Gamification of product advertising: M&Ms

What’s the first thought that comes to mind when you think of the word ‘marketing’? Perhaps you’d envision an enthusiastic promoter, someone who’s good with words, trying to convince customers of a product’s value. Well, in light of technological advancements and the introduction of gamification into the field of marketing, we realize that the traditional promotional methods are not the only ways to advertise products. Gamification is something that plenty of companies have turned to to do the marketing for them.

Elements of a good advertisement/marketing strategy would include audience engagement, memorable, gets the message across succinctly, is easy to understand, and calls the viewer to action. We can see how gamification easily meets the mark for audience engagement and the call for action, with it being an interactive game and all. As such, gamification has been a tool that people turn to for adding the element of fun into their advertisements.

m_ms_facebook_gamification

Companies engage their customers through the utilization of a simple game design interface that incorporates images of their products and encourages their target audience to purchase their products or services. The gamification of product advertising has resulted in a new form of audience engagement, and M&M’s “Eye Spy pretzel” is one of the many examples in which companies have turned to this form of advertising. M&M, in an attempt to promote their new pretzel product, released a picture in which Facebook users had to spot a pretzel amidst a large scatter of various M&Ms.

There were over 26,000 likes, 6200 shares, and 11,000 comments, which was considerably impressive for a low-budget advertisement. Here, we see how the inculcating a gaming element increases the target audience’s engagement, and willingness to consume a product.

As a result, this highlights the pros of gamifying advertisements. Gamification, when carried out online, is able to reach a wide network of people, and can engage more people at one go as compared to the traditional methods of advertising. On top of that, gamification of ads also allow for users to interact with the ad. Traditional media and print ads don’t always have this element to it, and viewers are therefore disengaged from the advertisement. The gamification of advertisements therefore overcomes these limitations of traditional advertising methods.

In the M&M gamified advertisement, we see a clear and strong branding, what with the whole picture being filled with M&Ms, and we also see how the promotion of their new product is very clear. On top of that, through searching for the pretzel, the target audience commits the memory of the product to mind and this leaves a strong impression on the viewer via user engagement. For a low cost, we can definitely see how this advertisement has paved the way to a future of gamified advertisements.

This post was written by Wong Shu Ning, our intern from TJC cruising with us in for the month of Jan 2o17. 

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