In this day and age, brands are faced with the difficulty of getting noticed and retaining the attention of audiences online. But digital innovation has given them new ways of interacting with customers. In a more dynamic and complex digital landscape, it takes effort and innovation to grab attention. New innovations in gamified, customized, rewards-based advertising solve this problem.
Brands can now create highly customized experiences with their ads. By employing advertising that actually interacts with the consumer, companies can reach hard-to-reach consumers. Ads that make the viewer an active participant. Customized, gamified consumer engagement.
In fact, businesses can build an entire branded game experience for mobile and other devices without building a completely new app themselves. Existing channels–ones that consumers already love to operate in–offer unique engagement opportunities. Businesses can reach their target audience with gamified experiences within these platforms themselves. Depending on their target audience, they can use video games, streamed live events, and mobile app games to drive engagement. In fact, businesses may be able to reach new audiences on these channels.
Video Games – Leveling Up the Engagement
Researchers have long understood the power of rewards and incentives in video games to affect human behavior. This understanding has led to efforts to introduce gamification into other areas of life. It has also given brands an attractive way of connecting with consumers: rewards-based advertising. The natural place for this new method of advertising is within video games themselves.
Businesses can place digital coupons for real-life products within the virtual world of a video game. Players can earn these rewards by completing challenges within the game. The massive popularity of addictive games like Fortnite and League of Legends makes them prime candidates for reaching millions of younger consumers. Not only does the placement of product-prizes within these games boost brand awareness and sales, it actually makes products more enticing. When people compete for a prize, it becomes more desirable. This makes them more likely to buy the product in the future.
Events – Leveling Up Sponsorship
From live sports to concerts to events of all kinds, streaming offers another opportunity for rewards-based ads. The introduction of second-screen technology, which allows viewers to play along, answer trivia, stay engaged, and connect with other viewers without being physically present at the event, has created a new platform for reaching audiences directly. That may not play video games.
Sponsors can build a branded, mobile, and interactive experience on this platform. They can have prizes for completing challenges, product-related trivia, and even standard in-app advertising. Both the digital prizes and the traditional ads can help a sponsor get noticed. Product-related trivia offers a chance for useful data collection. By polling users about a new product, brands can determine the reach and effectiveness of their ads. This leads to informed decisions that improve marketing efforts at every touchpoint of the customer journey.
Mobile Games – Not Just a Time Sink
Mobile users admit to spending downtime by playing mobile games. Candy Crush, Pokémon Go, and Angry Birds, anyone? Casual players of these games help them kill minutes they would otherwise spend waiting for a meeting to start or for a waiter to seat their party. But mobile games are so addictive that many people develop a love-hate relationship with them. But people love to play them but also see mobile games as a time sink.
The introduction of rewards-based advertising into mobile games offers people a chance to make their gaming time more productive. Now, they can earn real prizes while playing on the apps they love. If they can potentially get discounts on products or even free products, they can justify the time spent. And brands, of course, get yet another platform on which to connect with consumers.
Between video games, live events, and mobile games, brands can reach a variety of audiences that do not always overlap.
Both Brands and Consumers Benefit
Rewards-based advertising and digital innovation created several avenues for brand-customer interaction. This new style of interaction has something in it for both customers and businesses. Brands leverage customized experiences to increase their reach, drive conversations, and boost sales. Audiences get discounts on products that improve their quality of life, or they get to try a new product for free that they might not have tried otherwise. And they probably enjoy interacting with these ads too. This new style of brand-consumer engagement is more interactive for both parties, and it benefits both parties. A win-win situation.
Future of Advertising
Each new technological innovation has created new ways for businesses to bring their messages to consumers. First, there were print ads, and then radio ads. Each had its own benefits. When television came along, brands could create ads that combined both visual and audio.
Now, with interactive, gamified advertising, digital technology has taken brand-consumer engagement to a whole new level. Previously, audiences were passive spectators receiving brands’ messages. At best, audiences could laugh at funny ads or engage on social media with ad campaigns. In 2021, audiences can play with their ads. Ads that actually involve action on the part of the viewer. Which has the power to change advertising in ways we are only beginning to understand.
Rewards-based advertising is the future of brand-customer interaction. For the first time, brands can create a tailored mobile experience that gives consumers a piece of the action. Incentives, message awareness, data collection, and wins for both the consumer and the company – the possibilities are only beginning to emerge. And best of all, with these platforms into which they can insert their rewards-based ads, brands do not have to do the heavy lifting to create this new type of experience themselves.