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We wanted to test whether gamifying giving might engage young men in giving for Red Nose Day 2013, by creating ‘Britain’s Biggest Fart App’, a smartphone based game which enables you to make a friend’s phone fart (whilst making an SMS donation to Comic Relief).

Downloaded 100,000 times for Red Nose Day, 60% of game players were under 30 and 53% of them men and almost half were first time fundraisers.

You might also be interested in gamifying giving, how to get 100,000 downloads – part 1, or the science of farts.

How do you get 100,000 downloads?

We think it starts with designing it into your app.

It’s about understanding your audience (you do have a target audience in mind and you know how and where to find them right?).

Go where your audience lives

Think about who you are targeting.

What interests them, how do they use technology, what’s the pattern of their daily life, what relationships do they have between their peers and what do they usually think of charity?

We knew from early research the young men (under 35) that we were targeting were pretty resistant to traditional charity messages but liked gameplay, were addicted to their mobiles and were very social.

We tested that with these quick concept ads on facebook (the second one got three times the click through with men 25-35 than the first).

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One click to download

If our marketing objective wasn’t clicks but to get users to download the app – we had to be in the medium they used (mobile) where they could initiate a download in one click.

More tightly targeted mobile advertising delivered a click through of between 0.41% to 1.25% vs traditional web advertising click through of 0.10% – 0.15%.

Mobile advertising delivered better audience targeting and a better ‘one click’ to download user experience.

Make your ads creative and as much fun as the app

Mobile ad space is pretty small, so we worked with the team at M&C Saatchi Mobile to push creative boundaries – using a mixture of animated mobile ads like this:

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…. and fully interactive mobiles ads which expand to occupy full screen and allowed players to take a quiz to see what kind of fart they were – so they could experience all the fun of the game before they downloaded. We believe the combination of this creative approach and better targeting on mobile explains the higher click through rates described above.

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Paid media ‘cut through’ and got us noticed

In a world of a million apps it’s hard to cut through.

We decided to concentrate our paid advertising into two short sharp bursts, using ‘app of the day’ service App Gratis and later Surikate alongside other mobile advertising to cut through, drive up rankings in the app store and get noticed.

Thank-you to Mojiva, Greystripe, InMobi, Surikate, App Gratis, M&S Saatchi, IPC and Haymarket Media who all donated media space for this experiment.

The table below shows the Fart apps daily ranking in the app store.

It shows the success of this strategy. It also shows how quickly every new app fades from the top of the table. From No 1 to the entertainment category to 178th in 7 days. The app store really is that harsh.

It’s another reason to test and test with consumers before you set out to create your ad driven spike of consumer interest.

Date

Overall

Entertainment

16-Feb-13

856

17-Feb-13

550

18-Feb-13

425

19-Feb-13

14

1

20-Feb-13

14

1

21-Feb-13

16

1

22-Feb-13

21

2

23-Feb-13

29

3

24-Feb-13

34

4

25-Feb-13

52

5

26-Feb-13

91

16

27-Feb-13

241

33

28-Feb-13

571

65

01-Mar-13

1106

131

02-Mar-13

1498

172

03-Mar-13

176

04-Mar-13

178

05-Mar-13

178

06-Mar-13

162

07-Mar-13

1447

163

08-Mar-13

1303

143

09-Mar-13

1474

169

10-Mar-13

169

11-Mar-13

176

12-Mar-13

174

13-Mar-13

1250

137

14-Mar-13

14

2

15-Mar-13

20

2

Social media, sharing and word of mouth delivered 80% of downloads

Our paid media delivered a fifth of the total downloads.

Together App Gratis and Surikate drove 14,000 downloads and created an immediate impact. Direct click throughs from other mobile advertising drove another 4-5,000.

In terms of cost we focused on a CPD (cost per download) rather than clicks. The majority of downloads were delivered for a CPD of between £1.61 and £3.49.

This got the ball rolling and social media, in app recommendation and word of mouth built momentum and generated the remaining four fifths of downloads. Comic Relief’s large following on Twitter and Facebook with many people of the key demographic will have undoubtedly helped.

And that’s how we got 100,000 downloads.

TheGivingLab offers innovation consulting, consumer research and digital design to help charities change and grow. Contact us: change@thegivinglab.org

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We wanted to test whether gamifying giving might engage young men in giving for Red Nose Day 2013, by creating ‘Britain’s Biggest Fart App’, a smartphone based game which enables you to make a friend’s phone fart (whilst making an SMS donation to Comic Relief).

Downloaded 100,000 times for Red Nose Day, 60% of game players were under 30 and 53% of them men and almost half were first time fundraisers.

You might also be interested in gamifying giving or the science of farts.

How do you get 100,000 downloads?

Design it in. Great marketing is designed into a great app.

There are 4 challenges – people finding your app, getting them to download and initiate the app, getting them to come back and play or engage more than once in your app and finally to share the app with friends.

So let’s take that in reverse:

Design into your app reasons to share

With Red Nose Day we only had a few weeks to make an impact and get engagement but games take months to build audiences. We had days.

Firstly the game was built around making a friend’s phone fart – a peer to peer idea from the start.

Secondly we designed in a requirement when you initiated the app that you had to share with your facebook friends that you are playing the game. Telling users what to do always carries a risk of backlash and some were grumpy about this feature, but it meant the first 1000 downloads got shared with 20,000+ facebookers.

 

Make your app sticky – give me reasons to come back and play again

The game was designed to celebrate farting achievement, with special edition farts and local and national rankings and fun reasons for you to engage and come back to play more or check progress. For more on gamification click here.

We made it fun and pretty gross.

This generated considerable word of mouth, the most valuable kind of marketing.

Take a look at your app, what are the great features your users are excited about (you did test regularly with users at every stage of development right?).

The pressures of a deadline for Red Nose Day and delays in Apple approval seriously ate into our test time, so we didn’t discover until after launch that it was vital for game players to know who had sent them farts, which we corrected within days of launch, but crunching user testing meant we missed a vital trick.

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Get the first user journey right: You only have one chance to make a good first impression.

If your app doesn’t download and start up smoothly first time it’s game over for that customer. In a world of 200+ mobile phone standards it’s essential to make sure your app downloads and opens up smoothly and is intuitive and easy to use.

Testing this super essential first journey is key.

Our desire to link the app to users’ facebook feed meant users had to give a double permission. Firstly to access facebook on their phone and then secondly to link it to the app, effectively they had to go through the same permissions screen twice. This horrible piece of mandatory UX (user experience) confused and annoyed over 35,000 people. We lost them. They got stuck in facebook permissions hell and gave up.

If we’d known we were going to lose one third of our audience 10 seconds in maybe we might have thought differently about the game design.

Finding your app – 50% of your project budget should be marketing.

In a world of over 1 million apps in the Apple App Store (400,000+ which have never downloaded once) the competition for users attention is fierce.

Whatever you are spending on an app you should be spending again on marketing. To find out what you should be spending it on click here.

TheGivingLab offers innovation consulting, consumer research and digital design to help charities change and grow. Contact us: change@thegivinglab.org

During the process of developing Britain’s Biggest Fart App for Red Nose Day we have uncovered much about the delights of farting (and some clues on how gamification might be used to connect charities  to new audiences).

Therefore we’d like to share our top 5 learnings in hope of inspiring others to follow in these pioneering farty footsteps.

HOW DO YOU LIKE YOURS?

Do all farts make you laugh? After surveying the first 100 we can categorically say no.

We suspect there is a primal human instinct tuned to know when a satisfying flirty fart flips into an extended sign of serious ill health and you should be reaching for 999.

We found ‘wetter’ is better but too long was wrong.

HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH

Very long farts just hang around like, well … a bad smell and in group situations (and our research meetings) long farts lead to serious embarrassment and awkwardness.  Over 30 seconds and people were sitting there with Queen Victoria’s ‘we are not amused’ face on and the clock went backwards.

Unless you have a serious gross-out addiction, 15 seconds is the maximum length of fart any civilised human being could stand (and that’s sound only, no smell included). Our scientists recommend a perfectly formed fart of 2-6 seconds for maximum comic pleasure.

Boy those meetings were fun.

MUSICAL METHANE

If you have fond memories of Mr Methane on Britain’s Got Talent you might be shocked to know it’s harder than it looks to make musical methane intelligible to the human ear.

We tested wet sounds, dry sounds, fast tunes, slow tunes, pop farts, classical symphonic farts (over 100 in all) to discover ‘deep and wet’ is definitely easier on the ear.

The pleasure in musical farts comes from recognition. Don’t recognise the tune? Then it’s game over. So our ideal trumper tune comes with a light backing track and instantly recognisable, old reliable tunes like this royal ripper.

BUFFALO IN A LIFT  

Buffalo. Remember all that Derren Brown power of suggestion stuff. Buffalo. Did I mention a farting buffalo? Human brains are brilliant at connecting words and images. Try not imagining what a buffalo looks like right now. It gets in your head.

Anonymous farts are dull, they confuse the brain, we don’t know how to react if we don’t know where or who they are coming from. Farts need a name or a person or animal to bring them alive. I give you Nana at Christmas.

FART WORDS

So if farts need names, how do you name your guff?

People, animals and unexpected pairings all are good places to start, but they all have to work with the fart sound you’ve captured.

We were delighted to find this gem …

We’re just sad Shakespeare’s fart and Fart in Space didn’t make the final cut.

That would have made it classy and international.

We help innovative people and charities create and test new fundraising ideas, or products and services that generate income for good causes. If you’d like the lab’s help to get a great idea off the ground email us: change@thegivinglab.org