

  • Your coworkers and allies are also your competitors.
  • You don’t know who is actually playing nice or pretending to play nice.
  • Sucking up seems to be more important than doing good work.
  • When working between departments, people would spend an hour explaining why they shouldn’t do something that would take 15 minutes.
  • People fight to claim credit and put the blame on others.

This has demoralized the motivation of many employees, which results in low productivity, bad-mouthing the company after work, and high turnover rate.

Of course, being a manager is extremely difficult too. You have to deal with this most fuzzy thing called human emotions. It’s confusing and irrational. Many of the smartest people in the world with ridiculous IQs were terrible at  figuring out human feelings.

I remember many years ago, when my friends first entered the workforce, they would complain how their bosses are incompetent idiots that didn’t understand the business at all. However, I’m almost 100% certain that, besides a few exceptions, now that these friends are managers themselves, people under them are calling them incompetent idiots.

Clearly, it is very difficult being a good manager.

Based on my observations, I’ve created a quick player type matrix for the corporate environment so managers would have a strategy guide to follow. Keep in mind, this is not meant to be some great gamified player type theory that I spent years perfecting. There are many others like Richard Bartle and Andrzej Marczewski who have more robust gamified player type concepts that I highly recommend.

Gamifying Company Politics: Chou’s Corporate Player Types

Corporate Gamification Player Types.001

The key principle in my Corporate Player Types, is that I divide all employees into two characteristics: performance, and politics.

Performance simply means how well the employee can carry out their responsibilities. This factors in work ethics but is focused on end deliverables. If an employee works hard but cannot produce good work, then performance is low. However, this should NOT factor “business impact,” simply because business impact is a result of having both performance and political skills.

Politics means how good (or proactive) the employee is at making friends within the organization. These are people who regularly say nice things to others, ask coworkers out for lunch, and proactively try to impress their superiors. They also tend to make something harsh sound more pleasant to the ear, even if it means sugarcoating the information a little bit, or having slight exaggeration or omission. They aren’t “liars” in most socially acceptable standards, but they are very driven by extrinsic goals and therefore pick what they say carefully and strategically.

Any 2×2 matrix divides people into four different categories: Low Performance and Low Politics, High Performance but Low Politics, High Politics but Low Performance, and High Performance and High Politics.

Corporate Gamification Player Types

Gamified Player Type: Survivors

For the Low Performance and Low Politics quadrant, I call them “Survivors.” Survivors are there simply to collect a paycheck (Core Drive 4) and not get fired (Core Drive 8). As a result, they usually just work hard enough to collect their paychecks and not get fired, and then they stop exerting effort.

Survivors are not necessarily dumber or less efficient at what they do. More often than they are just not motivated or incentivized to do good work. Survivors often like to say things like, “Why should I do this? I won’t get paid more to do it.” or “Last year I did way more work but I didn’t get a bonus. There’s no point.”

Gamified Player Type: Performers

For the High Performance but Low Politics quadrant, I call them “Performers.” Performers are people who do great work and finish their deliverables in efficient and reliable manners. They are often the people that solve problems that no one else on the team can solve. However, they have a natural dislike (or ignorance) towards corporate politics, and therefore never spend the time to make friends or work on other peoples’ feelings and motivations.

Performers also don’t suck up to their bosses and would do career suicide moves like telling their VP, “I can’t go to your dinner party because I need to think about how to execute on the plan next week.” Performers usually dislikes those who are good at politics, thinking them as “phony” and “insincere.” They inherently believe that, “As long as I do a good job, I will be given my fair reward. That will show those fancy-mouth ass-kissers.”

Gamified Player Type: Politicians

Continue reading Gamifying Company Politics: Chou’s Corporate Player Types