Fun, Loyalty, Gamification

When considering gamification and fintech in the same space, many are hesitant of incorporating any gaming element where money is involved. However, there are opportunities here that may just be the key to revolutionizing the fintech space.

In the ever-growing landscape of fintech products and apps, many have great UX with a nice presentation. Fintech heavy-weight products, such as Square, Paypal, or Mint appear very polished and pleasing to the eye. However, the next layer of experience extends beyond just visuals or accomplishing the task at hand in an efficient manner. App design in general has become very streamlined and follows a consistent style. “Clean” and “flat” are buzzwords that every non-designer uses to describe design, and it shouldn’t just end here.

Not only can UX get the job done, it can even go a step further and make people smile. One large opportunity in fintech is ‘gamifying’ the experience for the user. Take Kiip as an example — a mobile ad network that offers random rewards as users progress through different stages of the system. These unexpected senses of achievement add new dimensions of emotion, celebration and gratification into the product experience. What if we randomly rewarded our customers with perks such as free money or no fees, by sharing their experience? Not only would they have a “feel good” moment, but for businesses, this is an opportunity to learn more about our customers in order to refine our offerings and solve their problems on a deeper level.

Venmo is a perfect example to prove that social network can coexist with fintech. As a matter of fact, Venmo’s dashboard is just a live steam of people paying each other money, broadcasted to their friends. Why would others care that you paid someone back for lunch? Well, it turns out they do care, and that’s why Venmo users sent over $1.6 billion in Q2 2015 in peer-to-peer payments. This is a 250% growth over the same period in 2014 and has become central to the efforts of PayPal (Venmo’s parent company) to dominate the Millennial market. There is a guilty pleasure associated with knowing how your friends spend their money, which Venmo is capitalizing on to add a fun and engaging layer to the dreadful world of payments.

It’s no secret that the gaming industry is booming. Stock prices of top gaming companies hit all-time highs near the end of 2015. The next person or company that can apply gamification successfully to the fintech space will be truly revolutionizing this industry. I can certainly see raised eyebrows when we put gamification and fintech beside each other, but the possibilities here are endless. You can start with a piggy bank donation concept.

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