This is Day 13 of the 30 Days, 30 Killer Wordpress Plug-ins Series.
Gamification is a somewhat recent trend online. It is the idea of turning things into a game.
See, we all have this built-in sense of competition within us. We want to beat the person next to us. Perhaps it is for recognition, social approval, enrichment… the idea is the same.
Ever participated in a product launch, especially in the internet marketing niche? It is common for there to be a “leaderboard”, where it is essentially a top 10 list of the top referring affiliates. Often they will incentivize affiliates to promote with prizes and the like, but under all that… it is the leaderboard which really provokes affiliates. Because, affiliates are competitive as hell. And they don’t want to let one of the other affiliates out-rank them on the leaderboard.
I also came across this in the Wishlist Insider membership program. When you post in the community forums, you’d get points for that interaction. They would also show a leaderboard of the top community members, based on the amount of points they have. And, while they didn’t have this functionality last I looked (I’m no longer a member), I know they were planning on allowing members to “purchase” things by cashing in points.
It was inside that Wishlist Insider program that I discovered the plug-in called CubePoints.
CubePoints allows you to gamify your blog, by awarding points to users for various actions they take, such as:
- Posting a comment.
- Logging in (good for membership sites)
- Creating posts
Then, they can “cash in” those points by accessing special content, getting special downloadables, etc.
The plug-in has a bunch of modules built in, so you can simply turn on the ones you wish to use.
In order to use something like this, you would need some kind of reason for people to register as members. You can’t track points to anonymous readers (obviously). Your best bet would be to couple this with a membership site (perhaps using Wishlist Member). The membership can be completely free if you want.
If you run a community-based site… one where you want people to be engaged and talk with one another, introducing gamification using CubePoints can help propel it along.
Get this…. from a paid membership perspective, this can help, too. Make those points valuable in some way, and then if they cancel their membership, all their points go away. It is a “pain of disconnect”, as some call it.
I figure… if the airlines can do it (what do you think “flight miles” are if not just a gamification system for marketing purposes), so can you. 🙂
Check out CubePoints. It is free, and quite useful. I may even build it into the Academy here at some point.
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