April 18th, 2011
Missions, Leader Boards, News Feeds Style “Rio” Sweeps Site
When you’re in the grocery store, you might come across a bunch of Chiquita bananas wearing tags promoting the upcoming film, “Rio,” or a floor cling with similar messaging. And when the film opens on Friday you’ll see Chiquita product placements woven into the storyline.
The deal to promote the film from 20th Century Fox also includes a Chiquita-“Rio” branded site developed separately from Chiquita’s main site. All this sounds pretty standard for a movie partnership until you discover that the “Make Your Way to Rio” sweepstakes site has been gamified, or populated with popular concepts taken directly from the world of gaming and applied to site features.
Gamification began taking hold in media and entertainment marketing and has expanded to loyalty programs, brand marketing and promotions, and even into call center operations and sales incentive programs. Experts say marketers should think like gamers because the randomness or chance woven into most great game experiences is novel and keeps people interested.
“Anywhere there are people to be motivated you can use game mechanics to motivate them,” said Rajat Paharia, the founder and chief product officer of Bunchball, an online gamification solutions provider.
Bunchball’s Nitro platform is used to power the gamification system at the Chiquita/Rio promotional Web site where players complete certain tasks—like watching a movie trailer, coloring pages, tweeting or posting to Facebook about the movie—and then rewarding them with badges that unlock content and prizes. Prizes include ringtones, music from the movie, Chiquita bananas, an Xbox and a grand-prize trip to Rio de Janeiro courtesy of American Airlines. More than 27,000 badges had been earned already.
“As an individual user I’m being rewarded for consuming content, but the more friends I can pull in as well unlocks more levels and high-level prizes,” Paharia said.