The application of game mechanics to customer marketing has been quickly evolving over the past few years. With marketers recognizing the importance of behavior psychology to their business, the industry known as “gamification” is maturing to a new level.
So who can lay claim to being the “Godfather” of Gamification?
Gabe Zichermann was the first to write a book on the subject and continues to be a major protagonist for the cause. Kris Duggan had the vision and foresight to found Badgeville. Under his leadership, the company has enjoyed strong revenue growth and has garnered the most investor funding among the competitive group.
But Huffington Post gives the title to Rajat Paharia, the founder of Bunchball and a pioneer in the “business use of big data”. According to HP, he is also known for creating the term “gamification”. Make sure you read Rajat’s new book “Loyalty 3.0: How to Revolutionize Customer and Employee Engagement with Big Data and Gamification” (not an affiliate link) to learn more about the promise of gamification.
Everyone mentioned here deserves a share of credit for bringing this new area of thought to customer marketing.
By the way, in my book, Barry Kirk is the premier evangelist of Gamification in consumer loyalty. He was the first of my colleagues to begin talking about the subject and I have enjoyed many a debate with him about where gamification is heading. Barry now works for Bunchball and, if I award him the right badges, he promises to contribute an occasional column to LoyaltyTruth.com in the future.