Why your eCourse will die a horrible death without Gamification

Without engagement, you don’t have an eCourse. So why do so many people resist applying gamification to their courses?

The simple answer is: They don’t understand what gamification actually is and how to apply it.

People think gamification is badges and points, but those things actually have very little to do with gamification. Because let’s be honest, who is actually motivated by an empty icon badge that has no real value in the world? Not too many…

Another misconstrued idea is that gamification means your course has to be entertaining and fun. That is not at all true either. We have students applying gamification to their deeply healing eLearning journeys.

So what is gamification then? 

In eLearning, gamification is the act of taking your students from a consumer of  information, to a participant in their learning journey and transformation.

You see, the first mistake most eCourse creators make is in thinking that their job is to simply relay the information they know to their students and that if they tell their students what to do, then their job is done.

But what if the student gets bored and stops watching? Or what if they don’t take the action required to get the result? Well my friend, that’s when you lose the game and they lose the game because they don’t get the results and you won’t have them share those results with the world. 

Something all course creators need to wrap their mind around is that your actually an Experience Designer.

Your job is to facilitate a transformation. In order to do that successfully, you must put yourself in the student’s seat and craft an experience that will help them conquer their distractions and stay motivated all the way until they have completed each lesson.

This is extremely hard to do with just a series of talking head videos and PDFs.

We have a multitude of gamification elements in The Great eCourse Adventure. Take a look and learn:

  • rather than a sterol learning environment, our course is a world unto itself,
  • we deliver entertaining lessons and a story arc where our students are characters in the bigger adventure,
  • we’ve crafted exciting auto-responders that keep our students in the story and make them want to get to the next lesson to see what happens,
  • we reward our students with our community currency (the Bajillion) for taking action and contributing in the community, then they can spend their hard-earned bajillion on real products, software and services in our mountain shop,
  • we have a Bajillionaire leaderboard that shows the top bajillionaires in the community to inspire a little healthy competition,
  • we give clear calls to action in each and every lesson that must be completed before they can move forward on the journey,
  • there are special challenges that students complete in order to learn new skills, stretch their comfort zone and gain helpful ‘backpack supplies’ for the journey up the mountain,
  • we encourage a ton of sharing in our community campfire (forum), which keeps people connected, inspired and engaged in the learning process by giving them a voice,
  • we have our students partner up with an ‘adventure buddy’ to help hold them accountable and they are required to do regular check-ins with that buddy via skype,
  • we do weekly coaching campfires (webinars) where we bring multiple students on camera with us and help them hash out their ideas and get their questions answered,

You might be thinking to yourself, “I don’t have time to think about all those things. I just want to make a course!”

To that we say, if you want to create a course that transforms lives and is successful, then you NEED to be thinking about how you can gamify your student learning experience to increase engagement.

In other words, you have to make your course enjoyable to go through.

Power points and PDFs will probably not be enough to help people get results you want for them. The numbers don’t lie. The student dropout rate for online courses is somewhere between 70-97%… and that’s because most courses are boring as hell.

You need to open your creative mind and come up with challenges that inspire action.

Brainstorm ways to reward your students when they do take that action.

Predict what distractions or resistance will come up for your students, which would otherwise derail their progress and create solutions that will prevent that from happening.

As an eCourse creator, you MUST treat this as an art-form, NOT just a business opportunity. 

Because this is art. You are using all forms of media to guide a transformation. What could be more artful than that? 

Let go of the six figure blueprints that are promised in the online marketing industry. Don’t listen to the gurus who say create a half-assed course and slap a big price tag on it.

The time has come for a new kind of media experience to be born. One that merges all of our favourite forms of media: art, entertainment, games, music, competition and education.

Because you are reading this, you must be one of the pioneers to bring this new media to the world…

Your next step is to see how you can turn your course into a world. Go watch our Masterclass. It will open you up to all sorts of new ideas and ways to approach building your online courses. It’s also really fun!

Questions? Comments? Share from your heart below.

Leave a Comment: