Gamification of Market Research

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In a The Emperor’s New Sneakers I noted that sampling bias and Subject Expectancy effect causes erroneous results in online panel research. There is another problem with traditional question-based market research, Rory Sutherland, the Chairman of Ogilvy, summed it up nicely in an interview June 2011:

“The conscious, rational brain isn’t the Oval Office. It isn’t there making executive decisions in our minds. It is actually the press office, issuing explanations for actions we’ve already taken.”

Traditional question-based research converses with the press office, rather than the real decision-makers within our minds and the answers it provides are in many cases;

“post-rationalisations of decisions that were anything but conscious and sequential and highly logical in the way they were made.”

Rory Sutherland Chairman Ogilvy

With this in mind we set about developing a new approach to online panel based research that gives some insight into the subconscious processes of the Oval office.

The proof of concept is called Brand Bang!, you can play it yourself on FaceBook.

Gamers click on blocks to dissolve them and reveal parts of a mark or logo. The player guess what the logo is and are given points for getting the answer correct.
Gamers click on blocks to dissolve them and reveal parts of a mark or logo. The player guesses what the logo is and are given points for getting the answer correct.

Gamers win more points for guessing correctly with as few blocks removed as possible.
Gamers win more points for guessing correctly with as few blocks removed as possible.

When a gamer reaches 30,000 points we plant a tree for them – have fun AND make the world a little better!
When a gamer reaches 30,000 points we plant a tree for them – have fun AND make the world a little better!

Although Brand Bang is just a proof of concept it’s easy to see how games like this can be used to:

  • Support branding agencies in understanding a mark’s equities and thereby reduce risk when evolving a mark or logo
  • Give quick feedback on the effectiveness of marketing campaigns
  • Gain insights from people who would not join an online research panel

The fundamental benefit of gamification is that it does not rely on traditional question based research that can only access the conscious mind. The game mechanic is the research tool, gamers provide insights into their subconscious models of their internal world as they play.

Please note Brand Bang! Is a proof of concept, the logos and trademarks used in BrandBang! have not been sponsored by the respective logo and or mark owners, except where explicitly noted.

If we are using a logo and or mark in BrandBang! that belongs to you and you want us to stop using it please email us on stopusingmylogo@brand-bang.com and we’ll comply with your request.