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Zizzi has upset the rather boring restaurant email voucher model by introducing simple gamification.
We'll take a look at the games and why they make perfect sense in terms of engagement and refining contact strategy.
The aim of the game
As part of Zizzi’s three-year campaign, to raise £1m for Cancer Research UK, the restaurant chain chose to invest in gamification.
Like most casual dining brands, Zizzi wants to improve engagement for a number of reasons:
- to increase redemption of existing offers.
- to enable data capture to broaden its audience.
- to encourage restaurant visits.
The typical email or printed voucher is often indicative of a one-off engagement, and Zizzi wanted to change this dynamic.
So, the chain used 3radical’s gamification platform to promote a number of competitions and voucher deals using the buzz around the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
The aim was to combine mobile and in-restaurant experiences across Zizzi's 140 outlets that were fun and rewarding for the customer.
Customers were able to access an online scratch card via their smartphones – made available through Zizzi’s Facebook page and its mobile-optimized website, as well as heavily promoted in-restaurant.
Rewards included instant vouchers and entry into a draw for the opportunity to train with England Rugby teammates Jonny May and Alex Corbisiero, or to win a trip to New York.
Crucially, consumers who donated to the charitable cause (Stand Up to Cancer) could boost their competition entries from one to five, a great way of encouraging donations by offering something in return.
There was a similar incentive to share on social media and get friends involved with the game.
Messaging to each individual post-play was based on their behaviour and preferences.
Instant vouchers were delivered, and their redemption monitored and built into future communications and rewards, through a real-time integration with Eagle Eye's SaaS promotion platform.
Increasing CTR, engagements, donations and new diners
The email campaign to promote the mobile game and competition has seen a three times increase in click through rate (over regular voucher emails).
Average plays were around 4.75 throughout the campaign, a strong figure that demonstrates the value of gamification as a marketing tool in ensuring more than just one-off engagements.
There were nearly half a million plays by 84,000 players. This led to 37,500 extra diners, 8,500 Facebook Likes and over 1,000 donations to Stand Up to Cancer.
Building out new games as a USP for Zizzi
Zizzi has since launched an online board game, with similar aims (competition entries, data capture and voucher uptake) but with even greater in-game engagement.
The chain is also expanding its use of 3radical's platform to create a gamified app which will allow customers to take advantage of location-based technologies and drive footfall by offering deals to consumers when they are in close proximity to a restaurant.
Making a vice a virtue
Games aren't right for everyone but those who like them will engage again and again. It makes complete sense for restaurant chains to encourage the trade-off of discounts for data by using a more fun and engaging platform.
The voucher system used to feel like a bit of a vice for restaurants. Yes it's good for business, but does feel a little like it devalues the brand (with the implication that paying full price is somehow not good value).
Gamification is one step towards turning this vice into a virtue.
As one employee says in the video below, "it's different", it sets the brand apart, is great for families and helps Zizzi build out that all important contact strategy.