Decoding Gamification!

Ever wondered why we love playing games??

We play games because we experience emotions that are closely related to the main factors of happiness

Especially because games involve so many entertaining and amusing elements that in many ways ful-fills our very basic motivations

Hence that’s why we tend to enjoy and connect better whenever we are made to perform, learn and understand things in a fun way.

We have seen how gamification of learning has made education more meaningful and engaging. Students feel motivated to learn by using video game design and game elements in learning environments.

But is this kind of strategy a valid marketing option for the pharmaceutical industry?

I say yes, because of the current advancements in technology and, in particular, mobile technology have allowed for the explosion of a variety of gamification initiatives in many contexts. Some of these contexts include mobile and web applications and tools that reward and broadcast healthy eating, drinking, and exercise habits, such as Fitocracy, BACtrack and Fitbit.

Gamification has got a critical role to play in Pharmaceutical and Healthcare sector, especially in compliance, building awareness and encouraging patients to take initiative towards a healthy lifestyle.

It can also play a crucial role in research with sales reps, internal staff training and innovation. We could even involve websites for healthcare professionals (HCPs) and use game design principles to engage, educate and up-sell HCP’s

Few famous Examples of Gamification in Pharma Marketing:

Gamification in Pharma Marketing DTC

One of the good example of gamification in pharma marketing is GoMeals, a set of applications developed used by Sanofi-Aventis U.S. GoMeals is created for people living with diabetes and promotes Sanofi’s diabetes drug Apdira.


GoMeals® Application for Healthy Living

The app, available on the web and for smartphones encourages users to make healthy choices with features for eating healthy, staying active and tracking blood glucose levels. GoMeals allows patients to see how their daily habits impact their diabetes. It also provides HCPs with the ability to see how their patient is actually doing. GoMeals uses game design elements providing users clear reports on “burnt calories”, intake from their meals, and glucose readings.

Gamification for CME

In the field of CME (Continuing Medical Education) gamification is seen as one of the ways to retain interest of the HCPs. One of the examples is Septris a web-based mobile application focused on Sepsis education. Created by Stanford University School of Medicine,  Septris may be used on iOS, Android and from desktop web browser. To achieve its learning objectives it introduces a game in which user is diagnosing and treating virtual “patients” while learning about Sepsis.

Gamification for Medicine training

Astrazeneca developed Go To Jupiter – a Game Based Learning Solution, which was used to teach  500 agents about a new medicine. Astrazeneca’s agents have to earn points to be the first to reach a Stadium (which represents the official launch event of the medicine and where agents, answering questions using a remote control, can earn new points to improve their game ranking). The objective of developing this game based learning solution was to teach 500 agents about a new medicine, keeping costs down hence boosting an effective voluntary e-learning system

In the web game, agents can get points by answering quiz and playing different mini-games focused on the features of a new product.

The success rate could be inferred by Astra Zeneca’s gamified medicine training getting 97% of their large network of agents to participate, with a 99% Completion Rate.

Gamification in Pharma Marketing: Way Forward!

Gamification in pharma marketing goes hand in hand with mHealth, and as mobile healthcare grows there will be more of game design elements in pharma marketing campaigns.

Current focus of pharma marketers is on gamification in direct to consumermarketing. Indeed gamification as a tactic can be very efficient in increasing patient compliance to the prescribed treatment.

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