Gamifying your next virtual meeting or event is a great way to differentiate yourself from more lackluster virtual happenings, make events engaging, and keep people connecting with each other. While the virtual space is the norm for many today, there is always room for improvement in terms of creating more fun and rewarding events and virtual meetings for attendees and sponsors alike.

As virtual events come to the forefront, they will require more incentives and gamification to keep everyone engaged. Giving your virtual event participants a nudge by gamifying your next virtual meeting can help ensure that sponsors feel some love and satisfaction with the outcome of these virtual goings-on.

As things are right now, only 10% of event apps use gamification to drive their desired action from attendees (and that’s just considering live events). It’s an underappreciated addition that can make any virtual event more memorable, unique, and engaging for attendees.

Here are some of the benefits of event gamification, and some tips on how you can better achieve your goals by gamifying your next virtual meeting or event.

What is gamification for virtual events? 

Event app gamification is the idea and process of adding game mechanics to an event. This is usually (and best) done by allowing attendees to complete challenges in the app, receive points for each completed challenge, and see how they rank on a leaderboard compared to other participants. Depending on what’s up for grabs as a reward, different challenges can be worth different amounts, and those who win — or even just participate in the game — can receive prizes.

Gamifying a virtual event or meeting is an appealing way to improve networking opportunities, sponsor engagement, session attendance, and the overall event experience — among other great benefits.

The benefits of event gamification

The ability to gamify a virtual meeting or event is becoming more accessible. This means that at some point, every event will employ some type of game that attendees can play.

So, you can either choose to ignore the chance to upgrade the event experience, or you could go all in on virtual event gamification now and really stand out amongst a sea of uninspired corporate functions.

Use it right, and event app gamification can bring a lot of benefits, such as:

  • Networking opportunities (that lead to real connections) 
  • Higher levels of engagement for your sponsors
  • Increased attendance of sessions (with more interaction) 
  • Heightened brand awareness
  • Higher post-event survey completion rates

What makes a good event game?

Excited young man sits at home table looking at laptop screen celebrating online win during virtual event game

First and foremost, event games need to be fun — after all, they are games. If your gamification strategy or idea lacks this integral element, it may not produce the results you were hoping for.

But what are other important event game considerations? What exactly makes a game fun? And, what are you hoping to achieve with your virtual event game?

The components of a good game

Good virtual event games should follow what we believe to be the three essential ingredients of any good game:

  • It should be fun
  • It should provide a friendly (and fair) challenge
  • It should be rewarding (i.e., worth the time and effort it takes to participate, especially for winners)

With these three key principles in mind, it’s time to develop your game.

Event gamification examples

There are myriad examples of virtual event gamification, but let’s talk about the steadfast game formats:


Your event attendees are smart, and people enjoy a good challenge that allows them to boast some of their brain power. Trivia games with questions that are tailored to your event are a great way to inform and engage each participant and to help them retain important event-related info.

Virtual scavenger hunts

A staple of in-person events, scavenger hunts can still be done effectively for their virtual counterparts. With this gamification format, you can send attendees virtually anywhere you’d like to gather tidbits of information or keywords. This is a great option to encourage session attendance, and it provides great value for vendors, too, as participants can be incentivized to interact with as many as they see fit.


A classic, easy-to-understand game that can be effortlessly tweaked to suit your event. Build some event-specific bingo cards within your virtual event app and let the contestants loose. For moderation and fairness purposes, be sure to only include things that can be verified by staff. This is a great gamification idea to encourage attendees to see and do as much as possible.


There are nearly endless possibilities in terms of dreaming up a friendly contest for attendees to participate in. You could have them compete to see who can attend the most sessions, gather the most information (as determined by you), or network with the most people. When things like these are gamified, they immediately become interesting (thanks, dopamine).

7 steps to create a top-tier event app gamification experience

Step 1: Know your goals

Whether you have one main goal or a bunch of smaller goals, having an event game can help you achieve them. Understanding exactly what you want to get out of implementing an event game can help you identify challenges and avoid trivialities.

For example, certain challenges can help you increase attendee engagement and survey participation — effectively upgrading the overall event experience. Here are some event gamification ideas for what you could do based on your goals:  

  • Provide sponsors and exhibitors with codes to be given out during sessions that they’re included in. Or, maybe they can share the code on social media — the decision is theirs to make.
  • Include easter eggs in the event app that provide codes and improve attendees’ usage of the software.
  • Reward codes are based on the number of connections made to support virtual networking.
  • Provide codes at the end of surveys to increase participation.

Step 2: Pick the right event technology 

Depending on which event app software you choose, the event app gamification features will vary. Some have games where you can pick and choose from premade challenge options, while others provide more customization, such as assigning tasks to specific sponsors or staff members.

Based on the limitations of certain event technologies or technology providers, it’s important to make sure that the software you choose can help you reach the goals you’ve set out to achieve.

Step 3: Define the scope of the event 

Depending on the size of your event, its planned duration, and who you expect to be in attendance, you’ll want to tweak the event game accordingly. Get started by asking yourself these questions:

  • Will the game run for the duration of the event, or for a limited amount of time during the event?
  • How many challenges are required to ensure that you do not run out? 
  • Is there enough available staff to support the game?

You don’t want an event game to be too over- or underwhelming, so it’s important to understand the capacity of the team in charge of both the event and the game. What can they — and the event itself — handle? When hosting a virtual event or meeting, there may be limits to how many admins are available to you, or how many attendees you can have — so it’s good to keep that in mind during the event planning stages.

Step 4: Write the rules 

Trying to play a game with no rules will only lead to frustration, cheating, and disappointment. It’s important to provide clear, well-thought-out instructions so that people can get acquainted with the rules quickly and know exactly how to play the game.

Another best practice is to consider presenting the available prizes alongside the instructions. This is a good way to encourage people to participate, and it helps avoid confusion about what exactly is being offered to the winners of the game.

Step 5: Choose the prizes 

Prizes are arguably the best part about winning any type of game. That remains true in the case of event games.

Whether it’s providing event-wide recognition (and maybe a mini trophy) or giving the winner something of monetary value, prizes can be used to incentivize attendees to engage with and play the game.

Need some ideas for exciting prizes? Here are a few examples of rewards that we’ve seen given out over the years:

  • Build-it-yourself Lego llamas
  • A Gucci bag
  • Flights to Vegas
  • Cash and/or gift cards
  • Event-wide recognition (during and after the event)
  • A Gift contributed by a sponsor

And remember: If you’re planning on providing physical rewards, it’s important to make it known that they can be mailed directly to winners!

Step 6: Promote the Game 

Offering rewards for playing the game makes it enticing, but people have to know about it first! Promotion is another huge part of increasing participation. There are lots of great ways to do this, but here are a few ideas:

  • Posting on social media before and during the event
  • Sending out push notifications
  • Including it on the event website
  • Having speakers mention it in their online sessions

No one should sign off the event feeling like they missed out on playing, simply because they were not aware of it at all.

Step 7: Celebrate the Winners 

Once the event game ends and the winners walk away with their prizes, that may seem like a natural end to the experience. However, you should consider some cool ways to celebrate the winners, even after the event is over.

For example, the Llama Loot Hall of Fame that Lessonly now has on its website celebrates the 31 people with the highest scores from the event game. It also includes their profile images from the app, which helps personalize the recognition. Now, those 31 winners get to forever have a space that celebrates their accomplishments!

Make your next event anything but boring

Virtual events don’t have to be boring. Event app gamification is one way to foster that IRL feeling of in-person events, in any virtual setting.

If you have any questions about how to use an event app in virtual events, connect with someone on our team who can share best practices, tips, tricks, and other valuable information about creating a successful virtual event game.