5 Ways Games Can Help Your Business

March 31, 2015

Filed under: Serious Games — Simon Walklate

Video games are still often seen as a frivolous pastime and the domain of kids. But did you realise they can and are being used for serious applications by businesses all over the world? Helping them not only accomplish a multitude of goals, but accomplish them more effectively. So the big question is, are you using games in your business and if not, why not?

They can be used to make training fun, help you engage with customers and clients (past, present and future), increase productivity and more. With options of deploying online, on mobile devices, via PC hardware and more. I’ve written this article to highlight and give you a flavour of the top 5 ways you can be using games.

1) Marketing, Advertising & PR

In the offline world, traditional advertising methods are still the go-to way to get the word out about your company. Online, Pay-Per-Click advertising is still the number one method of generating highly targeted traffic. But, what happens after people find you? How do you go about keeping visitors engaged on your website, as well as giving them a reason to return.

Content marketing is really gaining more traction than ever in the online world. It essential serves two main purposes, providing “sticky” content to keep visitors engaged on your website and helping promote your website by getting links and social shares that ultimately drive traffic.

Getting natural links and social shares is more important than ever to any company looking to get more exposure online. When most think about a premium piece of content to help their SEO and PR, they think video. But what most don’t realise is there’s a much more engaging alternative available for a comparable production cost.

The problem with video is it’s only ever a passive medium, your audience doesn’t really participate. This can make scope for re-engagement limited – once you’ve seen a video, it’s unlikely to offer anything new on repeat views. Then there’s the problem of so many using video now that it’s become increasingly difficult to stand out from the crowd.

Despite the fact they’ve been around for at least a decade and their use is growing, branded games used for marketing are still only being used by a minute percentage of companies. Unlike video, they’re interactive, so the viewer directly participates. They also offer an incentive to go back for repeat plays (beat that high score, complete that level, etc.), so overcome most of video’s drawbacks.

2) Business Promotions

When most people think promotions, seasonal or otherwise, they think traditional physical promotional items and corporate gifts. Printed T-shirts, pens, mugs, corporate greetings cards and the like. Although they serve their purpose, are these really helping you stand out in a crowded marketplace?

When sent out to customers and clients past, present and (hopefully) future, an interactive promotional game can really help you stand out and add the wow factor to your business promotions.

3) Employee Training

Whether it’s learning basic business practices or complex systems in the workplace, employee training isn’t usually the most exciting of things. Serious games and simulations provide a unique way to break through that and make training fun, providing a truly engaging medium to get the information across and help it sink in.

4) Staff Rewards to Boost Morale in the Workplace

It’s been proven time and time again, a happy staff is a productive staff. If you want to go the extra mile in injecting a bit of fun into the workplace, creating a branded game for employees to play can be a great reward around Christmas time, any other significant occasion, or just for no reason at all.

It can live on your company intranet (behind an employee login), up on the web (to play outside the workplace), or even make a great, fun addition to your break area.

5) Exhibitions and Live Events

If you’re the kind of business that exhibits at a lot of trade shows or uses live events and experiential marketing to promote your products and services, you’ve probably tried to come up with ideas of how to stand out and draw a crowd.

A game on your exhibition stand could very well be the solution – providing an enjoyable, free experience and encouraging competition over the course of the event with a high score board. Plus, you can use it at multiple events to make sure you get your money’s worth.

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