Gamification helps teach Croatian youth about the risks of gambling

By Native Advertising Institute on March 30, 2023
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We're highlighting the winners of the Native Advertising AWARDS 2022. This post features The Best Use of Online Media.

  • Campaign: Let the Dice Roll Remain Fun
  • Publisher/Agency: 24sata
  • Brand: Croatian Lottery

Croatia is a small country where gambling, betting and lottery games are legal activities for adults. Nine percent of Croats have a problem with gambling and betting, and the problem is particularly prevalent amongst the young.

While devastating statistics show that 13% of Croatian high school students have harmful psychosocial consequences related to gambling, there’s little awareness of the problem, let alone action to confront it.

Croatian Lottery sought to reverse this by informing the population on how to recognize addictive behaviour and seek help. To do this, it needed a powerful online campaign. 

24sata’s creative campaign started with a survey to gauge the pulse of the nation in relation to gambling habits. It then designed a microsite called ‘Let the dice roll remain fun’ to display the survey results and present real-life stories of gambling addicts, advice on how to play responsibly, a gambling addiction assessment quiz, warning signs for risky behaviours and other practical and useful information.

But 24sata was also aware that keeping the target’s interest would not be easy. How could it keep users on the microsite long enough to get as much information as possible? 

For this, it found a hidden ace: content gamification. It used different gaming techniques to motivate participation and engagement. The content, such as stopping a wheel of fortune to seek advice, imparted valuable information through fun interactive games. The creative solution also reminded the player that gaming should be fun, creating a positive connotation.


Distribution

The central station for the campaign was the ‘Let the dice roll remain fun’ microsite. The next step was to present the microsite and survey to the world, along with other helpful content. In trying to reach as many young people as possible, the campaign was active on 24sata, Croatia’s number one publisher website. In a bit of a psychological masterstroke, the creative content was branded as being for an 18+ audience, a sure way to entice the younger people the campaign wanted to reach. 

Along with 24sata, the campaign played simultaneously on three leading lifestyle portals among a niche audience. On each portal, the life stories of gambling addicts were creatively adjusted to achieve maximum reach. 24sata chose a leading story, catching headlines and photos to attract the target’s attention. In addition, it published social media posts and stories that led to native articles.

24sata launched the campaign in November, the official month dedicated to the fight against addiction in general.

Results

The first expectation was exceeded when more than 2,000 respondents completed the survey (1,000 more than the KPI). 

The three main campaign results were: 

1. TOTAL CAMPAIGN PAGEVIEWS: 274,600 
The total number of page views implied the number of total microsite page views that reached 179,380 views (almost 80,000 views more than the KPI) and native articles page views. Articles reached 95,200 page views (3x more than the KPI). This is an absolute record high result, above all expectations. 

2. MICROSITE INTERACTIONS BY AUDIENCE: 137,340 

3. HELPLINE CLICKS: 214 
This may be the most valuable result. Out of 2,208 participants whose microsite quiz results indicated that their behaviour was addictive, 214 of them clicked on the helpline widget to seek advice or treatment. This is almost 1 in 10 people who decided to rethink their relationship with gambling.

Takeaway 

Nothing beats a good story. A transparent, detailed, personal introspective story is something that is always, no matter the channel, an ultimate way of attracting attention and creating an intimate relationship with the main character. It tends to provoke natural reactions and interactions.

Theory and practice combine for maximum results. Real stories leave a bigger impact on readers than just theory. Doctors’ advice and information combined with real-life experiences can create maximum effect.