At ICE 2023, the talk of the expo – as always – was all about the future of gaming. And with our huge presence there, much attention was also paid to the future of gifting and player rewards within the gaming industry. 

That future is incredibly exciting for every sector of the industry, across Britain, Europe, the US and beyond into more and more emerging markets. 

Because the gaming sector has always been at the forefront of new technology, the future of gifting and gaming is already focusing on some of the biggest global innovations, including AI, web3 and the impact of the ‘experience economy’. 

Let’s take a closer look at some of those key trends and explore how they could impact your player reward programs. 

It’s all about the ‘experience economy’ 

Experience is everything in the 2023 gaming world, so it’s little wonder that the ‘experience economy’ was a huge talking point of ICE.

There’s been a huge rise in entertainment spending over the last couple of years, overtaking gambling spending to become the dominant factor – the dominant desire – of players interacting with gaming companies. 

Organisations can no longer take ‘a good experience’ as a given. Players are looking for exceptional experiences – ones that are both entertaining and streamlined. 

Both psychology and behavioural science will have a big role to play in helping gaming companies deploy more appealing, more engaging experiences in the future, and player rewards will form a huge part of that. 

Players expect their reward experience to be just as exceptional as every other part of their journey, and they’ll be looking for gamified, entertaining gifting programs that grab their attention, appeal to their emotions and encourage them to return. 

Gift & Go is leading the way here with transformational player reward programs that deliver exceptional experiences – from the initial win right through to redemption and delivery. 

AI and web3 will open up new ways to deepen and personalise players’ experiences 

Those exceptional player experiences will also be heavily informed and enhanced by AI in the near future, with machine learning, smart chatbots and adaptive algorithms dominating conversions, product development and strategic plans. 

There’s no escaping its prevalence in the gaming sector, and the breadth of opportunities that AI offers is huge. From playing against lifelike AI opponents to identifying problem gamblers faster than ever, immersive AI environments are only going to get better and better. 

The metaverse is a key trend to watch, as is web3, which promises to leverage blockchain technology and NFT ownership for more powerful, more interactive, more secure experiences. 

AI is already playing an important role in gifting. If you can harness AI to assess player behaviours and automatically prompt more relevant player rewards – as Gift & Go is already doing – you’ll be able to deliver those superior experiences. 

Frictionless payments experiences matter more than ever 

Payment technology is always an important trend to watch, and AI and blockchain technology are certain to have a big impact here in the near future. 

But perhaps more pressing for gaming organisations right now is the payment experience. It needs to be frictionless to meet players’ demands. It needs to be fast, secure, and flawless. 

To do that regularly, again and again and again, technology needs to play its part. 

Gaming organisations need to prioritise a single platform that streamlines the payment experience for every player, and that frictionless checkout process needs to extend to player rewards too. 

That’s why at Gift & Go, we’ve always made sure our technology prioritises a seamless reward redemption process, every step of the way. 

Employee experience should also be an important priority 

While player experience is clearly a vital area to focus on for the future of gifting and gaming, we shouldn’t overlook employee experience. 

It was an important topic at ICE 2023, and one that continues to feature prominently in organisations all around the world. 

Why? Because post-pandemic staff shortages continue to be a major challenge. 

Organisations must work hard to attract and retain a diverse workforce if they want to grow their business in the future. 

Gifting and rewards have an important role to play here too. We already have several organisations using Gift & Go as part of their employee reward and recognition programs, as it’s a great way to show how much you value your team and thank them for all their efforts. 

It’s already proven to increase employee retention and engagement, and the right gifting and rewards incentives in the future are sure to help you attract the talent you need.  

Regulation, sustainability and innovative technology will all play important roles 

Lastly, regulation, sustainability and innovative technology will all play important roles in the future of gaming (and gifting) as their reach and impact continues to grow. 

New regulations will continue to interact and intersect with technology, as the latter adapts to better meet those changing requirements. 

Sustainability will continue having a big presence, impacting everything from strategy to product development, and it’s quite possible we’ll see more regulation around this in the future too. 

Thankfully, technology will be a huge asset here. With player rewards for example, software like Gift & Go helps give gaming organisations greater insight, control and adaptability in their gifting campaigns and strategies, making sure gifts and rewards aren’t over-stocked or under-fulfilled, preventing needless waste and pointless shipping. 

That’s just one of the many ways that new technologies and new software will have an important role to play in the industry. 

The future of gifting and gaming is incredibly exciting, and as always, Gift & Go will be leading the way, at the cutting-edge of the very latest technologies. 

Make sure your gaming organisation doesn’t get left behind. 

Book a demo of Gift & Go.


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