How Insight Timer has the best user retention in wellness apps with gamification

How Insight Timer has the best user retention in wellness apps with gamification

Meditation apps are more than just another hype. In fact, the sector’s revenue is expected to jump 22% each year. That translates to a double increase between 2021 and 2025! In reality, however, those benefits will be most felt by Headspace and Calm, who together share 60% of the market for meditation apps. However, there are some apps out there, giving these giants a run for their money when it comes to user retention.

One of those apps is Insight Timer. A free meditation platform with over 70,000 tracks in collaboration with teachers, experts, and even celebrities. There is something for everyone! In 2020, users spent 10,000 years (yes you read that correctly) inside the app. That’s 5 times more than Calm, the #1 meditation app when it comes to revenue.

In this article, we’ll be looking at some gamification examples from Insight Timer, and how they drive user retention!

User retention at the core of Insight Timer’s success

When talking about meditation apps Headspace and Calm are often the ones that come to mind. With a combined 34 million users these two companies generate over 100 million (Headspace) and 150 million (Calm) respectively.

Placed down the list, Insight Timer is only the 10th most profitable meditation app with over 48 million dollars in revenue. However, they are the number one at user retention.

Insight Timer boasts a crazy 16% Day 30 user retention. That might sound low, but it’s almost double compared to the market leaders, neither of whom reach above 8.5%. In other words, Insight Timer gets more bang for their buck!

So, why is user retention so important? There are many bonuses to having a high user retention rate:

  • Increased customer lifetime value. This means more purchase opportunities and more touchpoints for your marketing.
  • Long-time users are 4 times more likely to refer friends and family.
  • Referred users have a 37% higher user retention rate, further pushing the rate up!
  • Loyal customers are more profitable. The top 10% of customers spend almost 3x more than the bottom 90%.

Without a doubt, Insight Timer’s user retention rate is a wonderful achievement. In the US, Insight Timer makes up a whopping 63% of all time spent on meditation apps!

meditation app user retention

The dominance of Insight Timer in both user retention and attention shows that the app’s skill of habit formation is a crucial part of boosting its retention rates.

4 gamification examples from Insight Timer

Insight Timer leverages gamification to form habits within its users. That doesn’t mean their app is a game. Instead, the app uses elements and psychology from games to keep users entertained and engaged.

Let’s look at 4 gamification examples from Insight Timer, and how they contributed to the highest user retention in the industry!

#1 A customizable meditation timer helps users reach their targets.

One of the signature features of Insight Timer is the timer itself. The goal of this timer is to replicate the experience of meditating in a Buddhist temple. Users can set their own timers which empowers them to take autonomy over their own meditation regimen. Besides autonomy being crucial for creating ownership and long-term engagement, it is also fun!

gamification examples insight timer meditation apps

#2 Progress statistics give users positive validation and illustrate their growth.

If people are going to invest lots of time in your app, they need to know what they are getting out of it. A page of progress and usage statistics does exactly that! Insight Timer has one of the most comprehensive examples among meditation apps. In essence, by allowing users to see their achievements, they fulfill the basic needs of competence and accomplishment.

user retention gamification wellness

What this really means is that people want self-growth, and they want to see it visualized! Scientific research is clear that performance graphs positively affect competence need satisfaction.

#3 Streaks that reward participation instead of completion

Streaks are a popular gamification feature often used to boost user retention. But Insight Timer’s streak feature is unique. Rather than setting a static target to hit every day, such as meditating for at least 10 minutes, Insight Timer allows users to mark their meditation as complete, no matter if they quit halfway through the session.

When you think about it, this makes sense. Meditation is a deeply personal activity, and it’s not up to the app to judge when the user has derived enough enjoyment from it! To sum up, this feature rewards users for their efforts and creates a clear visualization of progress, as well as fulfilling the need for autonomy and giving users ownership over the app.

gamification user retention insight timer

#4 Social interaction makes meditation a more powerful experience

The home screen of Insight Timer features a world map that shows who is meditating at that very moment. Not only is this impressive, it immediately makes the user feel like they belong to a greater community.

In short, studies show that social relatedness is a powerful motivator. For this reason, the app allows users to connect and chat with those meditating in the same session as them, as well as auto-posting when you are about to start meditating – encouraging others to join! In addition to social relatedness, having what the app calls an ‘Insight Circle’ serves to build accountability and good habits.

gamification examples insight timer apps mhealth

Set up your own gamification roadmap in 3 easy steps!

Creating a new habit is not an easy job. So how can you leverage gamification to make it work on your own app? It all starts with a plan, tailored to your app. Our team of gamification experts has set up 3 simple steps to your own gamified app!

Step 1- Book your workshop

Our expert-led gamification workshop is open to as many team members as you’d like, and focused 100% on your app. We focus on your goals, target audience, and what’s stopping your app from growing.

Step 2 – Bring your data

We’ll analyze your user journey to pinpoint the most important moments. That way, you’ll know whether to focus on acquisition, activation, or retention. Data is power! Once you understand user behavior, forming habits that drive retention will become way easier!

Step 3 – Pour it into a plan

Now that you understand gamification, the differences between intrinsic and extrinsic motivation, and of course the most important game mechanics, it’s time to set up your plan! You’ll go home with an actionable roadmap, filled with tactics from proven gamification examples to achieve your goals!

PRO TIP: STEP 4 – Implement & improve

Depending on your internal capabilities you might implement the tactics yourself, or work with gamification software like StriveCloud. Our motivation platform allows you to gamify any data point in the user journey, without an endless amount of coding!

Finally, you optimize, analyze, and repeat! Don’t forget, relentless optimization is what made Duolingo the #1 educational app in the world.

Recap

The mediation app market is expected to grow by 22% each year. That means the sector will almost double between 2021 and 2025!

The current leading apps Calm and Headspace own over 60% of the market share. With over 34 million users combined they generate over 100 million (Headspace) and 150 million (Calm). However, Insight Timer beats them in retention!

User retention at the core of Insight Timer’s success

In 2020, over 10,000 years were spent on Insight Timer. That’s 5 times as much as Calm, the most profitable mediation app out there.

Insight Timer is prominent in both user retention and attention. The app makes up for 63% of all time spent on meditation apps in the US.

This is a huge competitive advantage for multiple reasons:

4 gamification examples from Insight Timer

Set up your gamification roadmap in 3 easy steps

Step 1- Book your workshop

Our expert-led gamification workshop is open to as many team members as you’d like, and focused 100% on your app. We focus on your goals, target audience, and what’s stopping your app from growing.

Step 2 – Bring your data

We’ll analyze your user journey to pinpoint the most important moments. That way, you’ll know whether to focus on acquisition, activation, or retention. Data is power! Once you understand user behavior, forming habits that drive retention will become way easier!

Step 3 – Pour it into a plan

Want to create your own gamification roadmap? Kick off the process with a custom gamification workshop led by our experts!

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