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Verizon Wireless has “gamified” its community web site and received a big boost in traffic as a result.

Gamification is the use of game-like mechanics to increase engagement with non-game activities. It’s becoming a popular way to boost interest in everything from corporate web sites to education. Verizon employed gamification vendor Gigya, which was brought aboard through digital agency Modal. Gigya considers the implementation to be a case study in gamification.

Verizon is the top wireless carrier with more than 108 million subscribers. On its website, the company is trying to create a community of socially connected Verizon Wireless users. Modal began building Verizon Insider, the online entertainment and lifestyle hub for all of Verizon’s events, contests, sponsorships, and social initiatives. Gigya provides a number of social and gamification features — sort of like building blocks for making a site more interesting.

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Gigya provided its Social Login product to enable simple user registration. The software gives easy access to permission-based, socially provided data. It also enables comments and sharing, allowing users to distribute content to their own social networks.

Verizon Wireless implemented the Gigya Social Gamification Platform, which rewards users with badges for engaging with the site. That allows Verizon Wireless to encourage behaviors such as commenting on articles and sharing that bring back valuable referral traffic to the Verizon Insider site.

The results: More than 50 percent of the site’s users participated in the gamified environment. On average, users who logged in via Social Login spent 30 percent more time on the site versus the older method. Those Social Login users also generate 15 percent more page views than others.

“Gigya’s social infrastructure was instrumental in helping us reach our social users,” says Beth Tourek, social media strategist at Verizon Wireless. “By allowing users to interact using their social identities, we’re not just engaging with them more effectively but also understanding them like never before.”

Patrick Salyer, chief executive of Gigya, said in an interview with GamesBeat that the implementation took around three to five weeks.

“We had a very high level of participation,” he said. “We gave them a complete social infrastructure.”

Gigya has 125 employees and has raised $15.3 million to date from Benchmark Capital, Mayfield Fund, and others. The company plans to expand to about 175 people this year. Rivals include Badgeville, Bunchball, and Big Door.

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