Gamification is not a new concept. Its been part of our daily life for most part of our Adulthood. For example, Frequent flyer mails, hotel rewards are all engagement programs which use gamification concepts. The current millennial banking customers and future customers would have been living an environment of games since their childhoold. Before turning 21, the average american would have spent around 3000 hours of reading books thrice less than the number of hours playing video games. These are the current and future banking customers who have grown up in a gaming eco system and are close to being a gaming expert.

When gamers move to different stages, the brain releases dopamine which gives them excitement and motivation to explore more. The reward based journey is key to enhancing the customer experience.

How can Banks adopt a similar online experience strategy to attract their future customer base and maintain their current ones? Can banks customize each customer experiences with their unique traits and personas? Banks need to understand the various goals of millennials who can choose their financial mission or storyline they would like to choose, and Banks need to design an experience accordingly.

Games offer options of whom to play with, when to play and what to play. They offer customized user profiles or avatars with unique abilities, traits and appearances. Gamers also thrive on the freedom to choose a specific mission or storyline. Millennials typically would like to manage their future not like a ladder which is monotonous but more like climbing net. This allows them to climb up, climb down or move side to side. This gives them flexibility and more options for them to choose their own financial

Games gives hints at various stages of the play to move forward in that mission. Banks need to emulate this scenario in terms of helping them along the financial mission they choose and offer them financial strategy options. Give them options on pros and cons on choosing any given strategy.

Millennials and Gen Xs want full control of their destiny in all walks of like. Like in gaming with the joy stick in their hand, they choose their avatars, mission, make decisions and influence the game outcome.  Similar banks need to give the financial joy stick to them so that they control their experience and the journey they want to take. Provide them the tools which will assist them along the way. This means access anytime of the day and through any means. Multiplayer online game has been and still is one of the popular ways of enhancing gaming experience. Similarly, banks need to think of how the use P2P eco-system to encourage more interaction and engagement. This can be used in how customers with similar financial goals can team up and learn from each other to have a better chance of financial success. Banks must make efforts to harness their own customers strength to help other customer who need help.

Every video game comes tutorials and simulations which gamers practice, hone their skills. This will help them to think smarter and have a better shot of achieving their mission. Likewise, banks need to a similar system for customers to try out innovative ideas and strategies to identify and achieve their financial mission which they can apply in real life situations.

Gamers always love to share their challenges, failures and winning strategies when they play game. Banks needs to develop the eco-system of shared learning and help customers to avoid pitfalls or find new ways of achieving financial freedom.

Games always highlight the progress of each gamer in terms of levels with respect to the mission they have chosen. Clear visibility and appropriate hints & training in given at each level is provided. Banks need to constantly give options to their customers based on the progress compared to financial mission they have chosen. Give them hints with regards to change in strategy and provide new training to deal with their current challenge.

Gaming is not new but applying gaming concepts to different scenarios for a bank is new or a recent phenomenon at best. Gamification may provide a solution for banks when they design the digital customer journey otherwise they will go nowhere in achieving their mission.

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Raghu Raghavan

Awarded 2017 Most Influential MarTech Leaders, World Marketing Congress. Experienced Team leader with a successful track record in Product-Market fit, Product Marketing, Field Marketing, Digital Marketing, Monetization, Business Strategy, Business Development across Technology industry. Expertise in both Products & Services oriented segments.

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