Brand Resilience: A must-read for protecting brand value

Brand Resilience, by Jonathan Copulsky of Deloitte, is a must-read for anyone interested in or responsible for protecting brand value in our social-media induced world where every customer, partner, employee and competitor has the power to impact your brand (amplify or sabotage it) at lightening speed. It is focused, specific and relevant, relevant, relevant. Not a day goes by that there are not more stories, many of them very high-profile, about this topic in the news. This book is an excellent guide and framework for thinking about and executing a plan to maintain resilience of your brand.

Calculating Inbound Marketing ROI with Attribution – by Matthew Buckley

If you’re part of the 79% of marketers who say they are not successful at tracking ROI of content then you might want to check out this article. Be data-driven.

Managing Brand Risk

In his book, “Brand Resilience”, Jonathan Copulsky of Deloitte Consulting talks about how to manage risk and recovery of brand reputation issues like this one with FanDuel and DraftKings. . Will the scandal hurt their brands? Building your brand, Managing risk

We need better user experiences

The irony – the bank asks you to print a receipt for your reward to go paperless. The cool new meditation app, that you downloaded but haven’t signed up for, spams you every day to let you know that you’re missing out on being less stressed. We can do better!! #digitalmarketingage.

11 Ways to Stay Relevant

1. Mentor 2. Experiment 3. Create change 4. Champion improvement 5. Stay the course, specific and focused 6. Know your competition 7. Go with the flow 8. Spot trends 9. Don’t chase everything 10. Stay curious, not concerned 11. Be a little bit better everyday !

The Low-Down on Gamification

Amy Lipton’s WMS Podcast on Global Gaming Business

Badgeville steps up with acquisition of

By Chloe Della Costa

During “Gamification Summit” held in San Francisco last month, Badgeville announced the acquisition of the community from Gamify. The community also includes the “Gamification” handle on popular social networks including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Google+. Seems like a wise move since the startup recently brought in $25 million from InterWest Partners.

“With the work we put into building as the number one resource for gamification information, we wanted to hand it off to the number one gamification company in the industry, and are thrilled that Badgeville and their team will continue to grow these resources,” said Nathan Lands, CEO, Gamify, who will stay on as an advisor to “This enables us to now devote all of our time and resources into developing, the first ever HTML5 Virtual World, into a fun place to hang out and play, as well as participate in events to make a positive impact on the real world.”

Kris Duggan, CEO of Badgeville, had this to say: “Badgeville is committed to not only enabling world-class companies to deploy gamification techniques, but also to leading the charge in sharing best practices and education for the entire industry…This acquisition will enable us to offer world-class best practices on how to deploy gamification across a variety of industries. We plan to invest heavily into the community to allow others to participate in the development of these best practices.”

Duggan did not reveal the terms of the deal, but noted that it was for the community and namespace assets only. The company was not bought — Duggan called it a cash and equity deal. “We want to really go big with it,” Duggan says, “It’s going to take us some time, but we want it to be the place where people have conversations and share best practices around gamification. We think not only dedicating headcount to the community would be really helpful — a community manager, content developers, and whatnot — but the other thing we’re really excited about is that we’ll be deploying Badgeville on the community.”

Badgeville doesn’t plan to remove the content Gamify already posted. The company will simply build on what is pre-existing with new content. These changes will be visible to users in the coming months. Duggan also noted that one thing that made the community appealing is that Gamify had put a lot of work into its properties resulting in a very high pagerank on Google.




Foursquare says goodbye to gamification with new redesign

By Chloe Della Costa

With its recent redesign, Foursquare has shifted its focus from check-ins and badges to social updates, deals, and algorithmic recommendations. The app was long overdue for a revamp. Once popular with users wanting to check in to locations, compete, earn points, and even reach “mayor” status, Foursquare’s success has certainly fallen off. When the company realized that users were no longer using Foursquare to check in, it was time to look for a new solution to engage its user base.

The redesign was built up with days of intriguing tweets, including some with the hashtag #allnew4sq. Now unveiled to the public, the new Foursquare emphasizes discovery, rather than gamification. It’s a mobile tool to navigate new places as well as your home city.

The company is wisely tapping its huge reservoir of data gleaned from users’ check-in habits, collected since the company launched in 2009, to remake itself as a social media application, recommendation engine, and deal service, all in one. According to Alex Rainert, Foursquare’s head of product, the redesign was largely motivated by user feedback and recommendations. With this help, Foursquare has become a sort of souped-up Yelp for mobile, with more than just user reviews, but also reviews from publications, deals and coupons, tips, and tagged photos.

The app features a more seamless user experience, design elements inspired by Path and Pinterest, and a simplified navigation bar, with three tabs rather than five. It also boasts “smarter” recommendations for restaurants, bars, and other venues. Not only that, but your recommendations are based on your friends’ habits and activities as well. The new “Explore” tab (which has replaced the check-in tab) is integrated with Google Maps, so you get a visual of what’s nearby. “Explore” also allows you to browse (rather than solely search for new venues), much like the Facebook newsfeed or trends on Twitter.

Now that check-ins are low priority, the core gamification features that once defined Foursquare, including the mayorship, have been pushed to the very bottom of each venue’s page. So it seems the company is putting its full faith in the redesign and the new focus on recommendations to garner more success.

But will it be enough to keep the company going? Foursquare recently announced the departure of its co-founder, and the core staff is rumored to be somewhat unstable as well. This may be Foursquare’s only chance to reinvent itself and escape the fate of becoming a forgotten trend.


How gaming can teach you decision-making skills

By Chloe Della Costa

Games and gaming elements are becoming useful for a variety of industries. Rather than solely providing amusement, “serious” games from WILL Interactive are meant to help players make better life choices. The company creates Virtual Experience Immersive Learning Simulations (VEILS), which are interactive movies in which users make serious decisions for the learning experience.

With these games you can take on the role of soldier, making tough calls with very little time, or learn how to avoid foreclosure in a down economy. And making mistakes is the point of the game. This is what teaches you a lesson, so when you start the game again, you can apply that knowledge and try again.

The company has released 70 games on topics ranging from military, engineering, financial decision-making, and youth education. The website states that WILL is the only entity that “holds the patent for the interactive behavior modification process that has been shown in independent studies to improve individual’s knowledge, attitudes and behaviors.” This could be the first step to a new form of educational media.

By “serious games” the company means “games that are designed for a primary purpose other than pure entertainment. Higher end serious games are designed to inherently engage their target audience through the use of interactive gaming attributes, which, in turn, ultimately educates them on how to solve a specific problem, task or objective.”

WILL Interactive patented VEILS in 1998. And since then, this idea has evolved into what could possibly change the face of educational and training programs across many industries. With VEILS, players get to become characters in a movie, and each character action yields different results. Thus, with VEILS, the more you play, and the more paths you attempt to take, the more you learn.

The game “Ways Home,” developed in cooperation with Fannie Mae, helps players navigate different avenues to avoid foreclosure, and in “Leading the Way,” developed with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, returning soldiers can prepare to deal with the possible hardships they might face upon re-entering society. No matter what role the user takes on, these games are distinct in that they help to prepare people for overwhelming and complicated obstacles. These are issues that don’t come with an easy guidebook.

The company just launched the WILL Interactive Challenge (, which calls on players to solve a real-world problem using the game’s interactive technology. The competition began on December 14, 2011 and ended April 20, 2012. Contestants created proposals detailing a virtual experience that could impact the world in a positive way. The winner will be announced on June 6 and will be awarded $500,000 to develop the idea using WILL’s technology.

The company has made a progressive move here, turning to crowdsourcing to move its mission forward. When it comes to a concept like “serious games,” the possibilities appear endless. What is the best use of this technology? What kind of social good could be done with the help of virtual simulations? The company asked for proposals that addresses a specific “pressing social issue.” What might that be? Health care? Corporate greed? Soon we’ll learn what winning idea will be in the works.



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