Gabe Zichermann, GSummit Chair and author of the brand new book Gamification by Design (O’Reilly) shares some remarkably doable action points as outlined in the book.
He introduces Bartles player types which looks at player motivation. They are:
This list, says Zichermann, is nothing short of revolutionary – He suggests you look at your customer from a motivational standpoint. Who is your customer? It turns out that in this engagement economy the player types is something everyone should understand. By understanding these motivations you can unpack what your consumer will think is fun.
Most of the world is not the achiever type. (When he asked for a show of hands about 50% of the audience felt that they were the achiever type.) It’s really hard to design an experience for the achiever. Achievers like to win. They are not thrilled if there isn’t an opportunity to win. At the very beginning, don’t design for yourself if you think you are this type of player.
Socializers make up the majority of the population. No company has ever failed because it was too authentically social.
Explorers get their excitement from going out into the world and finding things. Zichermann claims he is this type.
Killers like to play in a win/lose environment. They can’t be killed.
Saps—status, access, power, stuff – He lists these from most to least engaging. He is not opposed to giving away free stuff, people love free stuff. But if you give someone something for free they know exactly how much it’s worth.
Status, access and power, however, are harder to value so the tendency is to overvalue. Therefore, they can be used in a more cost effective way.
Fundamentally, the better you understand the player from a story standpoint the closer you can get to understanding their player type.