Gamifying Create Better Impact Games

Create Better Impact LogoSo as you may know Create Better Impact Games is my company.  I design games around making the world a better place which I know will one day be worthy of winning awards from Games for Change. Right now, this is a little tiny company with a little tiny budget.  Not that one day it won’t be able to hold its own with the big boys, but for now marketing is not the top priority.

As I got ready to bring Waste Not to market using an Indiegogo Campaign I had to think seriously about how to approach marketing. While I have a lot of people in my contacts I couldn’t be sure who would actually have natural interest and who might need some convincing.

Being a game designer I tried to think of ways to make liking or signing up on social media fun and engaging to the community.  This process is called gamification and everyone and their mother is currently trying to apply it to their web presence.  I am lucky that it is part of my natural reaction to communications.

Waste Not Logo
What are you going to do with it?

Back to the point.  There I was at the start of a campaign trying to raise money to print Waste Not.  My Facebook page for both CBI Games and Waste Not were relatively new with little to now following, I had just begun a Twitter presence for Waste Not, and I had nothing on Google+.  So in response I decided to give away a version of my game for free via social media.  You heard me, for free.

I figured that if people got a chance to play the game, even if slightly different interactions than with having a deck of cards, that they’d be more likely to ‘like’ and engage with the marketing of the brand.  In this case, I was seeking to let the game speak for itself.

Now I’ve been going forward with the understanding that this deck of cards will be able to be used in many ways.  That will always happen when you give someone a flexible tool, is that they will begin to bend it and play with it.  In fact many of the stories that we know from childhood have changed over the centuries.  The basic story is still there to communicate the archetypal hero/ine’s journey but the details change.

Well that’s exactly what I’m seeing happening with Waste Not on Social Media.  While the instructions were to share the status so that others could see what you were liking and playing people tended to comment on the Waste Not status.  While this did not garner the amazing viral experience I was hoping for, I did get the benefit of seeing how people began to play the game.  And let me tell you it was fun!  Yes, my games are fun for me too.  Especially when I get to watch others play.

While I’ve let go of the control over the rules and will continue to allow for this project to flow and grow, I’m glad that I undertook this experiment in the gamification of my own marketing.  I think overall those that played did have fun and many of them played several times.  What I’m seeing now is a small but committed group of people who are totally engaged.  I’d prefer this any day to a large, unengaged group.  My hypothesis is that as long as I follow the same theory of engagement that as the following grows it may be smaller initially but they will be more valuable relationships.

Update on Updates

You like me, you really like me!

Lately I’ve been getting tremendous feedback from people stating how much they enjoy the campaign updates, and how much they look forward to them.  Wow!  Thanks!!

You are excited when new updates and newsletters post.  You are happy for Waste Not’s success.  How lucky am I to be a part of a community, made up of both people that I know and those that I don’t, that is so engaged with the process of creating a better world that they look forward to it?  I’d say that I couldn’t be happier.

So what’s the next step?  Well, there are 8 days remain in the Indiegogo campaign and I’d love to build this community more.  Let me know what you’d like to see in the updates, share a picture of something the you reused or upcycled around your house, or maybe tell me how you are planning on using your deck of cards…  Don’t forget you are welcome to check Waste Not on Facebook or Twitter

Also important, tonight I will be videoing playing the game for your entertainment so look forward to some fun Saturday morning videos.

Support Waste Not on Indiegogo!

Crowdfunding Reflections, Day 2

I know.  I’ll create a whirlwind and then get inside for the ride.  It’ll be a great idea!

Waste Not ImageWell that’s basically what I’ve done. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled, exhilarated, overjoyed, and full of love and gratitude.  Why?  Well, I get to be the one to bring Waste Not as a card and online game into the world using Indiegogo.   In addition to the wonderful lovey thoughts I’m also tired, my forearms and wrists hurt, and I can’t seem to figure out why my to do list is getting longer even when I’m working more than I’m sleeping.  Any crowd funding campaign will take a lot of energy and now, two days in, I don’t regret this at all.

I would love your help in this endeavor.  Contribute and get yourself a perk.  Share via Social Media.  Comment on the page.

Thank you with all my heart!