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Gamifying Marketing Education
By: Dwayne W. Waite Jr.
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After spending almost an entire semester teaching a marketing course to high school students, there are certain noticeable trends.

First, the younger generation, either the tail-end of the Millennials or the generation immediately after, are no fans of Facebook. In fact, more than a plurality have no Facebook profiles. 

Second, the attention spans are shorter than those of agency creatives. Yes, we too were surprised.

Third, the saturation of digital tools in their daily lives is truly remarkable. If there weren't policies about technology in the classroom, many of them wouldn't look up. They would be glued to their devices.

Which brings us to the point of the post: the latest, hottest game out there for iPhone users (alas, we looked on the Android market to no success) is called QuizUp. People on this game can go up against friends and test their knowledge for points.

And the kids dig it. They like it so much, in fact, they play it during class.

Yes: in a place of learning they divert their attention to a game where they test their knowledge against their peers. The irony is impressive.

Why hasn't the advertising community, a place that has been clamoring about the rise of gamification, jumped on this? This can be another training ground for future account planners, creatives, and strategists. Learning through games and contests has proven to be both attention grabbing and beneficial. Why not build something for marketing education?

"AdQuiz, a Publicis-Omnicom production."  Come on. It is clear they have the capital and resources. Just a suggestion.

We are entering a time where we must use the resources available to keep attention, attract talent, and develop a future workforce. Gamification is one of those resources our marketing community can capitalize on.

We're an exciting and interesting industry — let's use that to our advantage.

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About the Author
Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.
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