Gamification is a trend we’ll likely continue to see more of—people already are spending 3 billion hours gaming per week globally, Trevor Roald told participants at the IRF Invitational, held May 28–June 1 at Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort in San Jose del Cabo on Mexico’s Baja Peninsula.

A “mobile technology evangelist” with QuickMobile, Roald shared some tips for getting gamification right. First up is to understand that it’s about a lot more than fun and prizes—gamification can drive organizational efficiencies, he said. In fact, according to a study by Gartner, 70 percent of organizations plan to use at least one gamification option in 2014.

The key, Roald said, is to build experiences that will motivate people to change their behavior. To do that, you must have a good feel for who your audience is and design your game to address that specific audience. Are your people achievers who thrive on winning awards and gaining public prestige? Do they like to discover things for themselves rather than have the game dictate how long they have to accomplish a goal? Are they more in it for the social interaction than the game itself?

Roald said to think in terms of game mechanics (the “what”) and game dynamics (the “how”—this is the human element). For example, awarding points, badges, and the ability to move up to new levels provides both awards and status, and being able to win challenges gives people a sense of achievement. A group of salespeople might love the sense of competition they get when you provide a leaderboard that tracks points in real time; while a group of nonprofit executives might find a game mechanic involving gifting and charity appealing to their sense of altruism. All too often one or both of these key elements is missing or mismatched, which may be why 80 percent of games this year will fail, according to the Gartner study.