Social gaming has taken a life of its own. Companies like PlayFish and Zynga are creating massively popular social games that are attracting and capturing the attention of millions of users.
But what makes these social games so popular and successful?
Why are people motivated to play, it’s just a game after all? If you try some of the social games available, many are built around the sense of achievement. Gaining levels, winning awards and being at the top of the leader board are examples of how social games are motivating users to play on a regular basis.
Many successful social games release new updates on a weekly basis. The updates are usually not major changes to the game experience, but are new items, designs or objectives that keep the game experience fresh and entertaining. Stale content becomes boring.
Social gaming is about the social experience. Many successful games seamlessly integrate friend/social interactions as part of the game experience. For example, you need your friend’s help to open a crate or you are encouraged to share items with your friends. These social interactions also help these games become popular because your actions in the game may be shared with friends who are not yet playing the game.
Most social games are free to play, but provide users with the option of paying for premium content. Premium content may allow users to get exclusive items or give them a boost over other players. This revenue model helps attract a larger audience because it’s free to play, but it also has a profitable revenue stream because players who enjoy the game for free, may be enticed to pay for game upgrades.
Think of ways to apply these elements in your online strategy.