What Does Pokémon Go Have to Do with Marketing?

If you’re wondering why there’s a sudden resurgence in your colleague’s interest in Pokémon this week, you’re probably the only one who hasn’t heard about Pokémon Go. Pokémon Go is an augmented reality app for iPhone and Android devices, released this week. Essentially, you open up the app and it combines the nostalgic world of Pokémon with our very own, leading us to wander around the world with our phones in front of our faces looking for the little creatures.

But this isn’t the only augmented reality people are using: from Google Glass to educational apps like Star Walk, augmented reality has been on the rise for several years.

Besides looking really cool while using it (see below), what does this mean for marketers?

Constantly Connected

This probably isn’t alarming news, but people are rarely without their mobile phones. According to this study by Deloitte, the average person checks their phone 46 times per day. After years and years of hearing about the importance of mobile in marketing…we’re finally there. Augmented Reality applications like Pokémon Go are able to thrive due to the fact that our mobile devices are so ingrained into our everyday lives, no additional technology required. Our phones have, for better or worse, become an extension of ourselves.

This has left marketers with the task of determining how to reach their constantly connected audience. But while your audience is almost always online, they’re also getting sick of the constant advertisements. Ad blockers are more popular than ever, and organic social reach is declining in favor of a pay-to-play model. So, what is a marketer to do?

 

Looking for More

It’s not enough to just show up. Once you’re in front of your target customer you simply have to do more than ever before. Users are looking for innovative concepts, personalization, novelty and accessibility. Create an experience for your audience. No, you don’t need to create an augmented reality app, but you should consider the principles and apply them to your strategy. Ask yourself: how can this user become involved in my brand?

 

Willing to Engage

Believe it or not, people want to participate. Apps like Pokémon Go, the IKEA catalogue app and Snapchat geofilters have proven that users are willing to engage with interactive technology and campaigns. So, get your audience involved! Interactive marketing campaigns are one of the greatest ways to turn an engaged member of your audience into a paying customer. As opposed to putting your brand, product or service on display to a potential customer through traditional advertising, businesses must now demonstrate their brand values through every single action, immersing the customer into the culture wholeheartedly. Brands are more a living, breathing thing than ever before. It can be intimidating, but you have to embrace it.

 

Being a marketer is a challenging task; you have to constantly learn, adapt and be prepared for change. Never be complacent, and definitely go catch some Pokémon.