In its conversations with wealth firms, InvestCloud often delves into gamification through the use of different principles and trademarked frameworks that it owns. One framework, called CHAPOSS, applies game theory in digital engagement to help bring people back to look at their information, and understand the process to consume information. Another framework, CHAAPIF, focuses on decision theory to provide people with the right framework to make decisions that are right for themselves, without making the mistake of putting too much weight on the result.
“When we talk about decision theory, there’s a lot of science behind it,” Shamberg says. “For example, we know that men are generally overconfident in making financial decisions, and women are underconfident. There’s also herding mentality, where some people may rush to do something if they think others are doing it too. We also consider the possibility of information overload, where the user gets so much information thrown at them that they end up paralyzed.”
Another facet of gamification that InvestCloud considers is the use of status accumulation. For certain clients, the ability to earn points based on the number of interactions with their advisor, the amount of dialogue they have, or how often they attend educational events could incentivize ideal behaviours. For others, the recognition could be attached to interacting with educational material and completing certain tasks that go beyond celebrating trades in their investment account, which is a feature that the U.S.-based brokerage platform Robinhood was accused of misusing in the months following the GameStop saga last year.
“We also have a foundational focus on principles of good design for our user interfaces,” Shamberg adds. “Traditionally, we might think of design purely in terms of aesthetics, like fonts or colours. But when we look at it, we think about how it works, and whether its different elements work together to support its intended function.”
While many applications of gamification today may come off as too simple to be effective, Shamberg emphasizes that it can improve outcomes dramatically if leveraged in the right way. Among other considerations, she says firms looking to incorporate it as a strategic objective should look at it through the lens of serving clients, making things intuitive, and creating experiences that are meaningful to clients while giving them just the right amount of choice and freedom.