Synthesis. The fundamental objective of gamification is to impart an experiential lesson for participants. Developers believe that it accelerates the learning process and boosts the impact of the lessons. Gamification is also a two-edged sword that could be used as an effective marketing tool. This is an important angle for elearning developers: gamification is shifting from instructional and compliance to marketing purposes.
Cool, right? This is one of the best benchmarks for gamification.
Although developers use gamification as an elearning modality, it is also evolving as a marketing and advertisement medium. Ford combined real test driving skills tests with an interactive platform that shows the actual driving ‘scores’ of the users. Then, Ford came up with a clever idea: users can download the video capture of their test so that they can share it via social media. The test drivers become the conduit of promoting Ford online.
This gamification also becomes a research tool for the automobile company. They are able to test, evaluate and assess user response and reaction to their new automobile. Engineers and car designers are probably looking through the backend of gamification to gather other vital information and data contributed by the user who was having fun just by testing the car.
When gamification is used for survey and research, the developers become the learners. The users or the “crowd” becomes the knowledge source through the input and data they contribute to the backend of the interactive platform.
In her paper, Raising Engagement in E-learning through Gamification, Cristina Ioana Muntean cites that “gamification is a quite recent concept, on the market as well as in research, but it has a big potential.” It has been added to the Gartner Hype Cycle for 2011. The Gartner Group predicts that gamification will be a key trend that every CIO, IT planner and enterprise architect must be aware of as it relates to business (Gartner Group, 2011).”
Gartner Hype Cycle for 2011 (Cited by Cristina Ioana Muntea)
The Gartner Hype Cycle and author of the paper appears to have foreseen the future of gamification quite accurately. Cristina Ioana Muntea mentions the trend of gamification for industrial research and marketing:
"Gamification is recently successfully in websites in order to create loyalty, brand awareness and effective marketing engagement (Foursquare, Stack Overflow) (Daniels, 2010), but according to our observations it can successfully be used also in the educational environment.
There are several successful gamification examples like ZeroEmission from Nissan used for its ecological model Nissan Leaf. Kobo Reading Life is an application that tries to gamify reading, Nike ID is an e-commerce gamified application allowing users to design they own shoes and the most popular designs gather points. Various application of gamification can be found in the industry of health and wellness: Keas, FitBit, Lose It. Motivation and learning also offer examples like: Stick.com, MindSnacks, and EnglishAttack.
Gamification desires to combine intrinsic motivation with extrinsic one in order to raise motivation and engagement. Intrinsic motivations come from within, the user/actor decides whether to make an action or not, some examples are: altruism, competition, cooperation, sense of belonging, love or aggression. Extrinsic motivations, on the other hand, occur when something or someone determines the user to make an action for example: classifications, levels, points, badges, awards, missions (Viola, 2011)."
Read my related blog:
Gamification: Play A Game, Save the World
Channtal Fleischfresser, 2012 Ford Focus test drive becomes an interactive game
Cristina Ioana Muntean, Raising engagement in e-learning through gamification