The Psychology of Sales Gamification

3 minutes read

What is Sales Gamification?

Sales gamification is the application of game mechanics to motivate sales teams to achieve more. Gamification harnesses sales team’s competitive spirit to incentivize their achievements such as closing deals, following up with leads etc. Sales gamification is not just about offering rewards to the employees. It’s about understanding how to leverage employee’s psychology to motivate and engage them.

Types of Gamer Psychologies:

It is important to understand that gamification is not a one size fits all technique. In order to successfully implement gamification, you need to target specific personalities. You need to understand your audience to create games that appeal to them.

Employees have different personalities and are motivated by different rewards. While the best gamification project offers something for every personality type, it is important to understand dominant subgroups. This helps you in creating targeted programs for every gamer.

In general, gamers are divided into 3 groups based on their psychology:

1.Fun Seekers:

These are the pure players. These players, simply play for the enjoyment of the process. You will often find them cozied up next to a book of sudoku or with the morning crossword puzzle. They find thrill in solving a riddle, developing a plan, attacking and eventually winning.

2. Socializers:

Socializers are the people who try to network with other people in a game. They are driven by competitiveness to achieve social benefits, such as recognition, networking, or communication opportunities.

3. Reward chasers:

As the name implies, reward chasers are highly motivated by rewards. These are the ones who often send Dropbox or Uber invitations because they want the free perks they get for referrals. These players are most attracted to rewards in any form.

How to design games for each one of these psychology types:

Let’s now see how you can design a gamification module to suit the needs of each one of these types of gamers:

Game design for Fun-seekers: Fun-seekers want to have fun and enjoyable experience with games. So, the game design for them has to be interactive, digital and simulate real-life scenarios. Such games can be developed using the following gamification elements:

  • Set clear goals
  • Offer them challenges
  • Use levels to reward their achievements
  • Provide reinforcements
  • Provide feedback

Game design for Socializers: Socializers love games that offer tangible, measurable results, preferably with public recognition. Below are some great techniques you can use for getting socializer’s attention:

  • Creating competitions
  • Allowing them to view and compare their progress with their team members.
  • Giving rewards and badges for their achievements
  • Putting up these rewards and badges on a leaderboard where everyone in the organization can see.
  • Show the top sales performers for a year or quarter on the leaderboard.

Game design for Reward Chasers: These players find value in getting rewards in the game. They are attracted by rewards in any form. You can include the following rewards in your gamification to spark their interest:

  • Points
  • Virtual currency
  • Discounts
  • Free shipping
  • Exclusive offers
  • And other benefits

Keep it simple

It doesn’t matter whether your game is complex or not. What really matters is the basic psychology around which the gamification is built. This determines the success or failure of gamification. When we think about the popular addictive games like Candy Crush, Farmville– they’re simple, but effective. They get people back and make them want to keep playing.

Remember that when it comes to gamification, you need to have a simple reward system and clearly defined goals to achieve. As long as you structure the initiative around psychological principles and player personas, gamification will bring results.

Published on Wed Feb 6 2019