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For orders of new homes, and what they will contribute to home builders' productivity tally in 2016, March is the month.

Homes on the sales books in March or earlier stand a greater chance of getting started, completed, and delivered in a profitable work stream through the summer and early fall vs. inventory turns that funnel in later in the year and get rushed to completion by yearend. Where profitability, and even viability, may hinge executional excellence, measurably improved workflows, better-managed process, higher productivity among trade crews, etc., March sales figures can make or break a year.

The "back half" of March weekends start now. Doing things "the way we've always done them," especially when it comes to your ability to precisely target your sales and marketing efforts to a home searcher with the greatest likelihood to be your customer, is a death knell, like it or not.

Here you have it. Spring comes in, a full-fledged season, this weekend. It's the earliest arrival of Spring's Vernal Equinox in 110 years, and not because of climate change.

For some, the weekend launches Spring Break. For others, it marks the bright line of a make-or-break moment, a decisive instant for "grand opening" new communities, driving people to your model homes, upping the ante on promoting traffic, and getting those orders humming.

A tactic you may or may not have considered as a momentum and motivational driver among your sales and marketing associates is to gamify the initiative. Want to make change, especially challenging change, fun? Gamify it.

Gamification means using motivational techniques like those the videogame industry has put to such effective use. Anyone with teenagers in the house knows that they will spend long hours on their own, trying to get to the next level of their favorite game. Motivation experts like Dan Pink would say that the games are tapping into some basic human drives: for autonomy (you control your own pace), for mastery (you get better over time), and for a sense of purpose (you’re aiming at a well-defined goal). The social factor is important, too. Gamers love to match their skills against others and to compare notes on how they’re doing.

Can these motivational concepts and techniques encourage decision makers to use new analytical tools and collaborate with each other — both to improve the tools and to better their ability to make more informed decisions?

Enough said.