Gamification In Finance: How To Maximize Its Potential

Gamification in finance is a fresh way to amplify the transformation financial services has seen in the past few years. The industry has had to evolve to meet the new needs of today’s digital customers, its image has been overhauled, and its products have been revamped and digitized. Banking and financial services are now often done through the convenience of an app rather than the face-to-face environment of a bank or other financial institution. This provides the perfect platform for playable experiences.

Is it any wonder then that the market has got more competitive as a result? Less than a decade ago 37% of UK bank account holders had used their account as the main current account for 20 or more years. Today around 60,000 people switch from their main current account provider each month.

It’s now the norm for consumers to be controlling their banking and financial services from their smartphones, especially among younger groups. It makes sense to be marketing to them through that channel too.

As the image of the industry has changed so too has the way it communicates to customers. Language and tone of communication have changed to become simpler and friendlier, revealing new opportunities for marketing to customers in a more accessible way. Today gamification in finance is a perfect fit since it plays into this softer communication to customers. It’s also a powerful way to catch attention, build rapport and relationships, and win new customers; putting a gamification strategy in place is easier than you might think.

The role of gamification to educate

In the finance industry, financial education is as important as the products such companies sell, making it an important differentiating tool for financial services companies looking to build customer relationships.

There are, for example, a number of children’s prepaid debit cards, such as GoHenry, for which the financial education side of their app is as important as enabling its young customers to earn, spend, and save money.

And this need to educate is important for all ages and all financial services products, whether it’s trying to explain products in greater detail or encouraging better money-handling habits.

Gamification in financial services can be a perfect way to engage customers and educate them too, offering a fresh, unique, and exciting opportunity for an improved dialogue with the customer.

It was a tactic adopted by Scandinavia’s large insurance company Tryg which wanted a meaningful way to interact with its audience and potential customers while collecting high-quality leads.

Tryg achieved this by creating a quiz in conjunction with Leadfamly about dental health to help raise awareness of its dental insurance offering. The series of five questions helped better educate customers about dental-related topics and gave those playing the chance to win an electric toothbrush. The game saw an average engagement of 51 seconds with 595 leads generated from the campaign.

Does gamification really work in the serious world of financial services?

Despite the reinvention of the sector, it’s natural for financial services companies to still be a little hesitant about the power of gamification and its fit for their sector. They often worry about its fit for such a serious subject, and whether it might negatively impact the professional nature of the sector.

It was something that Tryg considered with its campaign. “Because we are a serious brand in a traditional industry we have to think about how what we are doing comes across,” says Josefine Falch, CRM manager at Tryg. Its success proved that it hadn’t needed to worry.

Danske Bank also proved that gamification works, even when supporting more serious subjects like financial services.

It faced the challenge that financial services and banking companies often face – getting the audience engaged in a low-interest but complex topic. In this case it was to inform and guide homeowners about the availability of a public subsidy available for those carrying out energy improvements on their property.

The company worked with Leadfamly to turn what would previously have been a read-only guide into an interactive guide in a quiz format. It aimed to get 10,000 people to take the quiz within a month.

Instead it got more than twice the engagement it had planned with 25,576 people taking the quiz, as well as an all-time high click through rate of 38.5% which astonished the company. “38.5% is an amazing result,” says Peder Thomsen, Marketing Consultant at Danske Bank. “It’s above and beyond realistic expectations for a campaign like this, and for any campaign really.”

The role of marketing gamification in the customer journey

The experiences of Danske Bank and Tryg is proof that marketing gamification helps those in the financial services industry to improve the customer journey despite the preconceptions about whether games suit such a sector.

In an industry that is looking to engage more closely with its customers than ever, it’s proved that introducing the element of play to help capture customer attention and educate them about what might have traditionally been seen as dry subjects is hugely effective, giving those that adopt it a competitive advantage over their rivals.