The concept of Gamification is so new that hasn’t been included in popular dictionaries such as Longman and Cambridge. If you do a quick search, you can see that Gamification means the use of game design techniques, game thinking and game mechanics to enhance non-game contexts. We have seen enough overnight fame in the app world. How do simple mobile applications such as Draw Something and Instagram become so successful? What are the mechanisms behind their success? From today, we are going to publish a series of articles, providing insights on how to use gamification techniques to help with mobile solutions designing.
Part 1 – Fogg’s and Triggers
It’s about changing behaviour. To change the way people do anything, we need to reward with fun and fame instead of chastising, negative reinforcement and punishment through guilt and shame.
Traditional games ———— Gamified Stimulation
Virtual implications ———— Real World Implications
Plenty of things use gamification strategies. Even Facebook applies certain behaviour drivers heavily throughout the user experience. I will describe these in detail using the Fogg’s Behavioural Model later and you may come across examples when we discuss reward schedules and ratios if I remember to do so.
This is an introduction to gamification and ways in which I think we can incorporate it into our mobility solutions. It is in no way exhaustive so please do Google liberally. 10 points to Gryffindor if you do.
Side note: Why change behaviour before attitudes? I’d like to introduce the Benjamin Franklin effect here. (Read http://youarenotsosmart.com/2011/10/05/the-benjamin-franklin-effect/ for a wonderful explanation of impression management theory, self-perception theory, how we compensate for cognitive dissonance, and how these help explain the Benjamin Franklin effect.) Behaviour does often shape attitudes but do keep in mind that it also works in the reverse direction.
It is also generally accepted that making people adopt a new behaviour is easier than making people adopt a new attitude.
Here we will cover the models and concepts we will use to understand user types, motivations and how to use this information to persuade them to perform specific actions.
I’m going to cover this in a reverse fashion by beginning with a model for creating control over user behaviours and working backwards to cover motivations and player types. I find it fitting as the model we will be introduced today is best used in reverse too.
Fogg’s Behavioural Model
(For more about the FBM, view B. J. Fogg’s paper here: http://bjfogg.com/fbm_files/page4_1.pdf)
I am a fan of the FBM because firstly, it’s new (since 2009, I think, and evolving), a lot of it is based on observations of human behaviour in a digital environment, and it’s a pretty easy to swallow model that helps us understand one-time behaviour (as opposed to sustained routine behaviour). Additionally, it works as a checklist that we can work backwards with when creating/designing interactions. Also, the guy’s pretty hot for a professor with unfortunate initials.
Fogg proposes that 3 elements must converge at the same moment for behaviour to occur – Motivation, Ability and Trigger. FBM outlines three Core Motivators (Motivation), six Simplicity Factors (Ability), and three types of Triggers.
- Social Acceptance/Rejection
- Physical effort
- Brain cycles
- Social deviance
Facilitator type triggers are suitable for users with high motivation and low ability; spark type triggers are suitable for users with low motivation and high ability; signal type triggers are suitable for users with high motivation and high ability.
To illustrate appropriate trigger usage, let’s take the example of getting a dog to walk to you (behaviour). You have 3 dogs – the puppy, the old dog, the quadriplegic puppy with steely determination and a gut-wrenching origins story.
- The puppy has low motivation (he doesn’t want to entertain you, strange human, when there are butterflies to chase outside) and high ability (all limbs are functioning and he’s pretty accomplished at walking). Getting him to walk to you is best triggered by waving a delicious piece of liver at him (Spark).
- The old dog has high motivation (he loves you so so much, magic treats person) and high ability (like the puppy, just older). Getting him to walk to you is best triggered by calling him to come (Signal).
- The quadriplegic puppy has high motivation (“I can do it! I believe in myself!” says the quadriplegic puppy) and low ability (none of his limbs are functioning). Getting him to walk to you is best triggered by building a mech walker for the little guy (Facilitator).
Facebook is good place to look for effective trigger usage. Generally the behaviour chain to get you completely hooked on Facebook should be something like this:
- Get users to log in
- Get users to link to more friends
- Get users to keep coming back
- Sit back and watch users get obsessed
This is mostly a Facilitator to get you back to Facebook.
You will see this trigger when you are already using Facebook. To get you to connect to more friends, Facebook uses a Facilitator (the one-click find friends function) to make it simpler for you. The copy suggests social acceptance/inclusion, which is built in motivation.
Tags are amazing at bringing you back to Facebook by motivating you to return to check it out. Notifications that you have been tagged act as Signals to get you to visit Facebook once more.
Fogg suggests that designing behavioural change should follow this system:
Next week, ABILITY.