En-Gage-Ment: How Do You Entice And Not Annoy Your Audience?

Please allow me to introduce myself. I am the customer you cannot engage on your terms. Those emails you send (since I don’t know you): unopened, in my trash. Place an ad on my Facebook feed, and I’ll add your product to a list of things that I’ll never buy. Do I have a few seconds to answer… No. Ask me if there’s anything else that you can help me with when you catch me in the right mood and I’ll reply, “purple.” Why? Exactly!



So what other cards do you hold in your hand? How do you earn the attention of the impatient, the indifferent, the hard to reach customer. A… survey? This is my answer to that (link to a great clip of a version of The Muppets version maniacal laughing). Please. You could ask me to fill out a survey with a chance to win tickets to every show in the next Springsteen world tour, travel and expenses included – while I’m waiting in the longest of lines at the post office with absolutely nothing better to do – and I’m still not going to fill out the forms.


Huh? That’s right. Because we’ve been conditioned to believe that the rewards for giving out information are not interesting, or the odds of winning too slim. The questions too dull, too time consuming for us to care. So what might hold our attention?



Brackets? Bracketeers is a lead generation platform that looks to connect companies and brands with consumers through brackets styled after the March Madness tournament. Participants vote, make predictions, and interact with one another as well as the sponsors. The aim is to put the engaging element back in customer engagement.


Competition (live voting, prediction contests, versus match-ups) is simply more fun and dynamic than static forms. Gamified content can include a much broader range of material and thereby become less dry. On the business side, there’s multiple opportunity to engage the audience as opposed to the one-and-done potential of traditional forms and polls.



I know I’m not the only one who fills out March Madness tourney brackets without keeping up on college basketball. The format is exciting – making your choices (which is done by drag and drop via Bracketeers), spirited wagers, anticipating the next round… How well will this structure delight participants in other contexts? Early analytics report that Bracketeers users usually return to the site 12 times, spend 4 minutes per visit, and remain active for an hour during the full cycle of a bracket contest.


Bracketeers is the product of veteran entrepreneurs and developers Craig Zingerline and Stephen Phillips. The startup is based in Washington, D.C., and San Diego. If you’re a small business or website owner, look into a free, trial period here.


Photo Credits

Bracketeers | Rob Sinclair

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