Happy Friday! Doesn’t every weekend feel just a bit more relaxing if you are caught up on gamification and customer loyalty news? We think so! Find out what we think is the best industry news below.

Social media making the mundane more fun NineMSN 8/16/2012 Randi Zuckerberg, former head of marketing at Facebook and the sister of founder Mark Zuckerberg, highlighted the gamification trend as a new way for social media to make life more fun and luxurious. Users are seeking apps, games and services that make their lives easier and the trend is becoming more and more common in our lives.

5 Tips to Increase Customer Loyalty adotas 8/15/2012 Customer loyalty is becoming more important for businesses, but what creates the kind of loyalty that businesses want? A recent survey finds that “among active social-network active users, 21 percent stated they would make a purchase based on outstanding customer service from a company, regardless of the item’s price.” This article lists 5 other tips to building loyal customers, including rewards and engagement programs.

What Companies Miss on Their Social Engagement Journey Destination CRM 8/16/2012 Any marketer knows that building a social community around your brand isn’t easy. Focusing attention on brand influencers and advocates in different ways can maximize the benefit of a social engagement plan. Encouraging both these valuable customer types, can be done easily through customer loyalty programs, offering a wide variety of the things users want, mainly: status, access, power and stuff.

The pro’s guide to gamification Net Magazine 8/16/2012 We love seeing someone take the time to produce a comprehensive and thorough guide to gamification, the various applications for it as well as provide some best practices. This is a great guide to gamification as a whole, as well as a great look at BigDoor our gamified rewards program. We really appreciate being mentioned!

How Gamification Can Reduce the Need for Discounts Entrepreneur 8/14/2012 Gamification guru Gabe Zichermann highlighted the importance of intrinsic value in gamification in this 60 Second Solution video. While physical rewards are often great motivators, finding out what emotionally motivates your users is equally as important to success.

Google Gamifies Olympic Doodle X4 Business2Community 8/10/2012 Is there anything that Google can’t do? Riding on the popularity of Olympics, Google created 4 Doodle games for site visitors to play, earn points and share. The search engine giant has so far released hurdling, basketball, slalom canoe and soccer. You can also see all the non-game Olympic Doodles in the article as well.