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Gamification Blog

Gamification news, tactics, case studies and more. The official blog of Bunchball.

Loyalty 3.0 Now a New York Times Bestseller (and on Wall Street Journal, and Amazon, and Barnes & Noble, and…)


Rajat didn’t want to jinx it.

When he received word that his hot new book, Loyalty 3.0: How to Revolutionize Customer and Employee Engagement with Big Data and Gamification, was headed to the New York Times Best Seller List, he wanted to see it in print before anyone breathed a word of it.  Around here at Bunchball World Headquarters, we’ll remember those 24 hours as The Longest Day.

Well, it’s official. Loyalty 3.0 reached No. 5 on the latest New York Times Best Seller List for advice and how-to books.  The results are based on sales for the week ending June 22.

Wait…it gets better:

Portable Reputation

Rajat Paharia


You’ve probably heard the phrase “Your reputation precedes you.” And hopefully it was in a positive context. Because increasingly, it does just that. You’ve always had a personal reputation, and now you have a digital one that you build every day. And it goes everywhere you go… and beyond.

The concept of a portable reputation has been around for years--you can go back as far as 2005 to see technology writer Robert Hof wondering on, “Are Online Reputations Portable?”


Loyalty is Dead! Long Live Loyalty!

Rajat Paharia


If you’re like most people, you’re a member of 18 different loyalty programs.  That number may surprise you, but as studies have shown, memberships add up fast: pet store rewards cards, cash back credit cards, frequent flier programs. Companies collectively spend billions on these programs in the hopes of establishing a meaningful relationship with their customers.

So are those investments paying off? How truly loyal are you to those 18 brands? Put more explicitly, would you turn down a better deal from someone else?

The reality is that traditional loyalty programs are dead. Why? Because they’re built on a foundation that hasn’t evolved to meet the needs of 21st century businesses, technology and people. The relationship they cultivate is largely transactional: your status and progress within the program is driven only by frequency or size of purchases. And they do little to build an emotional bond with the customer – the bond necessary for true loyalty.

Big Data – and Building Loyalty From the Inside

Rajat Paharia


All day long, you generate data. Whenever you interact with an enterprise application, social network, website or mobile device, you add another drop to an endless stream of information that describes what interests and motivates you.

Now add that up among everyone you know whose actions are also mediated by technology, and then add everyone you don’t know. Then add data from satellites and video cameras and sensors, and you begin to understand why people are talking about big data.

How big? Google’s Eric Schmidt estimated recently that between the dawn of civilization and 2003, the human race created 5 exabytes of information. That’s 5 billion gigabytes, which sounds like an awful lot, and it is.

It’s also the amount of data we now generate every two days.

GSummit, Rockstars and Loyalty


Today’s loyalty programs are like the Bruce Willis character in the movie The Sixth Sense. They’re dead, they just don’t know it yet.

Loyalty programs have failed at creating actual loyalty, at keeping up with a rapidly changing world, and at engaging all the constituents that matter: customers, partners and employees. It’s time to take back the word “loyalty” and make it actually mean something.

This isn’t news to those who attended GSummit 2013 (April 16-18 in San Francisco) and the Gamification Rockstar Road Show (April 23 in New York).  At both events, Rajat Paharia, the Father of gamification, described how we’re now entering the age of Loyalty 3.0 – which takes us well beyond basic incentives and rewards programs.  By utilizing the Big Data generated by your constituents as they constantly interact with you online, combining it with an understanding of human motivation, and using the data-driven motivational techniques of gamification, you can motivate, engage and create true loyalty

It’s About DAM time


It’s not what you think.

DAM stands for digital asset management – in other words, the valuable content produced by broadcast networks, studios, ad agencies and enterprises everywhere. DAM is a growing field because our increasingly connected world means digital assets like video and images don’t have to be one-and-done properties.  It can cost a lot to produce those assets, and companies want to derive the greatest value from them.

@ChurchillClub: The Gamification of Everything


Here are three facts:

1. Rajat Paharia is widely recognized as the father of gamification.

2. The Churchill Club is Silicon Valley’s premier business and technology forum, known for pointed and predictive conversation.

3. On Tuesday, April 30, Rajat will join fellow visionaries in a Churchill Group panel conversation titled “The Gamification of Everything.

The panel will explore how applying game mechanics to non-game environments can help companies shape the behaviors of critical audiences in ways that strengthen brands, increase revenues and improve loyalty. Rajat will be joined by Patrick Salyer, CEO, Gigya, and Jim Whitehead, chair of the Computer Science Dept. UC Santa Cruz, and founder and president of the Society for the Advancement of the Science of Digital Games, in the discussion moderated by David Fetherstonhaugh, behavioral economist at IDEO.

Talking Customer Engagement with Ray Wang

Ashley Verrill


It started with junk mail. That became spam, and now it's happening in social media – people are constantly bombarded with demands for their attention, and as a result have started to tune out. So what's a marketer to do?

Technology thought leader and Constellation Research CEO R “Ray” Wang says the future of any business depends on their ability to engage the customer in a way that is genuine, but not “creepy.” This doesn't mean necessarily following British Airways example, using facial recognition scanning to see when a customer arrived so you can engage with them.


The World According to Rock Stars


2012 was a very good year for gamification – and for Bunchball. Enterprises drank deeply from the gamification well last year as they applied game mechanics to websites, business tools and applications, social networks and online experiences.

For evidence, look no further than Bunchball’s own experience in 2012. Last year we added hundreds of new customers, with enterprise customers making up the lion’s share: companies like Ford CanadaNetAppPSS World Medical and Intercontinental Hotels Group.

And on April 23, executives from several of those leading enterprise brands will gather in New York to share how gamification has helped them drive revenues, increase engagement, and help create more loyal and lasting customer relationships. It’s the latest stop for the Gamification Rockstar Roadshow, which will feature keynotes from Jive’s Sydney Sloan USA Network/NBC Universal’s Jesse Redniss. Attendees will also hear from Bluewolf, Get Schooled, Kraft Canada, Maritz Canada/Ford Canada, Met-Rx, Perficient, Thomson-Reuters and Zamzee.

Welcome to Gamification

Caitlin Donaldson


I began working as a Data Analyst at Bunchball 4 months ago so I’m still relatively new to the world of gamification.  From the first time I learned of the concept, I was fascinated by its potential.  It is an idea that has been around for years with examples like the  Girl Scouts and airplane loyalty programs.  Gamification is not only refining this form of motivation, but also adapting it to the digital world we live in today.

Here are some common misconceptions I’ve found that may help your understanding of gamification: