Pokemon Go is currently the hottest craze to hit our day-to-day lives in a long time.
The game has over 7.5 million players and is at the forefront of reality superstardom by becoming the most sought after mobile app across all generations, genders and cultures in less than a week. Holy Pokemon power! Most marketers are instantly going to think “How can I get my brand in front of all of those players?” (at least we do!)
Pokemon Go’s success relies heavily on bridging the gap between the online and offline consumer experience. So as expected, marketers and brands are on the edge of their seats waiting to see whether this is just a fad and/or how much advertising power Niantic (Pokemon Go’s maker) will actually provide to companies. The app currently hasn’t made sponsored locations of the game available, however, companies are starting to see and feel the benefits of quickly hopping on board with this latest fad. Retailers, brands and businesses of all shapes and sizes can benefit greatly from attracting, engaging and retaining new customers by leveraging the power that is this game.
Hopeful that your business can drive powerful results from the Pokemon Go fever too? Here’s how:
The first guinea pig to try sponsored partnerships with Pokemon Go is McDonalds in Japan, though clothing store Hot Topic is seeing the highest results. The retailer was given the chance to create gyms for players to battle and train their characters in (aka in their stores) and researchers then tracked how the sponsored locations were performing for various Hot Topic locations. You can see below that the clothing retailer skyrocketed to being one of the top brands benefiting from the new app. Anticipation of sponsored locations is growing and the apps creators are disclosing that the sponsored locations product will be released soon and will charge advertisers when users show up at their store. However, companies don’t have to sit around and wait to capitalize on the mania. Look into your options of becoming a partner and what that could mean for the results of your business.
Stoneyfield yogurt took a more creative approach and kicked off a 4 week campaign to target 10,000 Pokestops (which are landmarks for players to collect points and characters at) in popular apps that consumers are using in conjunction with Pokemon Go (genius!). To do this the yogurt company matched location data from Pokestops along with ad-supported apps that players open most frequently. Players within the app are then served game-themed Stoneyfield yogurt ads directing players to the closest retail stores that sell the yogurt. Stoneyfield wanted a creative way to stay top of mind and guide potential cusotmers into a location of purchase for them to experience their brand.
Another way a business can use Pokemon Go to their advantage is to determine whether they’re located by a “Gym” or “Pokestop”. Not sure if your company is? Just open up the app on your phone or check the Ingress Map online. If your location is lucky enough – order some of the apps gym badges and customize them for your business. You could also put a sign outside of your doors letting players know which team is currently in control of your “Gym” and offer discounts to them.
Not near a Gym or Pokestop? That’s ok – brands can still hop on the apps bandwagon by offering discounts and promotions to players. A company can tie incentives to the progress of the players like reaching specific levels and capturing rare Pokemon.
Businesses can easily tie incentives to social media too. Pokemon Go let’s users take photos of themselves with Pokemon in the shot. Encourage users to share a photo of them with Pokemon, check in/tag your business and upload on social media platforms by providing them with a discount code, free shiping and more. A brand could also post fun brand photos regarding Pokemon and use the apps hashtags of #pokemongo and #pokemon to stay top of mind within the social conversation.
Get moving and take your product or service near a “Pokestop” to create a “Gym” or “Lure” strategy to the streets! Specifically:
- Load up a vehicle with your brands logo on your top swag + giveways or sell a special Pokemon lunch menu for players. This creates general brand awareness, buzz and engagement and fosters a sense of community.
- Upload a picture with any rare Pokemon your customers have found and have them tag your brand for a special discount.
- Create buzz around a Pokestop with Lures to increase Pokemon generation
Pokemon Go is a total suck of battery life on players’ phones. By offering free recharge stations or free Wi-Fi within your brands location you will be providing an incentive to players to come inside and peruse (Think a sign that reads: Pokemon Go stealing your phones life? Come in and get a recharge, free of charge, on us!). While the game doesn’t really use heavy amounts of data just yet, it does require it.
Aside from being on the cutting edge of augmented reality movement, Pokemon Go is consumer focused, inexpensive and merges the online and offline experience with sight, sound and motion. Additionally, it’s creating a social reinforcement by bringing people together over a common goal and spawning strong social sharing and emotional connection. Oh, and it’s totally headline worthy! In less than a week, Pokemon Go had more than 6 million mentions on Twitter. Marketers should want to get in on that following, those mentions and that conversation too.
Being smart and agile with digital marketing strategies, like hopping on a recent social bandwagon that is creating positive buzz around, it like Pokemon Go, might be just the refresh your current marketing plan needs.
Brands are starting to drive measurable sales and revenue results by implementing smart marketing around Pokemon Go and yours could be next.
Go be memorable! Go into the market!
Go be where your customers are with Pokemon Go.