Why I’ve Given Up Facebook Until After the Election, and What ‘Pokemon Go’ Reveals About Stopping Your Members From Quitting

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I’ve decided to give up on Facebook. I can’t look at it anymore. Does everything have to be a flaming argument about the election?

Even my closest friends have become lunatics about their chosen presidential candidate. I’ve long-since learned political discourse on Facebook is a total waste of time. But when I see an ignorant post, it just burns me up inside. I get angry, and I feel a powerful urge to explain to my friends how they’re wrong and I’m correct.

“Pokemon Go” is all the rage. I don’t believe I’ve ever heard the phrase “Gotta catch ’em all” so many times as I have lately. The other day, a friend was telling me how stupid it was to play “Pokemon Go.” She said the game was basically all about walking so you could get some badges. Ironically, as she was explaining how stupid it was to walk for virtual badges, I noticed she was wearing one of those Fitbit devices on her wrist.

I use the app Habit List to track my daily routines. For me, journaling, meditating, stretching, eating healthy, drinking a green smoothie, and working out are each daily goals. I click them off the list on the app and celebrate the number of times I’ve accomplished my goal. (As of the beginning of September, I have exercised every day for 106 straight days!)

But this practice isn’t limited to technology. When I was in college, I’d write a checklist of homework and projects I needed to complete within a weekend. If I completed something that wasn’t on the list, I’d add it to the list just so I could feel the satisfaction of immediately crossing it off.

And that’s the core of Facebook, “Pokemon Go” and our gamified world — giving ourselves that jolt of satisfaction.

The gaming analytics company Quantic Foundry has broken down gamer motivations and has found that strategic elements, including action, social, mastery, achievement, immersion, and creativity, are what make games addictive. All you need to know about this is that you haven’t got a chance against these guys.

Every day, teams of smart people at software companies — like bloggers and media broad-casters — are trying to figure out how to wire their technology so your brain can’t resist paying attention. In fact, they are trying to make their technology so addictive that you’ll set aside your family, career, and even your sex life to pay attention to their broadcast, app, or video.

Facebook wants you to be so addicted to discovering how many likes your photo got that you’ll open their app every chance you get. Then they arrange the content to encourage you to swipe, swipe, and swipe past their advertisers one more time. Even though you’ve already swiped past these posts, you keep swiping to get “rewarded” with something new. And, even though it’s pointless, you post your photos so you can get “rewarded” again with likes from your friends.

Broadcasters like Fox News and MSNBC study their teasers to see which combinations of words and messages keep the most viewers glued to their sets through the commercials.

Heck, I broke my Kindle and just received one in the mail. This one tells me, “With Kindle FreeTime, parents can set daily reading goals for kids, and reward them with achievement badges.” It’s everywhere now.

I’m going to help you focus on what’s important to you: growing your membership! Inspired by Pokemon’s motto, “Gotta catch ’em all,” our new motto will be “Gotta Keep ’em all.”

The object of the game is to  hold on to ALL of your members. You’ve already got members — you are spending marketing money to bring them in. You work hard to deliver great value. How do you stop your members from quitting?

The first step is to get your starting point. If you don’t have reports with your churn rate for each month over the last six months, along with your average member value, schedule a call with me so I can get the reports created for you at www.RobertSkrob.com/Assessment. Denise on my team will pull together reports for you, and we can create your “Gotta Keep’em All” game.

As part of it, we’ll create some metrics for new member engagement. One of the new member welcome kits I’m going to share with you is on my upcoming live cast, Tribal Membership — Empowering your members to discover themselves within your community (ww.TribalMembership.com), and it has gamified the new member on-boarding process. The best part is that this client can now track how many of their new members do the first three basic activities, and which individual members don’t. This way, they can give those members special encouragement to get started.

Let’s gamify your membership and make it as addictive to your members as Facebook. And, while you’ll get the satisfaction of playing “Gotta Keep ’em All” to improve your churn rate or “score,” the best part is that the real score — the number of members in your program and the amount of monthly membership revenue and dollars in your checking account — will increase as well. “Gotta Keep’em All.”

About Robert Skrob

The problem with subscription membership programs is that members quit, I fix that problem. For more than 20-years I have specialized in direct response marketing for member recruitment, retention and ascension in diverse subscription members environments including non-profit associations, for-profit publishers/coaching, subscriptions and SAAS companies. For an evaluation of your current churn rates and how I can improve it, contact me here. I often discover there are often two or three quick wins you can implement within a week to lower churn immediately, let’s talk about your quick wins.

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