Dennis Yu

I play video games for a living now-- sorta

Well, perhaps not traditional video games, such as Pac-Man or Space Invaders– I’m talking about how every website is now incorporating game dynamics. But if you consider how Facebook, LinkedIn, FourSquare, MerchantCircle, Twitter, Farmville, or other sites operate, according to these game dynamics you’d be hard-pressed to tell me they’re not video games:

  • Points: Earn points for not just killing monsters, but fully completing your online profile and spamming your friends to join (LinkedIn and Plaxo).   You do want to be at 100% completion, don’t you?  Even Google is getting in the social media game with the 100-point scale for Google Local Business Center, as well as the “Favorite Places” program.
  • Levels: With more points, you unlock the next level. It’s amazing how hard people will work to get to the next level– for example, in Farmville, even though you’re not getting any financial benefit.  You can’t sell things, like you can with Diablo 2 items, World of Warcraft, or Second Life, where there are currency exchange markets.  The combination of earnings points to achieve levels is no different than the power of frequent flyer programs and MLM schemes. Name any forum and show how it’s not a video game to achieve ego.
  • Collection: In Boy Scouts, you had badges to collect. Online, you have the same thing, whether you’re checking in to FourSquare, collecting more friends on your Facebook Fan Page, or trying to win that Twitter contest for free Italian food.  You can be hooked on these games or Hooked on Phonics– the viral power is the same. Imagine how the US education system could be revamped with the viral nature of points, levels, and collections!
  • Randomization: What do Las Vegas and Christmas have in common?  When you pull that slot handle or tear open that gift wrap, you get that moment of anticipation not knowing what you’re going to get. Email is the ultimate game of unwrapping Christmas presents– it’s Christmas every day.  Are you one of those who refresh their email every 90 seconds or check Twitter?  Then you’re hooked on that intermittent stimulation. The move to real-time search increases this ADD, such that every website creates this type of anticipation.
  • Community: You get rewarded to sell out your friends. But it doesn’t have to be doing so for promoting Tupperware, unregulated health products, or virtual gifts in your favorite Facebook application. It can be used for recruiting local advertising resellers or even homeschooling your kids.  Games are only interesting when your other friends are there playing it.  How much fun would Facebook be if you had no friends?  And your “score” is only valuable in context to those of your friends. How much advantage is your laser hair removal if all your friends already have it?

Now consider any website or business from the viewpoint of video games– points, leveling, collection, randomization, community– and see how it’s not any different than a big big real-world video game.  In the world of local online advertising, it’s not enough to create business listings, multiply out local PPC campaigns, or have a solid platform in general.  It’s got to be social.

And in 2010, with the merging of local, social, and mobile– you’ll see game dynamics come together in ways that will astound you.  Unlike the desktop computer, the phone has a GPS to tell you where you are, a camera to read bar codes, and perhaps a gyroscope so you can shake, fake lightsaber battles– or do things that are actually useful for your business!

The world of online and offline is rapidly becoming one big video game– and portals such as Facebook, which have all your relationship information (in a good way) are going to make us all children play for points.  They have the social graph necessary to make the game possible, such that we can all keep score– and pay, of course.

Dennis Yu

Dennis Yu is co-author of the #1 best selling book on Amazon in social media, The Definitive Guide to TikTok Ads. He has spent a billion dollars on Facebook ads across his agencies and agencies he advises. Mr. Yu is the "million jobs" guy-- on a mission to create one million jobs via hands-on social media training, partnering with universities and professional organizations. You can find him quoted in major publications and on television such as CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, NPR, and LA Times. Clients have included Nike, Red Bull, the Golden State Warriors, Ashley Furniture, Quiznos-- down to local service businesses like real estate agents and dentists. He's spoken at over 750 conferences in 20 countries, having flown over 6 million miles in the last 30 years to train up young adults and business owners. He speaks for free as long as the organization believes in the job-creation mission and covers business class travel. You can find him hiking tall mountains, eating chicken wings, and taking Kaqun oxygen baths-- likely in a city near you.
I'm a member of Blitzmetrics Academy and a friend of Dennis to boot. Not only is Dennis highly intelligent and full of great and creative ideas, he's also incredibly generous with both his knowledge and his time. Success couldn't come to a better guy. Thank you for all that you do for the world, Dennis! 🙏

Michael Pacheco


Thanks 🙏 for being shining light in this industry. Love what your building for works overseas too network for jobs so innovative. Dennis helped me navigate having bad experiences with marketing agencies and doing dollar a day marketing which has helped my personal brand tremendously. Highly recommend.

Eric Skeldon

Founder at Kingdom Broker

Working with Dennis has been a delightful experience. After meeting him in 2015 I got to collaborate with him on countless occasions. His understanding for state-of-the-art marketing, his implementation, and his leadership put him into the top 0.01% of marketers and mentors.

Jan Koch

Ihr kompetenter Partner für innovative KI-Strategien.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Dennis for my podcast in 2021 and since then we have maintained a friendship that grows with each interaction. I have seen Dennis' devotion to his friends and clients firsthand, and our conversations often result in us talking about how we can provide more value to the people around us. He is someone whom I can ask questions on a technical level, and look to on a personal level. If you have any hesitancy about hiring him, get over yourself and do it!

Isaac Mashman

Help scaling personal brands.

Geez, where do I start recommending Dennis? First, he is an absolutely brilliant marketer who understands where marketing is today and where it's going tomorrow. He also has an incredible passion for the International Worker community. The lessons he has taught me from his almost 20 years of experience hiring International Workers have been immense. Most importantly though. Dennis Yu is someone who wants the absolute best for you and is willing to tell you the truth. Dennis sat with me at a point in my business where I was floundering but did not want to admit it. He asked some very straight forward questions to get me to admit my issues, highlighted the issues, and then helped me create a roadmap to success.

Atiba de Souza

International Keynote Speaker | Video Content Superman | Superconnector |

Dennis, which I had the pleasure of working with is one of the most giving, honest and tell you as it is person I ever know. The knowledge this man has is remarkable and he just gives it out freely. He is not pretentious and always entertain anyone big or small in the industry always willing to help. If you ever get a golden opportunity to work with him or mentored by him say YES!. You will notr regret Dennis, which I had the pleasure of working with is one of the most giving, honest and tell you as it is person I ever know. The knowledge this man has is remarkable and he just gives it out freely. He is not pretentious and always entertain anyone big or small in the industry always willing to help. If you ever get a golden opportunity to work with him or mentored by him say YES!. You will not regret

Nixon Lee

The PR Whisperer

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