Gamification for Enhanced Sales Performance

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1 Gamification for Enhanced Sales Performance Executive Summary Engaged Enterprise is a new term used to describe today s leading-edge companies that are successfully and actively engaging every aspect of their organizations their employees, their partners and their customers into a cohesive, collaborative and more effective communities. Many of these companies are weaving gamification programs into their corporate cultures to achieve an increased level of engagement, and the result has been a measurable improvement in their bottom lines. Properly executed gamification strategies rolled out across sales departments have proven instrumental in improving revenue, and when implemented more broadly, employees from many different functional areas are empowered to positively impact the sales process. As with any successful corporate-wide initiative, careful consideration and planning is instrumental to success. Executive sponsorship and active participation is essential and game mechanics must be aligned with corporate goals. While several gamification solutions exist today, there are some key components that companies should look for when selecting a provider. Driving Sales Performance Gamification is the integration of game mechanics and theory into non-game applications and processes in the workplace. Simply put, the concept applies a game-oriented approach to business-focused activities, making them more engaging. Game mechanics motivate participants to get involved and solve problems Bridge Pkwy Suite 201 Redwood City, CA Today, gamification is being integrated into a wide range of business functions, including sales and marketing, customer engagement, employee incentives and workplace performance. When successfully implemented into the sales process, gamification can support improved CRM adoption and usage, along with

2 More than 70% of Global 2000 organizations will have a gamified application by [Source: Gartner Research] company-wide collaboration to support the sales effort. The result: sales pipelines are stronger, sales quotas are reached, revenue is higher and profits are greater. Driving Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Technology Adoption and Usage Since the late 90s, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology has revolutionized the way companies manage and track sales revenues and forecasts. Although the adoption of CRM applications has been shown to dramatically enhance sales performance and drive corporate revenue, it s not uncommon for quota-carrying salespeople to resist incorporating these tools into their every day work lives. In turn, companies that suffer from inconsistent or sporadic use of corporate CRM applications often miss sales opportunities and quotas, and ultimately undermine their potential profitability. The C-Suite has been searching for an answer to the problem of inconsistent CRM adoption. Today, many have found it in gamification a proven solution that drives CRM adoption among sales professionals as it motivates teams, boosts participation and builds company loyalty. The key to gamification success is to remain focused on strategies that will, without fail, successfully align teams and their activities with business goals. Effective gamification drives sales performance and helps sales professionals meet and exceed their quotas through collaboration, information sharing and the enthusiastic assistance of every employee in the organization. The Winning Psychology of Competition Salespeople, by nature, tend to be naturally competitive and thrive in environments where they can compete both individually and as a team. Gamification allows them to be recognized for their performance and contributions, while innovating through collaboration, which drives higher overall team achievement. An important component of healthy competition is rewarding behavior such as CRM adoption. Focusing exclusively on results can create a self-defeating environment because the same top players (with the largest accounts) are likely to win every time, demotivating others. Rewarding behavior gives everyone on the sales team (including B- and C-level players who make up the majority) more incentive to participate. Score! Driving Collaboration Across the Sales Team Sharing information with peers and external departments is not a natural inclination for many sales professionals, who are often both competitive and suspicious of their colleagues. But a gamified process can change that. A gamified sales culture can drive collaborative behavior among the sales team, incentivizing them to share information openly and frequently with each other, with executives and with appropriate affiliated departments. In a gamified culture, sales professionals assist with one-another wherever possible by providing pertinent information, illustrating their own accounts as successful examples to new qualified leads, or providing insight as to how a new prospect might be best approached. There is no limit to the knowledge that can be shared among sales professionals and teams that collaborate. Revenue is directly impacted more deals close, deals close faster, the individual deal value rises, and overall sales volume increases. Collaborative sales teams have been proven to produce more revenue through more won deals, an acceleration in deal closure times, and a higher average cost-of-sales. 2

3 Bluewolf Enhances Social Collaboration with Gamification The Player: Bluewolf, a global consulting firm specializing in enterprise agility. The Goal: Create a culture of collaboration both internal and external. Increase employee engagement to drive customer value. Boost inbound marketing efforts and better leverage social media communication. Step 1: Bluewolf began with a company survey to learn how employees use social networks and what might prevent them from greater engagement. Concerns revealed by the survey were addressed through the Bluewolf #GoingSocial Resource Center a multi-media portal used to train and explain how employees can get started, who they should follow, and how they can drive business Step 2: They created Bluewolf Pack Profiles to showcase the personal brand of each employee on the corporate website. Pack profiles include direct links to the individual s social networks, all managed from within Salesforce. Information about the individual such as functional and vertical expertise as well as recent blog posts, case studies, twitter updates and white papers published on the Bluewolf site are easily accessible. This information, shared with customers and prospects, creates a network of brand ambassadors with a human face. Equipped with appropriate tools, training and motivation, employees become thought leaders that add significant value to social conversations, thus elevating the Bluewolf brand as an educational, expert resource. Step 3: Bluewolf gamified the experience by installing game mechanics around internal and external collaboration. Employees were awarded points for: Filling out fields in their pack profile Posting and commenting within the internal communication tool Publishing blog posts Sharing content with external social networks Receiving inbound clicks Rewards for point accumulation range from simple badges to gift cards, limited edition Bluewolf swag, lunch with the CEO, user conference passes, and airline travel. The Results: Four months into the program, Bluewolf had experienced compelling results: Significant increase in social sharing 80% increase in blog traffic from social media 45% increase in website traffic from social media 57% increase in collaboration activity via salesforce chatter Increase in company Klout score Our challenge at Bluewolf is to increase enterprise knowledge-sharing both internally and externally. In encouraging this culture shift, we see gamification as an important part of the change management strategy. We are seeing a growing trend for integrating game mechanics into more traditional enterprise based servicers such as CRM and collaboration suites. The gamification of the enterprise and workplace provides the motivation to share data, improve customer insight and collaborate. We ve seen the success internally and, with partners like Bunchball, we anticipate similar success with clients. Corinne Sklar Vice President, Marketing, Bluewolf Once embraced by a sales department, there are common attributes found in successful gamification programs: Buy-in is top-down and bottom-up. Everyone in the organization fully understands the concept and wants to participate in the game. Managers and executives lead by example. Leaders set an example of full and enthusiastic participation. Onboarding for new team members is fast and effective. New hires are quickly assimilated into the organization a process that goes beyond orientation as it reduces turnover and increases the likelihood of individual and team success. Training and coaching for sales team members is standard and ongoing Formal training in both selling skills and product knowledge is routine and supported by coaching that reinforces classroom education. CRM tools are widely adopted and utilized. Sales reps are motivated to get high-quality, accurate data rapidly into the CRM system, resulting in improved sales performance. Gamification is integrated into all sales processes. Anything that can be tracked can be gamified. Healthy competition and increased team collaboration. Rather than a star culture that focuses on a few high achievers and pits team members against one another, successful gamification recognizes individuals and rewards teamwork at the same time. Goals and metrics are clearly defined. No guesswork everyone knows what the corporate, team and individual goals are and how results are measured. Exemplary achievements are measured, recognized and rewarded Gamification provides the infrastructure to automate this process. 3

4 A step-by-step approach for implementing a successful gamification program in your organization: Work with executive management to identify key corporate objectives and ensure your game mechanics align with the company s strategic goals. Identify your Top 5-10 desired user behaviors and rank them in order of business priority Think about Success Metrics for your gamification initiative. When your program concludes, what sorts of metrics would you like to share with Executive Management? Assemble a strong internal communications team that can articulate the program s benefits Designate internal evangelists to lead the gamification initiative by example and through active participation. Their enthusiastic participation will help drive the engagement you want and increase participation. Ask program participants for their ideas to get others to join, and increase the viral exposure of your program if that makes sense. Train your teams to participate. Make gamification participation part of employee MBOs, in coaching sessions and performance reviews. Offer cool rewards that participants would be proud to share with their friends Buying Tips: Five Critical Features Every Gamification Solution Must Have 1. Rapid installation and integration. Select a program that plugs directly into your CRM solution, so information can be shared automatically. An app that s native to your CRM system employs the same interface already used in your organization, so employees won t need to learn anything new. Integration with reward vendors will further simplify administration. 2. Easy customization. Every company is different and each will require a level of customization. This should be inherent to the solution and attainable through a series of easy clicks no additional coding required. 3. Simple configuration and personalization. Different departments within an organization will have a variety of different missions, so the program must be easily configured to fit the group. Marketing activities, for example, will differ from sales activities, so each group will require department-specific customization. Similarly, the activities of a sales engineer will differ considerably from those of an account executive, so personalization to fit the individual will also be required. 4. Facilitate team competition and collaboration. A key goal of gamification is to encourage communication and drive participation. Your solution must cultivate both at its core. 5. Rich analytics. The ability to measure the success of the program is essential in determining how to maximize its potential in existing and future use scenarios. Although these are essential components to an effective gamification program, nothing is as important as selecting a proven gamification provider. Experience in this field goes a long way in helping organizations identify Best Practices Use Cases, goals and desired behaviors Publicly recognize winners at staff meetings, in sales s, with plaques, trophies and awards. Start off small. Once you nail down the basics, and your team sees how gamification benefits them, you can get more creative with new initiatives. Update your rewards frequently and establish a relevant cadence 13 Understanding your Gamification program should not be hard for your players. Include all relevant Gamification Mechanics in their profile page for quick reference. 4

5 Nitro for Salesforce Create A Sales Culture that Consistently Delivers Gamification isn t about games it s about sales results. It s about measuring and motivating, setting goals, tracking progress, and rewarding performance. Gamification can drive the behaviors in your sales team that will help the business to be successful, and at the same time, it can drive non-sales employees to participate and support the sales team by providing leads, social media outreach, timely information and thoughtful collaboration. Chances are your company already employs some game mechanics in the form of traditional sales contests. But your company can build on those programs by identifying and incentivizing the sales, marketing and communication activities that result in increased revenue generation. It can be easily done with the right provider, and the success of your company may depend on it. Nitro for Salesforce Drives Revenue; Motivates and Incentivizes Sales Teams Nitro for Salesforce from Bunchball is a plug-and-play sales incentive program for the salesforce.com application. Through proven game mechanics such as challenges, levels, team competitions, leader boards, and rewards, sales managers can motivate their sales teams, drive adoption and usage of salesforce.com, and automate their incentive program, all through a single, easy-to-implement application. Nitro for Salesforce can track and reward a broad set of actions within salesforce.com: About Bunchball Bunchball is the industry leader in gamification, an innovative way of engaging users, motivating employees and increasing customer loyalty. Bunchball offers a range of gamification solutions for companies of all sizes. Nitro, Bunchball s gamification engine, is the industry s most scalable and reliable gamification platform, serving up to 70 million unique users and 2.3 billion actions each month. Nitro enables businesses to create compelling, meaningful and enjoyable experiences for consumers, employees, and partners. Nitro is available as a platform for building customized gamification applications, and as platform-specific solutions for leading enterprise systems including Jive, Salesforce. com, and others. Make a cold call Enter a lead Convert a lead Upgrade an opportunity Win an opportunity Win a competitive opportunity Add an account Nitro for Salesforce is an AppExchange application that makes it easy to motivate your sales team while focusing them on your company s highest-priority, mission-critical activities. Nitro does the heavy lifting, automating your program for you and removing the need for manual tracking and administration. Nitro for Salesforce allows you to: Keep missions top-of-mind with a persistent salesforce.com sidebar showing user progress and challenges Create challenges that align directly with your business goals Use progress bars, newsfeeds, and levels to engage your sales team through salesforce.com Use competition to inspire and motivate your team Personalize challenges by sales role Offer virtual and real rewards right in salesforce.com Steal an account from a competitor Create a task Complete a task Post to Chatter Comment on a Chatter post Post to your social network Copyright Bunchball, Inc., All rights reserved. July 2012

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