Pokémon GO and marketing
Pokémon GO is the new game in the Pokémon franchise, started in 1995 by Japanese giant Nintendo for its handheld, the Game Boy. Back then, the game was all about taking your character to the top of the Pokémon League, going on adventures, catching mysterious creatures, trading them with your friends, etc. But all this happened in a fictional universe that Nintendo had created within the console.
Now, in 2016, Nintendo and Niantic have revolutionised the world with the franchise's first mobile game, Pokémon GO, an app that combines augmented reality with the exploration of real environments to hunt Pokémon. Although these creatures are digital, they overlap their world with the real world. The app was launched in July and has since taken the world by storm in the more than 35 markets in which it has gradually landed.
This revolution hasalso brought with it a revolution in the world of marketing. For example, although the game only recently arrived on the Japanese market, the fast food chain McDonald's decided to go ahead and negotiate with Niantic to take advantage of its arrival. It was then that they signed the first agreement to include their premises within the application. In other words, the Japanese have to go to one of the almost 3,000 McDonald's in Japan, as they have become key elements to progress in the game, such as gyms and PokéStops. With this masterstroke, McDonald's in Japan has ensured a greater volume of sales .
Normally, some of the stops and gyms in the game are public and important places such as Puerta de Sol in Madrid, Bioparc in Valencia or the Centre of Contemporary Art in Malaga. Also, given the problems caused by the traffic of people in locals, Niantic has enabled a form so that these companies and other entities can request the removal of PokéStops and gyms in their area .
Also, a survey of 500 users showed that: 59% of players are male, 41% are female; the average age of users is 29; players play from Monday to Thursday and on weekend evenings; and more than half play between one and three hours a day. This has been a benefit to some businesses.
how has the game managed to become popular so quickly? In part, thanks tosmart marketingprinciples :
- A good branding strategy can sell almost anything.
- Timing is very important
- Social proof is everything these days.
- A sense of identity leads to loyalty.
- You don't need a gigantic advertising campaign.
- It is important to reward users' dedication.
- Fewer and simpler instructions mean more users.
Some of you may think it was just a summer rush, but we can say that Niantic is still growing its daily revenue and the game version is not even the final game, so Niantic Labs and Nintendo have a few pokéballs up their sleeves. What will they surprise us with?