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As far as what's next in motivating and engaging users, it could be more gamification techniques. Here's a blog post I wrote for CITEworld about a startup that uses "emergent gamification metrics" as part of its software designed to help enterprises motivate employees and improve enterprise productivity. One would assume that gamification techniques that work on employees could be adapted to work on users and customers. The CEO of Social Lair, Padmanabh Dabke, talks about the hierarchy of gamification techniques in the company's blog (it's the second post from the top). In his hierarchy, "activity-based rewards" such as points and badges are on the lowest rung, so it stands to reason that the higher-rung techniques could be what's "next."