Userlevel 5
Badge +1

Gang, I have an idea that I have no idea how to execute. Can you help?

I always find gamification to be a little bit lacklustre. Points are, ultimately, meaningless and badges are a nice point of pride but, again, they don’t do anything. I’ve even had feedback from members to say that they’re more annoying than useful.


What if there was a third system informed by the points and badges system, designed to encourage intense progression across the community user journey and reward very specific behaviours?


Power-ups work like this:

  • A Community member does something amazing. As they do. They submit an incredible guide, write some thought-leadership or set up a networking discussion.
  • Once that post reaches a certain number of likes or replies, they earn a power-up!
  • The power-up gives them a one-shot dose of something amazing and useful. It might be a ticket to an industry event, a month of an upgraded product tier or even a 30 minute call with a thought-leader in your space.
  • They can activate it for themselves or, importantly, they can gift it to another member or a colleague to give them a boost that month

Now I really want to prototype this, but I’m stumped as to how to do it. The challenges are:

  • Automatically detecting the criteria that reward the power-up (likes/comments on a specific post)
  • Awarding the power-up (the user needs to know they’ve earned it as soon as they’ve earned it)
  • Redemption or gifting (each power up is a one-shot. They also need to be able to send it to someone else)
  • Visually displaying that the user earned a powerup for their submission (social proof)

What systems/processes could I make use of to try this out on a small scale?

3 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

Three main reactions: 

  1. I like the the idea and want to learn from it if you find a way to do it. 
  2. Zapier is likely to be your friend for prototyping and automating a lot of this. It’s helped me extend gamification beyond what can be done out-of-the-box, as well as automate a number of other key moderation tasks (helpful as a team of one). 
    1. Example: I use zapier to award points for any other behaviors I want to incentivize (ex. speaking on events, marking an answer).
    2. My solutions have a manual trigger (add a row to a google sheet), but you could also setup an insided based trigger, filter it based on the criteria, then setup a series of actions to award points and your Power Up. 
    3. It’s likely a more complex version of Bas’s answer to me here: 


  3. From what it sounds like, your Power Up Reward is something that sits off-Insided… so find whatever distribution system (email service, swag provider, event coupon code, etc) that works for that. Then setup a trigger for zapier to automate that, if you can. (Zapier has a ton of automations, so i’m optimistic you can find a solution)

Related takeaway: I’ve been thinking lately that basic RPA with services like Zapier is one of the top skills for Community Managers to develop. It’s unlocked so much for me in the past few months that allows me to scale (and survive) as I still work on the business case to grow my team. And then when the team grows, I can focus their time on higher value tasks because the automation is handling the remedial tasks. Waiting around for Insided or any vendor to have solutions for automating processes unique to your use case is likely to delay or impede progress. TL;DR dig into Zapier or a related tool if you haven’t! 


Please share back if you figure something out. 

Userlevel 5
Badge +1

Love that, thanks @ddpancratz!

I actually use Zapier to automate my onboarding process far beyond what InSided is capable of. Essentially adding all new members to a sheet, then triggering a series of emails with delays. I never thought about using it as part of this system though, so thanks for the reminder!

I think what I’ll probably end up with as a prototype is a basic, single use voucher code system. If it’s a unique code, a member can PM it to another member or share over email. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

Ooooo onboarding is a great use case for Zapier. I may ask to pick your brain on that in a few weeks.