Retail In-Store Digital Destination Gamification: Part 2

The focus of this series “Power of Content” is to help people with content strategies and how they relate to digital screen media.

McCormick-1013Consumers today are more demanding and frustrated than ever with their in-store shopping experience. And evoking a positive reaction to motivate a shopper to buy a product in a retail store is extremely difficult.

Independent research firms KRC & Vanson Bourne reported in a recent survey of 5,000 adults between the ages of 18 and 69 that there is an overwhelming agreement amongst shoppers that retail ads and promotions do not resonate. And the channels most likely to be LEAST APPEALING are ads through mobile apps, email, online and in-store. However, over three-quarters agree that they would be more likely to purchase from a retailer again if they provided offers targeted to their interests, wants or needs.

Furthermore, around half of those surveyed are prepared to share online preferences and shopping behavior in exchange for receiving ads or promotions that are more targeted to their personal interests and needs.

Almost all would be willing to share at least one piece of personal information if it means they receive more customized offers. And 78 percent of shoppers would be willing to share their email address.

To attract and converse with today’s “digital everywhere” shopper, the store must meet the consumer on their own turf by providing true ”digital destinations.” Digital destinations are a well-calibrated combination of psychological, emotional and social ingredients that engage the shopper’s persona, augment the retail store’s physical environment and enhance the brand’s image. And at the heart of these digital engagements is “gamification.” Gamification is the study of how games can be designed and used to engage shoppers and create a more stimulating, fun and persistent shopping experience. For more than a century consumers have been exposed to games when they shopped. These ranged from Green Stamps to redeeming a free gift for cereal box tops.

Gamification – A chance to win from genres of games, providing the psychological motivation to play and win.

”Gaming digital destinations” are captivating, fun, bold engagements within the store that carry on beyond the four walls of the space to provide a truly omni-channel experience. At the same time, they create an entertaining experience that motivates the shopper to come back to the store to play again and again.

The gaming digital destinations involve not only the larger screen experience but also the consumer’s mobile screen and the associate’s tablet. And it continues at home leveraging the relationship created at the gaming digital destination.

Gamification relies on an understanding of human psychology to inspire and motivate shopping behavior. The key psychological, emotional and social ingredients of gaming digital destinations include:

  • Emotional Drivers — Creating a connection with the consumer by triggering one or more of the eight psychological drivers: self-creation, mastery, dreaming, security, playtime, sport, sanctuary and connection
  • Selfie-Sharing — Creating a two-way conversation between the brand and the digital shopper
  • Personalization — Using unique visual choices that align products with the distinctive persona

Using these key ingredients, the retailer and the brand can engage the digital shopper to have fun on their in-store Gaming Digital Destination and when the consumer leaves the store, continue that conversation on their pocket screen and home screen — anywhere, anytime.

In the third installment, I will highlight omni-channel and gaming digital destinations.