Evolution of our Business Cards – Tangible Gamification


Most of the time when I discuss gamification to new people interested in the industry, the easiest and most common examples of gamification can be seen in a non-tangible setting. Gamified CRMs, dashboards or simply points, badges and leaderboards can be easy to describe and imagine. Indeed, gamification add-ons are perhaps the most widely used form of gamification out there. Yet, there tends to be an assumption that this is the only setting that gamification can work in. This simply isn’t the case, so here I will show you a simple and tangible method of gamifying.

Business cards are something that businesspeople use daily, with around 10 billion cards printed a year in the US alone. Business cards are primarily used to exchange information, although with the age of the internet, they are becoming less fashionable. This is perhaps reflected in the statistic that over 90% of business cards get thrown out in the first week. That brings the 10 billion figure down to one billion useful business cards per year. That is still a large number of business cards, about 4 per person per year for the US, but that figure can be improved if the way we look at business cards change.

Enter, gamification. You can see below how we designed our business cards to be more engaging and fun here at Gamification+.

One of our business cards uses a tick list, a simple but effective way to gamify a tangible object. This tick list installs a sense of progression for the receiver. As they receive the business card, they already see the top objective ticked off the list. This helps the receiver feel like they have already achieved something, and may spur them on to achieve the next objective.

How does this link to player types?

This works well for the player and achiever player types as it helps them reach the end goal. The tick list motivates socialisers as all the objectives on the business card are sociable objectives. In the latest business card, we added an empty space at the bottom which caters for disrupter player types, as they can ‘leave their mark’ on the card. Finally, the “refer a friend” section of the business card satisfies the philanthropist player type. Designing a business card this way is far more engaging for the receiver and will help them keep it longer, and perhaps even show others.

This is the same for the other design of our business card, which can be seen below .

This card is designed like a snakes and ladders board. The idea is to get people to feel like they are progressing, and as such it features the most the same benefits as stated above. Regardless, these are just two designs of many that can be used to improve the functionality of a business card. This is just a simple way of redesigning something to make your business more memorable.

How do you like our business cards? Can you think of a cool design to be used? Comment below.

About the author 

Pete Baikins

Pete Baikins is an international authority on gamification, a lifelong gamer, successful entrepreneur and a lecturer. As CEO of Gamification+ Ltd he mentors and trains companies world-wide on the use of gamification to solve business challenges. Gamification+ won the Board of Trade Award from the UK's Department of International Trade in January 2019.

Pete is co-host of the health gamification podcast Health Points and is also Chair of Gamification Europe, the annual conference for Gamification practitioners.

Pete is an Honorary Ambassador for GamFed (International Gamification Confederation), having previously been the Chair from 2014 to February 2019, whose aim is to spread best practices within and support the gamification industry.

After 15 years as a Lecturer on gamification and entrepreneurship at the University of Brighton he now guest lectures on Gamification at King’s College London and at ESCP Europe at post-graduate and under-graduate levels.

Over the past 20 years Pete has built and sold two businesses. One was in security software and the more recent one was a telecoms and internet connectivity business. He is also an Ambassador for Brighton & Hove Chamber of Commerce in the UK.

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