October 2, 2017
Game-thinking Guru Amy Jo Kim on Accelerating Early Product Design
Note: This podcast has some minor sound issues, our apologies for the audio inconvenience.
About the Podcast:
How can “game thinking” help strengthen long-term engagement with your users? Today, on this episode, my guest Amy Jo Kim discusses just that. Amy Jo Kim helps entrepreneurs bring their ideas to life with game thinking to help accelerate early product design. (And no, it’s not the same as gamification—Amy Jo tells me there’s a difference between the two.) We chat about how “game thinking” brings a unique component to building a great product, in addition to what makes a great design.
“The thing that makes games truly interesting and sticky isn’t all the mechanics, it’s that you have a context where you can get better at something that you care about often while doing it with other people that you’d like to engage with and get to know better.” – Amy Jo Kim
Amy Jo also shares insight to help you get from good to great:
- Think like a scientist. Embrace what’s wrong with your ideas as well as what’s right with them.
- Shift your thinking. Don’t manipulate user behavior, instead build a learning architecture around how/why they behave.
- Know when to test and who. Testing your product ideas requires different people at the different stages.
About the Guest:
Named by Fortune as one of the top 10 influential women in games, Amy Jo Kim is a world-renowned social game designer, community architect & startup coach. Her design credits include Rock Band, The Sims, eBay, Netflix, Cover Fashion, indiegogo, nytimes.com, Ultima Online, Happify, Pley and numerous startups.
Through her coaching practice, Amy Jo helps entrepreneurs & innovators 10X their product/market fit with Game Thinking. She pioneered the idea of applying game design to digital services, and is well known for her 2000 book, Community Building on the Web. She holds a PhD in Behavioral Neuroscience from the University of Washington (along with a BA in Experimental Psychology) and is an adjunct Game Design professor at the USC School of Cinematic Arts.