Gamification In Banking And Fintech: 5 Learnings From iGaming

Meaghan Johnson Contributor
I’m a fintech advisor obsessed with customer-centric products
Uri Poliavich
Uri Poliavich and Meaghan Johnson discuss the future of motivational engineering and learnings from iGaming at the Forbes Cyprus Future of Fintech Summit 2023

Gamification has long been an area of interest for banks and fintech as a method to improve customer experience and increase engagement. Banks and fintechs that have made a gamification part of their UX and product offering, such as Bunq Ikano and Monobank, typically use lotteries, prize draws, and trophies to increase engagement with the app or with the card and payment features. On the other hand, fintechs and banks focusing on retail investment opt for leaderboards as their primary gamification tactic. Despite these examples, integrating gamification as part of the UX and product offering is still a novelty in fintech and banking. In the future, gamification must go beyond engagement to maintain competitiveness in an increasingly competitive digital space.

Learnings from iGaming

Without a clear blueprint for gamification, banks and fintechs can and should look to adjacent industries for inspiration. At the recent Forbes Cyprus Future of Fintech Summit in Limassol, Cyprus, Uri Poliavich, CEO of Soft2Bet, shed light on what the financial sector can learn from the iGaming industry’s use of gamification.

Poliavich highlighted the effectiveness of motivational engineering, a strategy that has yielded significant success in engaging users in gaming and holds promise for fintech. Polavich believes now is the time for traditional banks to adopt a gamification strategy to stay relevant, and highlighted, “Now fintech is about neo-banking, customization, and adapting to new technologies that are replacing retail branches. A generation of users prefers to gamify the experience, and this is where iGaming; specifically Soft2Bet, is at the junction of different niches.”

During the event, Poliavich highlighted five critical learnings for fintech and banking:

  1. iGaming platforms are adept at using gamification techniques to keep users engaged and invested. Incorporating challenges, progress tracking, and rewards for fintech and banking activities can significantly enhance user engagement. This approach makes financial management more interactive and adds fun, transforming mundane tasks like saving or budgeting into more appealing activities.
  2. iGaming excels at capturing user screen time through integrating features of gamification, localization, and customization to create a more dynamic and engaging experience for users. Fintech apps can adopt similar strategies to become a frequent destination for users. This might involve offering financial news, interactive budgeting tools, or educational content that’s informative and engaging, encouraging users to spend more time within the app.
  3. The variety of features in iGaming, such as achievements, rewards, and interactive elements, is a critical factor in its success. Fintech could incorporate similar features to make financial management more dynamic. For instance, introducing badges for reaching savings goals or interactive scenarios for financial planning could add an engaging layer to the user experience.
  4. Using AI in iGaming for personalized content and optimizing user experiences can be a valuable lesson for FinTech. By leveraging AI, fintech apps can offer personalized financial advice, anticipate user needs based on spending habits, and suggest relevant financial products. This level of customization can lead to a more intuitive and supportive user journey.
  5. iGaming platforms are skilled at adapting to user preferences and behaviors, a strategy that can significantly benefit FinTech. By analyzing user data, fintech apps can tailor their services to match individual preferences, whether it’s in investment options, spending categories, or saving methods. This level of responsiveness can significantly enhance the overall user experience and satisfaction.

Think like Netflix NFLX -2.2%, Not Like a Bank

In 2024, consumer choice for banks and fintech is at its highest, and with the rise of embedded finance, customer choice will undoubtedly increase. Since the onset of the neobank and fintech revolution in the early 2010s, nearly all consumer banking products and services have been digitized. Consumers have gradually shifted to multi-banking or fintech relationships. These trends and significant changes in financial services mean the stakes are higher than ever for retention and revenues. A smart gamification strategy can set one brand apart from the next. Banks and fintechs need to start thinking about engagement through the lens of Netflix rather than a traditional bank.

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