What is Pokémon GO?

If you’ve been living alone in the wilderness for the past month – Pokémon is back, and better than ever. Niantic, a software development company in the heart of Silicon Valley with investors like Google and Nintendo, has transformed the playing card game for children into a mobile gaming phenomenon. The app utilizes geolocation and augmented reality (AR) to create an immersive experience bringing fantasy into your every day life.

How Popular is Pokémon GO?

Survey Monkey claims daily active users is somewhere between 20-25 million. Additionally, Pokémon GO was the fastest to ever reach the godly 20 million download mark. What marketing professionals should find most intriguing – time spent on the app (left) and the user demographics (below). There is no other app out there that can engage such a diverse group of people for such a long period of time.

Marketing Playbook

Clearly this app poses a number of opportunities for those willing to embrace the craze, employ a nimble marketing strategy, and engage on social media. But before you even consider incorporating Pokémon GO into your marketing efforts, ask yourself these 3 questions:

1. Would your business benefit from increased foot traffic?

[my creatives would kill me if all of the sudden hundreds of people were banging down the door]

2. Does your brand align with a new, trendy game?

[maybe this marketing tactic won’t apply to your doctor’s office, law firm, financial institution, etc.]

3. Do you market B2B, B2C, or both?

[utilizing Pokémon GO won’t bring executives or decision makers to your business]

For those of you with interest peaked, we’ll outline a few strategies below.

Lure Module

What:  A lure module increases the rate of Pokémon generation near a Pokéstop for half an hour.

When:  Use during lull hours to increase foot traffic.

Where:  Must be near a Pokéstop.

Cost:  $100 = 14,500 Pokécoins → 8 Lures = 680 Pokécoins → 14,500  / 680 = 21 eight-packs → (21*8)/2 = 84 hours → $100/84 hours = $1.19 per hour

Social Media

Get involved with Pokémon Go in your store. Instagram, Tweet and Facebook your interaction with the game and watch the attention it brings. Connect with people on another level. Look how much interaction you will receive, building relationships over a common bond and ultimately gaining the trust of potential customers. Not only is this good PR but a great free way to market your company in a different light.

Gym Battle

What: Players battle on behalf of their teams in a king-of-the-hill style gameplay trying to take control of the gym.  To hold a gym teams need multiple members to to defend it, while only one member leads.

When:  Use to create a little friendly competition. Incentivize players by offering percent or discount off to gym leaders (with proof of gamer ID).

Where:  Must be near a Pokémon Gym.

Looking Forward

In the future for Pokémon Go, companies will have the opportunity to create “sponsored locations.”  These locations are paid opportunities to be featured prominently on the games virtual map.  Advertisers will be charged on a “cost per visit” basis, similar to “cost per click” used by Google’s search advertising according to techcrunch.

City-wide events are soon to come for Pokémon Go.  Although we are not quite sure, events might have timers, which will mean these events will need to be conducted within an expressed timeframe.  These events will attract a wide range of Pokemon players, allowing them to meet up from time to time, further encouraging social interactions between players.