What an addictive game can teach us about marketing
By: Ryan Burgio
September 16, 2013 | Reading Time: 2 mins
It’s been downloaded over 500 million times with over a billion games played. It”s sleek and beautifully designed. It”s called and it”s a super addictive game, yet it is also surprisingly simple.
I must admit, there was a 3-hour period after I downloaded the app where I was fully hooked. The game is designed to be intuitive since the app doesn’t even have a help menu or any rules on how to play. Part of the appeal was learning the rules on my own.
So what can this app teach us about marketing and design? Here”s a few things we can take away from this cool app.
Simplicity is King
In an ever-complicated world full of distractions and complexity, a simply designed, easy-to-learn game is a welcome break. People are busy, they don”t want to spend hours trying to learn something new. This game was so easy to learn, yet still challenging.
Marketing can suffer from too much complexity. We can fall into the trap of assuming consumers have time to digest complicated messaging. Simplicity rules the day in an increasingly complex world.
Don’t Go Overboard with Social
We love social media, but we find it can be overkill if we ask consumers to share and connect every chance we get. Dots keeps it simple, only asking you to share your score with friends. Nothing more, nothing less.
Don’t Work Too Hard at Selling
Unlike other apps, Dots isn’t taking every single moment to upsell. They play it cool, give you a great user experience with the understanding that if you love the product, you”ll probably pay for extra tools and features. The About section is not even about them, it”s about having fun and connecting – there”s a cool Music Box feature, some inspiring quotes, and a way to connect. When we push too hard, consumers get turned off. The Dots app plays it cool and it seems to be working.
Want to try it out? (Oh yeah, and it’s free!)