We’ve heard a lot recently about gamification and adding game elements to non-gaming content to improve user engagement. Now, a new study from the mobile social network MocoSpace gives us some numbers to back up the idea that gamers are more engaged than other kinds of social network users. I talked to the company’s CEO, Justin Siegel, about the survey, and, for the record, also took the opportunity to ask him about what happened with that MySpace bid he was trying to make.
First, the survey. In March, MocoSpace conducted a study of 10,000 “anonymous” smartphone users on its network, which has 18 million users in total.
And although gamers sometimes have the reputation of being antisocial types interested only in what is happening on the screen in front of them, the findings seem to show something quite to the contrary: social gamers tended to have nearly three times as many friends as those who didn’t play games (50 versus 18 friends). And they spent more time on the site, too: 141 minutes versus 45 minutes. And it seems they do more on the network, too: twice as many photo uploads, for example.
On the one hand, these findings seem like a no-brainer. You simply could argue that those who like MocoSpace really like it, and spend time on the site. You could even turn the data around and say that those who have more friends tend to like games on the site.
But on the other hand, data like this could provide some insight into how a content company should plan its wider content strategy, to work in games into the mix more to improve the stickiness of other content. That kind of move, you could argue, could have been behind the investment announced earlier this week that Turner Broadcasting Europe made into the new portal TeePee Games.
Siegel says that MocoSpace is now putting more effort into developing its games offerings than it is other kinds of services on MocoSpace, such as user-generated content, including rolling out advertising on the platform.
“We’re bringing more games to MocoSpace through our own development efforts, and we are continuing to work on the product experience,” he told mocoNews. “That’s the two-pronged approach.”
On MySpace (NSDQ: NWS). I took the opportunity to ask him whatever happened with that bid for MySpace that was reported back in February, before MySpace began to open its books. “Based on more recent subscriber number losses, the business is in much worse shape than I or anyone else thought it was, so it’s a lot less interesting to us,” he told mocoNews. “We have lost interest.”
Among the 20 or so names being floated as interested parties are Chris DeWolfe, who had founded MySpace; the Chinese Internet company Tencent; Vevo; Bebo; and various private equity groups.