Open badges can be shared and showcased all over the web. Customers who engage with your online training resources get rewarded for their achievements. Which prompts them to not only keep coming back for more but to spread the word about your customer-centric brand. They’re also able to store the badge safely in their virtual backpacks to take with them wherever they go. Serving as a constant reminder of the amazing experience they had during their online customer training. But how do you even begin to incorporate open badges into your strategy so that consumers can start earning and building brand loyalty?
7 Tips To Add Badges To Your Customer Training Program
1. Decide On Desired Buying Behaviors And Objectives
The primary purpose of open badges in online customer training is to reinforce or encourage certain behaviors and objectives. For example, to prompt customers to learn more about your newest product line to build buyer confidence. So, the first step is to decide which behaviors your badges must support and how. An example is creating a badge for your online certification course so that customers earn a reward for mastering product maintenance. Thereby, increasing brand loyalty and customer satisfaction, since they can now extend the life of the product.
2. Dress To Impress
Badges need to look good in order to build excitement. Sure, customers are focused on what it takes to earn the badge and the meaning behind it. But aesthetics are still important. Design eye-catching badges that align with the objectives and customer interests. Use colors that pop off the page and creative fonts. You may even want to download reusable templates to avoid starting from scratch. Above all else, make certain that the badges reflect your brand image and messaging.
3. Encourage Social Media Sharing
One of the perks of open badges is that they are shareable online. Customers can show off their achievements and you get to promote your organization to a new audience. Namely, their social network of friends, family, and co-workers. All of whom have the potential to become new customers who participate in your online customer training course. Thus, the cycle goes on and on. Encourage consumers to share the badge on social media every time they earn a new reward. The post will automatically display the badge and a congratulatory message explaining what the badge represents. Customers can also add their own comments to the badge announcement to personalize it on their wall.
4. Give Them A Place To Show Off Their Collection
Aside from social media, customers need a place to store and show off their badge-based reward collection. This is another area where aesthetics are crucial. So, you should provide them with a thematic display case or backpack. Or a centralized location where they can proudly display their accomplishments and keep track of which resources/courses they’ve completed. You can even allow them to personalize the storage spot by choosing their own color scheme or layout. A sense of ownership prompts them to work hard to earn the next badge and expand their collection. As well as make virtual badges more tangible and real. They aren’t just floating out in the ether, but neatly compiled in an easily accessible location.
5. Set Different Badge Levels
You could stick with the traditional badge-based reward approach, where customers unlock a set badge when they meet the requirements. Or you could make it even more dynamic by creating distinct achievement levels. For example, a badge can involve three tiers that involve different levels of mastery. Customers aim for the ‘gold’ product expert badge so that they can post on their page, much to the envy of their ‘bronze’ badge peers. Make customers aware of the level system and how they can unlock the next tier to avoid confusion.
6. Pair Rewards With Interactive Training Resources
It’s not enough to simply add a badge to dry or dull online customer training resources and expect it to boost participation. Every reward must be paired with engaging and interactive resources that tie into real-world benefits. Such as simulations, tutorials, demos, and serious games that improve product knowledge and breed brand loyalty. Training badges give them the extra motivation they need, but it’s the activities that get them hooked. They look forward to the next serious game that allows them to meet interesting characters or challenge themselves. The badge is just the icing on the cake.
7. Give Them Some Privacy
Most open badge systems that are already established give users the option to make their rewards private. They don’t necessarily have to share them on the site or social media. Instead, they can use badges to remind themselves of their achievements and monitor their progress. This is ideal for introverts, who don’t relish the idea of putting their accomplishments on full display. This may limit your social media marketing efforts. However, customers are more likely to share if they aren’t being forced into it. Plus, you don’t have to worry about violating their personal rights or data protection regulations. When they earn a badge, invite them to share it and give them the opportunity to choose which platforms they’d like to post it on. Since they may have different accounts for personal/professional use.
Open badges get customers actively engaged in online promotion. They may even become brand advocates who share badges on social media to bring new consumers into the fold. The key is not forcing them into gamification. Give them the opportunity to explore resources on their own and make badge-based rewards an optional incentive. You should also provide private backpacks where they can store their badges in case they don’t want to showcase them online.