I’m a product manager looking to create an engaging feedback loop to bring myself and my team closer to our users and their needs. I want our Nolt board to feel welcoming and energetic, and above all active.
Here’s an idea for a self-perpetuating positive engagement loop: Like Reddit gold, but instead of gold, Stars.
It’s a give-and-receive system that rewards positive interactions and highly rewards exemplary board engagement.
The system follows the four principles of building a habit-forming experience:
- Variable Rewards
In a nutshell, getting votes, liked comments and so on earns you engagement points, which eventually give you ‘Stars’. Stars are like ‘MEGA LIKES’ that you can give to other users who suggest really cool ideas or have really helpful, funny or positive comments. Scoring lots of engagement points shows the board owners that you’re participating in a really positive way and that you add value to the board community. Board owners can then reward the highest engagers with ‘Badges of Honour’.
When your actions get ‘likes’ (heart button) or your ideas get votes, you accumulate some kind of score (let’s call it ‘Engagement Score’, or “ES”). When your ES hits a certain threshold, your Nolt account gains a ‘Star’. Receiving a Star also gives you a big boost to your ES. The scoring metric would be something like:
- your comment receives a like: +10pts
- your idea receives a vote: +20pts
- your idea gets moved to the ‘Completed’ status: +100pts
- your comment receives a star: +30pts
The 1st Star in your ‘Starbank’ is generated at 50pts, and then every 100pts after that
When you receive your first Star, Nolt would display a hint message somewhere prominent that guides you to the section of the Account where the Stars system is explained and you can see your Starbank.
Awarding Stars to other users
Stars appear in your Nolt account panel. Underneath an idea, in the feed/comments section, next to the ‘heart’ icon there is also a ‘star’ icon. A user who has a star can click this icon to award the other member a Star. There is a special animation/interaction that celebrates this moment for the Star giver and makes it a delightful experience (see: The Power of Moments).
Receiving a Star
When you receive a Star:
- You receive an email notification, explaining that you have been awarded a Star, and with, quoting the comment that got you the star and linking to your Account page when you can see your Star and read more about the Stars system
- An event is published to the Admin ‘Activity’ feed. Admins can click this event to go to the comment that was awarded the Star.
- A Update event is fired to the Stars leaderboard so it is reshuffled as necessary
Stars Leaderboard & Badges of Honour
There would be a top10 leaderboard In the Admin panel. The weekly bulletin email would also list the Stars Leaderboard. Not sure if the Stars leaderboard should be publicly visible, I don’t think this is essential to begin with.
From the Stars Leaderboard (or the Admin Stars Leaderboard), an Admin (or the Owner) can give a listed member a Badge of Honour (‘Honor’ if you’re in North America). A Badge of Honour is a special icon that appears by your Nolt avatar when you are on the board where it was awarded. Badges of Honour are Nolt board-specific.
List of Badges:
A Nolt user can view their Badges of Honour and the boards they came from in their Account page. Admins can see a list of all Badges of Honour that have been awarded, and can remove or modify any Badge of Honour given.
Integrating Stars into the core experience
- The ‘Star’ action is visble to all users, with a tooltip that explains that you will gain Stars through positive actions on the board.
- ‘Starred’ comments have some visual change to make them stand out in a list of comments. E.g. colour banding. A starred comment would also have a hover tooltip that explains why it’s highlighted in this way.
- the Stars scores would be visible to Admins when clicking/hovering on a Member name