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While it has been praised for its ability to foster creativity and experimentation for both work and learning, concerns have been flagged around its riskiness. These anxieties are particularly apparent in the world of stock market trading.

Companies such as Robinhood have been celebrated in some quarters for democratising the stock market. But regulatory bodies have accused the people behind certain trading apps of manipulating users’ actions in trading. Established investors and regulatory bodies continue to reel from other tectonic shifts in market trading practices, such as the emergence of “meme stocks”, as in the case of the GameStop saga in early 2021.

To refashion a well-worn comparison, instead of likening Wall Street to a casino, is gamification truly turning it into one? Or is the influence of trading apps being overplayed, when the biggest seismic shifts to market trading are driven by social media? This article takes a closer look at these two practices to find out.

Trading has never been more fun

In principle, to ‘gamify’ means to map the mechanics of video game playing onto non-gaming scenarios. As The Conversation writes, game playing influences creativity and learning because it can “lower the barriers of established behavioural norms and routines by offering new rules and sometimes even new realities”.

However, the increasing accessibility of trading due to this added fun factor is being blamed for its destabilising influence. A new generation of young traders has emerged, riding the exciting riptide of market volatility in the same way they would from playing Call of Duty, only with little capital investment. Digital trading platform Robinhood Markets, for instance, popularised stock market trading through in-built reward systems.

Critics of gamification allege that it nurtures an addiction to trading the markets, while simultaneously minimising the dangers and hence distorting the reality of market trading. Robinhood has consequently removed some of its game-like interface features, such as confetti and lottery-like scratchcards, which allegedly incited inexperienced investors to trade the markets in a trivial way that encourages excessive risk-taking. However, these features were defended by Robinhood as a way to “cheer on customers through the milestones in their financial journeys”. By August 2021, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) began an inquiry into these practices, claiming that they were being used by online brokerages and advisers to encourage people into trading more stock and other securities thereby overtrading their accounts.

Critics of gamification allege that it nurtures an addiction to trading the markets, while simultaneously minimising the dangers and hence distorting the reality of market trading.

A social dilemma

Encouraging younger investors into the market with game-like features is not limited to trading apps. For those with even the most cursory understanding of the stock market, the impact of social media on investor trading has not gone unnoticed, as the GameStop saga highlighted. Dubbed ‘the Reddit revolt’, amateur investors used social media to influence the share price of GameStop, a bricks-and-mortar video game retailer. Members of a forum, named WallStreetBets, clubbed together to collectively buy shares in this faltering company, pushing up prices astronomically and forcing short sellers to buy back their positions in an attempt to limit their losses.

Social media was used to intensify trends and information exchanges, and the companies targeted were subsequently referred to as “meme stocks”. In one stroke, these Redditors sent a message to the hedge funds that were short-selling undervalued underdog businesses. What’s more, by codifying market rules in a David vs. Goliath, game-like battle, much of the complicated jargon around trading was stripped away.

Who holds the key to the future?

The distinction between social media’s influence and gamification is not so clear-cut. Robinhood was the app used by many of these savvy, Average Joes to upend the elite world of trading. But in the end, Robinhood stood accused of siding with Wall Street when it instigated trading halts and limited the amount of shares in GameStop that its users could purchase. As Milton Ezrati of Forbes writes, with GameStop, “there was no good or bad involved, unless stupidly taking excessive risk is somehow immoral”.

A confidence game

Following the GameStop saga, the SEC intervened to ban trading for six company names who were suspected of being “targets of apparent social media attempts to artificially inflate their stock price”. In a similar vein, Bloomberg has argued that Robinhood has made trading “so easy, and maybe even too hard to resist”. Reconfigured, gamified app trading is at odds with serious, long-term investment. It might also blunt the reality of material consequences for parties with professional investments, such as pensions and mortgages, and not just fat-cats.

However, in a recent study, Chief Economist at NASDAQ, Phil Mackintosh, downplayed the long-term influence of trading apps, citing home-working and lockdowns as reasons for the surge in the use of these platforms. In the same report, Sapna Patel, Head of Market Research at Morgan Stanley, also dismissed concerns that gamification is increasing overall risk levels. While increased accessibility may help users navigate the market, the content is what rules the roost: “the what to trade, the when to trade and how often to trade, is driven by social media influencers, whether it's the Elon Musks of the world tweeting about GameStop, or it's the Reddit-like platforms where they're making recommendations. That's what's driving retail to trade more so”. Academic reports have similarly reinforced this view. 

Balancing the scales?

There’s a case to be made for levelling the playing field. And markets are, and always have been, risky places in which to dabble, for professionals and the retail crowd. Gamified platforms do not explicitly encourage this volatility, but they can intensify it. There’s a danger that participants can lose large amounts of money on these platforms, perhaps because certain behaviours are encouraged by design.

Looking back to the events surrounding GameStop in early 2021, we can see how social media sparked an unpredictable contagion. Given the difficulty of regulating social media, this is a broader and more fraught conversation in its own right. After all, it wasn’t until Elon Musk sent one of his infamous tweets that GameStop’s stock price soared like a SpaceX rocket.

“It’s been an exciting few months for The Chocolate Teapot Company “TCTC”. Despite the difficulties we are still encountering utilising the product for its primary purpose, we are confident we shall achieve planned sales and profitability in the foreseeable future. We were delighted to have completed the merger of the company with the Special Purpose Acquisition Corporation “Mooncheese II” in December for $2 billion. The subsequent dramatic rise in TCTC’s stock price demonstrated the market’s long-term engagement with our future plans, including our new range of digitised Chocolate and Marshmallow toothbrushes.

The success of the TCTC proposition, and investor faith we will perfect chocolate technology to address the environmental imperative of replacing metals and plastics in high-temperature liquid vessels in the digital economy, was conclusively demonstrated by the stock’s rise from $2.57 last year to $483 in January 2021. We were one of the most discussed stocks on a widely read retail-investor discussion site. 

We were particularly delighted to have been described as a “187-bagger”, even though none of our chocolate tea-pots are currently designed for that number of tea-bags.”

                                                                                     -Barnby T. Yorkshire, CEO & Founder of The Chocolate Teapot Company

Coincidently, GameStop, the US games company that improbably rose from $2 to $480, was also a 187-bagger for some investors who timed their entry and exit perfectly.

Unlike The Chocolate Teapot Company, GameStop’s rise provides a great illustration of a truly insane market. Not a single professional analyst, market commentator or stock picker has had anything positive to say about the firm. Everyone knew it was likely to end up as the next dead retailer – a bricks-and-mortar shop in a digital world, as obsolete as Blockbuster Video. Unsurprisingly, smart Wall Street hedge funds were shorting the stock.

That was until a chap who once worked in marketing for a US trust company started saying positive things about it on the WallStreetBets subreddit. Despite the fact he apparently is a CFA charter holder and passed all of his securities exams, he started making videos about what a great company GameStop was and hung around on website stock boards pumping his positive story.

Last year, he had less than 600 social media followers. This year, Reddit users found his “Roaring Kitty” comments and the photos he’d posted of his rising profits in the stock. The price of GameStop went ballistic. When The Wall Street Journal interviewed him in the middle of the madness, he was sitting on a $33 million profit on his position.

A horde of retail radicals piled into the stock, and after being fed the tale about how some funds were short, they’d turned buying the stock on their RobinHood free trading apps into a holy crusade against Wall Street. They urged each other forward, driven by memes like“This is the way” as they were buying more and more, pushing the price higher. They scored an “enormous” victory by crushing a hedge fund caught on the wrong side of the buying pressure.

Some people claim to have made lots of money – perversely as many are now bragging about how much they have subsequently lost. But, the “ballistic” stock price trajectory means that what went up, came down just as steeply. A whole number of greater fools held on at the top and, as the price tumbled, they inevitably made friends with the big round friendly thing approaching them at speed…the ground.

As they say, it’s not the fall that kills you. It’s the sudden stop at the bottom.

GameStop, SPACs, Bitcoin and Tesla sum up the modern investment age. These “meme” stocks swim in a sea of ill-informed social media comment, outright fake-news, and unsupportable opinions presented as irrefutable facts.

It’s led to insane speculation, further fuelled by ultra-low interest rates that make stocks look the best relative investment value. Many of the millions of young millennials and Gen Ys and Zs stuck at home because of COVID-19 lockdowns have been attracted to stock trading sites like RobinHood and the gamification of the stock market these apps have created. A few new retail investors have made off like butchers’ dogs with the sausages – unable to believe how easy it is to pick winners and see their initial investments double, triple or more in today’s ‘the-only-way-is-up’ market.

Ultimately, we all know that most retail investors will likely lose.

Those of us slightly longer in the tooth, greyer in the lockdown beard, and less inclined to gamble the retirement pot… are now consumed with FAMO or Fury At Missing Out. If only we’d bought Bitcoin last summer, or why didn’t we listen to the prophets of Tesla and followed the stock higher. There is nothing like opportunities missed to make a second lockdown and a bad winter worse.

But unlike the RobinHood generation, no one with any real experience of markets believes in double or triple baggers. We know markets are based on realities, sound analysis and preparation. We also know that markets are about information – and that opportunities, where one person spots something everyone else has missed, is extremely rare – unless the logic of markets has been undone.

Some other forces have been at work here.

As GameStop reached the top and tumbled, retail investors cried foul as RobinHood and other sites suddenly stopped them trading. RobinHood found it had to pay $3 billion in additional margin calls to the clearing houses. It had to raise new capital to cover its positions as the DTCC closed in on its operations. Retail investors found themselves trapped in illiquid positions.

The market remains what it always has been – seriously loaded against the unprepared retail investor. They are furious with RobinHood.

The lesson? There is no such thing as a free trading app.

The lesson? There is no such thing as a free trading app. Firms like RobinHood make their money selling their orders to large firms like Citadel Securities to execute their stock and option orders. Interestingly, Citadel was also the firm that bailed out the Melvin Capital hedge fund, after GameStop shorts nearly sunk it. Some estimates suggest that 27% of the US Stock market order flow now goes through Citadel, as well as 46% of retail volume. It made $1 billion in Q4 2020 from its execution platform.

What the madness of GameStop illustrates is the danger of gamifying stock investments and the way Wall Street works. Zero commission sites have made millions for their operators, but they exist to channel orders to firms like Citadel – which has made billions in effectively risk-free profits, by executing retail orders. It encouraged the retail boom by allowing RobinHood and others to offer commission-free trading apps to unprepared retail investors.

Who goes to jail? No one I expect...

Georg Ludviksson, CEO & co-founder of digital banking solutions provider Meniga, tells Finance Monthly why banks' most important innovation focus must be to help customers build 'financial fitness'.

People across the globe are experiencing new and uncertain circumstances for their personal finances, whether through unemployment, business closures or the sheer impact of the economic recession. One thing is certain, however: that healthy financial habits have a new pertinence in our society and for many, their first port of call to achieve this will be their bank. 

We have entered a critical point for the banking industry, where it is now absolutely crucial for banks to step up their innovation game to support their customers in a personalised and engaging manner through digital channels.

It is impossible to predict exactly what the financial ramifications of COVID-19 will be. However, we shouldn’t expect this pandemic to be a short-distance sprint but rather a marathon, and for this, banks need to be there for their customers to ensure that they are financially fit - or they will start training with somebody else.

Banks need to stay ahead of the curve by turning to digital channels and preserving the financial wellbeing of their customers

The personal finance landscape, specifically the way in which people make sense of their finances, has evolved tremendously over the past decade. In particular, there has been a shift in consumer behaviour whereby the demand for personalised services has increased dramatically, and people have become more critical of the banks that fail to help them lead healthier financial lives.

The personal finance landscape, specifically the way in which people make sense of their finances, has evolved tremendously over the past decade.

People no longer view banking as a purely transactional and one-dimensional functionality, but rather as a full-service experience helping them take control of their finances and achieve financial wellbeing. This shift in consumer behaviour and the increasing association of good financial habits with positive health and wellbeing also explains why the notion of ‘financial fitness’ has gained recognition within the personal finance landscape over the past few years as a term describing one’s increasing desire to feel good and confident about one’s financial situation.

The last few years have seen an increased prevalence of digital banking and a plethora of more personalised tools which suit the shifting needs and wants of consumers. The rate of digital banking adoption has also been significantly accelerated by the pandemic.

Research by deVere Group found that the use of fintech apps in Europe rose by 72% in March 2020, whilst a McKinsey study found that the pandemic has accelerated the shift to digital banking by two years. In particular, the latter study found that online bank use rose in most European countries, from a 7% increase in Italy to 19% in Portugal, and that more than 20% of customers in Spain and the UK tried online banking for the first time during lockdown.

As both digital banking and financial health have gained increasing significance in 2020, it highlights the urgent need for banks to view their digital channels as a strategic asset and start re-prioritising their resources to focus on developing personal finance management (PFM) services and the financial self-help tools their customers need. If not, they risk losing significant market share to the challenger banks, who already excel in user experience and have digital leadership in their DNA.

The last few years have seen an increased prevalence of digital banking and a plethora of more personalised tools which suit the shifting needs and wants of consumers.

Becoming your customer’s financial personal trainer and drawing upon the health and fitness world when developing PFM services

In a global financial crisis, a bank’s underlying mission statement should be focused around helping their customers lead healthy financial lives. By instilling financial fitness into the organisation’s mission, banks will be able to truly prioritise developing PFM services, and thus provide their customers with the support they need to take ownership of their financial health.

In fact, when developing PFM services, banks should consider studying what makes health and fitness apps so addictive. The popular fitness app Strava uses all kinds of features and gamification to keep users engaged and to encourage them to take control of their own health, from social activity feeds, to weekly targets and personalised nudges.

In a way, physical health is very similar to financial health, it’s about building the right habits to positively impact your fitness and wellbeing. Banks should analyse what makes fitness apps successful and replicate some of their gamified features and elements of their design to  develop user-friendly banking apps which can be comparable to personal finance coaches and which focus on helping customers achieve goals and build healthier habits.

Ultimately, the main functionalities of a digital banking app must on one hand be to ensure it delivers the right information to customers through features like spending reports and automated budgeting, and on the other, enable customers to build better habits and stay in control of their finances. The latter can be achieved through financial gamification like savings challenges, or other features including personalised nudges and notifications, social media-like activity feeds, cash-flow assistants and personalised cashback rewards.

One bank that has done particularly well to create personalised banking solutions for their customers is Portugal’s Crédito Agrícola. Like many other European banks, Crédito Agrícola has been facing rapidly growing competition from challenger banks like Revolut and N26, but by bringing their own digital innovations to market they have been successful in maintaining their position as one of one of Portugal’s most reputable banking groups.

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In September 2019, Crédito Agrícola collaborated with Meniga to launch one of Portugal’s most popular digital banking apps, “moey!”. The moey! app relies on Meniga’s technology as an engine for categorisation and enrichment, to provide customers with a more immersive and interactive experience. The app enabled Crédito Agrícola customers to, firstly, stay on top of their finances through a number of informative features, such as insights, reports, budgeting and financial planning; and secondly, be encouraged and motivated to build and maintain healthy financial habits through a feature that is, in many ways, the foundation of all fitness apps: the ‘Activity Feed’. The activity feed is a functionality that enables banks to engage with their customers through personalised messages such as insights, advice, fun facts, targeted rewards and product recommendations.

The results were almost instantaneous, with over 130,000 app installs in the first 6 months after launch. Crucially, the app enabled Crédito Agrícola to increase its user engagement, with 90% of transactions being made via the app and more than 50% of moey! customers now active users.

By drawing upon the health and fitness world and understanding what functionalities engage users and encourage them to take control of their own health, banks will be able to develop banking solutions which provide much-needed support during this pandemic and help them build good financial habits. 

The dependency of people on their banks has never been stronger, and banks now have a real opportunity to maintain the loyalty of their customers and stave off competition from the challengers. To succeed, they need to recognise the importance of shifting their value proposition and core product offering to focus on elements of digital banking, financial fitness and personal finance management.

Yaela Shamberg, Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer at InvestCloud, offers Finance Monthly her insight on how wealth managers can engage investors with digital solutions.

The Desire for Digital

As wealth managers face the pressure of the race to zero fees in an increasingly competitive marketplace, they are looking for ways to mitigate these threats while simultaneously preparing for the oncoming wealth transfer. Recent research from IQ-EQ has revealed that $15 trillion USD is to be passed to Millennials, Gen X and Y in the next decade – triggering a new era of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) who are digital natives that expect online wealth management portals with cutting edge tools.

Digital advice tools for HNWIs have been available for some time, but few have proved ideal for this client base. This is because wealth managers are asking the wrong questions. When it comes to finding suitable digital tools, they are looking for a one-size-fits-all digital solution, when in truth, they would never think to offer an impersonalised service to clients offline. What they need are solutions that enable the same level of personalisation and understanding to the individual that they would provide face-to-face – creating true digital empathy.

Introducing Personas

Those who have been successful in their digital transformation are achieving this by developing multiple ‘digital personas’ that provide their clients with individual experiences and functionalities which speak to their characteristics and goals. This improves the client-manager relationship, as the client feels they are receiving a more tailored service that allows them to interact with their wealth in the ways that they want to. The number of personas one offers may differ depending on how much a firm wants to invest in developing digital experiences, and the diversity of its clients. Nevertheless, the requirements of HNWIs can be roughly split into three personas, which must be catered to at a basic level.

Those who have been successful in their digital transformation are achieving this by developing multiple ‘digital personas’ that provide their clients with individual experiences and functionalities which speak to their characteristics and goals.

The Hands-On Investor

The hands-on investor requires a self-select persona. They know about the financial markets and want to be involved in the investing process. Some may even want to make all of their financial decisions independently. For this demographic, tools to browse, research and self-select their chosen investments are crucial – enabling them to build their own models and feel involved in their investment process.

But this does not rule out the wealth manager. They must curate investment options, enabling the investor to filter through them by topic, trend or through insight into what their communities are selecting. Communicating with this type of persona must respect their mindset and preferences, by being on their terms. Having a variety of channels available such as chat, video calling and voice memos, enables the investor to choose how and when to interact with their wealth manager.

The Life Planner

The life planner needs to be catered to with a goals-based planning persona. To them, investments are a means to a very specific end – and they need a holistic service that takes into account their entire financial wellbeing. This means managers must pay close attention to their clients’ investment goals and understand exactly what they want to achieve and why. This breaks down to understanding their goal funding, their risk tolerance and a number of other factors.

This begins with empathetic discovery – meaning digital workflows that clarify investment goals including questionnaires and capturing total assets and liabilities, income and expenses, projecting cashflows and applying stochastic models. Once onboarded, the wealth manager needs to be constantly communicating with the client so that they can keep track of their progress as they approach life goals. They also need digital tools that help them visualise their progress such as charts and trackers.

Once onboarded, the wealth manager needs to be constantly communicating with the client so that they can keep track of their progress as they approach life goals.

The Traditionalist

There are absolutely still those who fall into the client segment that tend to prefer a “white glove” service from prestigious wealth managers and therefore require a traditional persona. These clients are typically ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs) who require greater assistance from their wealth manager when choosing investments, and like these to be laid out in formal proposals.

These clients need a high level of customisation, which can be time-consuming. Digital advice builder tools come into play here as they enable automation, giving the wealth manager the ability to tailor portfolios to the client’s short and long-term goals and thematic interests quickly and efficiently. This frees up time that the wealth manager can now spend focusing on maximising profitability and tasks that add value. Then, these portfolios can be presented in the form of beautifully designed proposals which demonstrate greater empathy for the client’s preferences.

Making Digital Advice 'Stick'

Providing a wealth management service through the medium of tailored personas is a digital engagement strategy that enables greater digital empathy. But once the wealth manager has made this personalised service available, how can they make it ‘stick’ and keep clients coming back to their digital portals?

One way managers can keep clients coming back is by deploying gamification principles throughout the client experience – through which we can encourage greater and more active participation by implementing progression dynamics and establishing communities to help investors progress and learn. This is particularly useful for the self-selecting investor as it keeps the wealth management firm front and centre without being unnecessarily high-touch.

It can also be used to encourage positive behaviour from life planners, who can track their progress and be ‘rewarded’ when they enter useful information or complete certain actions within a desired timeframe. Establishing a community also enables them to gain insights into how their peers are progressing with their own investing goals. Keeping clients engaged in this way translates to longer-term loyalty, which in turn means greater profitability for the wealth management firm.

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For wealth management firms already using digital advice tools for other client segments, these can easily be expanded upon for HNWI demographics. Through a combination of personalised personas and behavioural science techniques to encourage loyalty and build trust, managers can service clients more effectively whilst taking advantage of automation that frees up time to take on new clients.

Digital Is Here

Regardless of investor types and personas, the future of digital offerings – for all – is here and with that comes a need to deploy digital empathy, tools and advice which enrich client lives. The use of thoughtful digital advice, seamlessly integrated into client portals and intuitive mobile apps, brings opportunities to uplevel client offerings, and match the premier services and tools they've come to expect from their wealth managers.

The world of banking, perhaps more than any other industry, has undergone significant change in recent years. As technology, strategies and partnerships progress, we’re beginning to see new avenues of growth such as gamification, which according to Karen Wheeler, Vice President and Country Manager UK at Affinion, may hold the key to enhanced customer engagement for the banking sector.

The digital revolution has transformed the way people interact with their banks, within-branch visits falling  as the rise of mobile banking has led to customers being able to manage their finances whenever, and wherever they are. And this trend is set to continue, with new figures from CACI revealing that mobile transactions are set to rise by around 121% between 2017-2022, and the average branch visits dropping from seven to four by 2022.

Traditional providers have also been faced with the uprising of challenger banks, which are striving to capture the attention of millennials with their agile, digital offerings. The territory of the high street stalwarts is being encroached on by the likes of PayPal and ApplePay which have disrupted the payments market, traditionally an area which banks dominated.

To stay relevant and encourage loyalty in an increasingly competitive industry, banks know they need find new ways to engage with their customer base. With today’s consumers never far from their smartphones, and moving fluidly between digital platforms, could gamification be the answer in the quest for greater engagement?

Gamification explained

Gamification originates from the computer games industry, and aims to engage with the principles of basic human psychology. In particular, it involves an understanding of what motivates people, how we want to be rewarded – and what will make us play again. Or, for banks: stay loyal.  At its core, gamification has a human centred design; optimised for feelings, motivation, insecurities and engagement.

Some of the aims of gamification include: driving a level of competition within users that results in increased usage and engagement; tapping into the human need for esteem and self-actualisation to increase the levels of motivation; playing on the human desire for power in an attempt to drive users to log back in and increase their status; and evoking similar reactions to those elicited by gaming by releasing chemicals which invoke feelings of excitement, euphoria and pleasure.

So, what does this mean in practice; how can gamification be used within the customer experience?

Bringing gamification to life

There are normally a number of different mechanics used in gamification which include points (normally the main method of currency in a gamified system, as they play on the human urge to collect resources), and rewards, when a user earns points which can be translated into a ‘currency’ for exchange of goods and services (whether real or virtual), and gives the user something to work towards.

Building on the idea that we are all naturally seeking power and status, badges are also used to symbolise accomplishments and play on the human desire to show competence, and leaderboards are used to recognise achievements and promote friendly competition between users.

In recent years, gamification has evolved from its traditional rewards-based platform, to one fuelled by sophisticated data-driven capabilities which allows businesses to offer personalised, user-centric experiences. This is no surprise when you consider the way we now live our lives; the proliferation of devices, apps and social media channels means our expectations of the digital customer experience are high.

How can banks use gamification in the customer experience?

Gamification is actually not a new concept in banking; it has always been part of their  set-up and is now growing, driven by customer behaviour and digital capabilities. Back in 2011, Gartner predicted by 2015, more than 50 percent of organisations that manage innovation processes will gamify those processes. With this date now far behind us, how accurate was this prediction?

Back in 2013, Spanish bank BBVA led the way with incorporating gamification into the experience it offered customers. The provider analysed how its customers interacted, and found that many felt more secure in going to the branch to complete their transactions. BBVA Game was launched to encourage customers to use its digital platform; with the ultimate aim to improve their customer retention and online customer experience.

The game allows people to make account enquiries, pay bills and carry out different kinds of transactions. Where the gamification element comes in to the mix is that, with each completed transaction, the users will earn points. There are also challenges and missions for users to undertake, with medals and badges being rewarded – which can then be shared to social media.

What can traditional banks learn from challengers?

BBVA has also invested in the development of Atom, the digital bank leading the charge for challengers. In a clear sign that Atom wants to its customers something different, it acquired software company Grasp, which specialises in games and virtual reality development, to build its digital platforms. Atom claims to “celebrate your individuality in every way”, by allowing its customers to choose a logo, name and colours to personalise the app experience.

By allowing customers to adapt the interface to suit their preferences, Atom is tapping into the psychology of taking control by allowing customers to make their banking experience truly unique. European bank OTP banka Hrvatska has also recently announced impressive results from its new gamification platform, with 16.1% more clients signed up for mobile banking services and the number of clients using prepaid Mastercard increasing by 12.8%.

The future of gamification

Banks have to work hard to keep customers loyal, so changing the perception of banking away from a boring necessity to something more engaging is essential if they want to maintain their relevance and value in people’s lives. Gamification should be seen as a route to engagement; a part of the customer journey, not something separate.

Gaming creates positive emotion, drives social relationships and fosters feelings of accomplishment, by combining banking with fun, personalised and reward-based games.. This shift away from ‘banking as a service’ to ‘banking as an experience’ gels with the gamification model, and is one we can expect to see financial providers – both new and old – capitalise on as the digital revolution marches on.

About Finance Monthly

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