09 Mar Gamification, Next Generation Sales Enablement
According to Salesforce.com, 71% of companies saw an 11%-50% increase in measured sales performance after implementing gamification in their organizations. In the same report, 90% of companies reported that their gamification initiatives are successful. Gamification is one of many evolving technologies that is opening a completely new area for sales enablement to be relevant and engaging.
Long definition: Gamification is the application of gaming concepts (such as point scoring, badges, leaderboards, challenges, and rules of play) to other areas of activity, often in marketing or sales, to promote engagement with a product or service. It taps into users’ competitive impulses and leverages peoples’ natural desires for competition, status, and achievement.
Short definition: Gamification takes the fun and addicting elements of games and interactivity and applies them to real-world activities.
Don’t be mistaken – gamification does not have to actually involve games but simply the game mechanics and concepts. Organizations can use gamification to drive desired user behaviors that are valuable to the brand.
90% of companies report successful gamification initiatives
You most commonly see gamification being used on the consumer-level with programs such as frequent flyer miles, leaderboards for the most popular blog posts, and even the progress bar for profile completion on LinkedIn. In fact, you have more than likely participated in at least one of these programs, whether you knew it or not. However, there are also internal applications for gamification, and if done right, it educates, influences, and rewards the behavior of a sales organization.
Is gamification right for your sales enablement program?
With regards to sales enablement, gamification is a new, fresh way to engage people. According to Bob Marsh, CEO and founder of LevelEleven, “Some of the country’s best and brightest companies [SAP, Comcast, PayPal] have leveraged gamification theory and produced legitimate business results. It is a powerful tool for motivating performance, driving specific business goals, and generating a competitive advantage.
The key to sales gamification success is to understand when and how to apply it so that sales teams engage in meaningful behaviors that address key business objectives. First define clear business objectives and identify how sales team activity aligns with those goals. Secondly, determine how to measure individuals’ performance and then share that information with all users.
How can sales gamification help your business?
Think of sales gamification as a business strategy. With successful implementation, there are several specific areas where you will be able to achieve the greatest impact and tap the full potential of your sales force.
The nature of gamification aligns with many sales rep objectives, such as number of phone calls. Gamification offers a systematic method of tracking individual team members’ progress towards hitting clear, transparent goals. It holds reps accountable to their goals, as well as helps individuals recognize their strengths and identify areas for growth.
Tracking reps’ activity in real-time and keeping a public leaderboard kicks sales teams’ competitive nature into high gear, ultimately helping the organization sell more and grow faster. This system publicly rewards top-performing individuals and motivates those at the bottom to outperform their peers.
With more sales reps working remotely than ever before, your sales force may feel disconnected and may be missing out on valuable feedback on their performance. Gamification promotes competition, as well as recognition of top-performing peers, building a collaborative environment. And with collaboration often comes the sharing of knowledge and a more open dialogue about best practices – a winning situation for everybody. Further, those bottom-level performers are often inspired to seek coaching from their higher-performing peers or their sales leaders. In short, gamification reinforces good behaviors and seeks to correct bad behaviors.
Gamification offers the ability to capture and analyze data on behaviors and what motivates users, allowing organizations to create more engaging experiences. With insight into what activities and types of content are the most motivating, businesses can shorten their on-boarding period and train new team members faster. In fact, 31% more first-year sales reps achieve quota when supported with game mechanics, according to research from the Aberdeen Group. Sales leaders can also identify what types of behaviors lead to excellent results and extend those best practices across the team.
Gamification is about creating better and more meaningful experiences and can lead to additional revenue without hampering sales success. To use gamification successfully requires that you understand what motivates your employees and ensure that the gaming structure and dynamics support and enhance those motivators without disrupting their workflow or distracting from sales goals.
The size of the gamification market will reach $2.8 billion by 2016
Gartner research predicts that by the end of 2015, a gamified service for marketing and sales will become as important to the overall business strategy as Facebook or Amazon, and over 70% of Global 2000 organizations will have at least one gamified application. Further, M2 Research estimates the size of the gamification market will reach $2.8 billion by 2016.
KnowledgeTree’s dashboards and leaderboards leverage gamification to give insight into sales rep performance, motivate sales teams, and share best practices. See which users are sharing particular pieces of content with prospects, how frequently it is being consumed, and whether individuals need to pick up the pace relative to their peers when it comes to using content.