Whether you played Pokemon GO or not, it’s simply inevitable that you have seen people talking about it, read countless articles or saw people walking around trying to catch ’em all.
Played by aspiring trainers of all shapes and sizes, this game succeeded in creating a community that’s bigger than Twitter’s community and it took two weeks to do so. And Twitter has been around since 2006. So, what is the catch and why is Pokemon Go managed to do what others can just dream about? The answer is very simple – it’s fun! (also – it’s Pokemon). This is the first lesson that Pokemon Go can teach us about planning strategic marketing activities, both online and offline. What you plan on doing to develop your business should of course be taken seriously, but you should do it because you love, and not because of someone thinks that it could be useful. Pokemon Go is disrupting marketing as we now, providing us with valuable lessons along the way.
1.Online and offline go hand in hand
In case you haven’t played Pokemon GO, it’s based on augmented reality, taking your surroundings and connecting them with virtual elements, in this case, Pokemon. The image from your camera is overlaid with Pokemon, which are then positioned on and around objects in your vicinity. The app also uses various sensors when you move your phone around, so that the Pokemon always stay in place, even when you are not focused on them. So, using GPS, this game connects your offline world with your online world, and that is the recipe for successful marketing strategy. If you are serious about having a great marketing campaign, then your online and offline efforts should work together, in unison, to create a compelling story that drives and engages people. Don’t try to put unnecessary boundaries between various marketing channels, as they all should serve a larger purpose. Make sure your online marketing campaign makes the best out of offline and vice versa.
2. Engaged customer is a happy customer
And a happy customer is a returning customer. The same goes for users. Keep your users happy, and they will continue to use your app or product no matter what your targeted audience is. The more Pokemon they play, the more captivated the user gets, and you should keep that in mind when creating your services and putting them on the market. By playing, users level up and gain the ability to battle in gyms and the more they play, the higher the chances of catching a rare Pokemon, which gets them bragging rights amongst their friends. That can be compared to various loyalty programmes that are a great way not only to collect leads, but can prolong interaction with your buyers, turning them into loyal customers. The same logic can be applied in social media marketing – which in return creates a community of buyers that keep coming back. Give your users a chance to communicate with your brand because that can help you build a bigger and loyal community of satisfied customers. There are countless ways you can keep the customers engaged. Consider gamification, for example. Read our articles on gamification and gamification psychology to learn more.
3. Social media community goes a long way
Most great companies invest enormous budget in marketing campaigns, but that was not the case with Pokemon Go. It didn’t flood you with commercials as they usually do. In fact, most of its marketing was done on a word-of-mouth basis. People were interested in what this game can become and the Internet was literally flooded with free, user-generated, content. Pokemon Go went viral on social media which created social proof. Most of us can’t imagine buying a new mobile phone without watching a couple of reviews on YouTube first. Businesses go unnoticed unless we hear some buzz around them, mostly on social media. From the start, social proof has been apparent with Pokemon Go. You see many people having fun, all playing the same game walking around your town and throwing Poke balls. You instantly get the urge to download the game and play your part in the Poke World. Creating a community might be the hardest part, but the end results can pay off tremendously if you can hype them up in a way that they create promotion and content, completely for free, just because they are hyped. Even if you spend a big budget on creating such a community, you might end up spending less than you would normally spend on an advertising campaign.
4. Size doesn’t matter after all
Wether you are a small local business or a multinational company the ways of promoting your services should not only be very well thought of in advance, but also in accordance to your current events and local community, just like Pokemon Go turned local sightseeing attractions a cultural heritage into Poke stops – place to recharge some energy and collect valuable items. And, just like in most games, in Pokemon Go you began from scratch, like many entrepreneurs. You should always find time for advancement and strategy. No matter how small company might be, if you can create something that caters to uncatered or unrealized needs, you can do wonders. I mean, let’s be real here – Pokemon GO is a relatively simple game, especially compared to modern blockbuster games. The reason it’s so successful is that it can satisfy needs and deliver fun and addictive gameplay. That alone is enough to forget that the game, in fact, is very limited and has tons of problems on its own. That’s a valuable lesson for any business and marketing campaign – focus on what makes your product stand out and don’t lose that focus along the way.
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