In the short time since its release in early July, the Pokémon Go app has gotten millions of players outside and moving. Worldwide, users are flocking to locations, or Pokéstops, where the pocket demons dwell — which could be inside your store.
Brick-and-mortar stores, restaurants and other businesses that opt to pay the Pokémon franchise to become virtual locations within the game will undoubtedly see an increase in foot traffic. The entertainment value associated with the brand could transform retail by boosting customer engagement and loyalty.
Aside from using it to drive people into your stores, you can also integrate the game into daily operations to further capitalize on the app’s global popularity.
Consider its Influence When Tailoring In-Store Content
The aesthetic of Pokémon Go is much like Japanese anime, which could possibly affect upcoming fashion trends.
In-store displays influenced by Pokémon could help capture a share of this burgeoning market. It’s all about amplifying the overall impact of that increased foot traffic by having content that speaks directly to and excites the audience coming in.
Even if Japanese anime fashion doesn’t take over, retailers should still consider the vast amount of Pokémon apparel out there and — if it makes sense for your target demographic — tailor displays to incorporate more of it.
Partner With the Game, But Don’t Advertise
You could also partner with Pokémon Go to offer virtual, branded outfits players can acquire through in-app purchases to dress their avatars. There's already talk that the fashion choices in the app aren’t “trendy” enough, so it’s a perfect time for e-commerce to step in.
Users could create branded Pokémon items with their favorite lines of clothing. And retailers can take this further by offering players an in-app redirect to their websites, where users could purchase the same outfit in real life.
Take a Cue for Your Own App
Pokémon Go is now used more than popular mobile apps like Snapchat, and has been downloaded onto more Android devices than Tinder. The game transformed the conventional app experience, and can teach brands a thing or two about how to alter their own apps to increase revenue.
One of the coolest aspects of Pokémon Go is that it was designed specifically for mobile users. Pokémon Go makes use of functions like GPS and smartphone cameras to create an exclusively mobile experience. You can make use of other phone functions like push notifications, barcode scanners and voice recognition to develop an intriguing user experience that’s accessible only within the context of your mobile app.
Pokémon Go manages to boost engagement through an interactive experience, as demonstrated by the app’s 6 million Twitter mentions in a single week and its widely shared content. This high level of interactivity will be an invaluable asset for retailers that adjust their mobile marketing efforts to capitalize on the phenomenon.
Considering the foot traffic Pokémon Go could bring to your store, think about how to tailor your initiatives to appeal to that audience. Mobile has created so many fragmented moments, and Pokémon Go is providing retailers with a chance to establish their brands as a thread running throughout all those experiences.
Anthony Nicalo is the vice president, platform, at Mobify, a mobile customer engagement platform that facilitates, in one place, all of a retailer's real-time interactions with its mobile customers.
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Anthony Nicalo is the VP Platform at Mobify, a mobile customer-engagement platform that facilitates all of a retailer’s real-time interactions with its mobile customers in one place. Nicalo guides and grows the platform capabilities for serving mobile marketing and extends the platform ecosystem through partnerships. Nicalo is a thought leader in digital marketing, an expert in omnichannel commerce, and a frequent presenter on the future of commerce, mobile retailing, and shopper marketing, including at Shopper Marketing Expo, iMedia Summits and Kantar Retail.