Pokémon Go: 4 Predictions for a New Ad Company
Pokémon Go is everywhere. I’m not just talking about it being all over the news and media, but physically everywhere as budding trainers explore new areas to try and “Catch ’em all.” Within just a few of days of being released, the app has already garnished more daily users than Tinder or Twitter. This thing has gone more viral than Spanish Flu, and it’s hard to predict where it will end up – or is it? Check out these 4 predictions for what the hit sensation will become.
Disclaimer: I downloaded Pokémon Go two days after it was released and am thoroughly hooked. As a kid who grew up in the 90’s, Pokémon was definitely part of my formative years. I collected the cards, played in tournaments, and played the Game Boy game. While I may not be much of a gamer these days, I am an avid walker and enjoy the little bit of nostalgia Pokémon Go brings. I’ve even got my wife hooked.
1. Pokémon Go will charge to add Poké Stops and gyms
I already saw my first business advertisement targeting Pokémon Go players. It was a Mexican restaurant dubbing an event as a “Pokémon Go meetup” with a DJ, drink specials, cheap tacos, and most importantly, “lures dropped all night.” This was a business leveraging the fact that they have a Poké Stop nearby to draw in customers, but what if your business wanted to do the same and didn’t have a Poké Stop? I think it would be foolish to assume that Nintendo and Niantic aren’t going to find a way to capitalize on this marketing potential, just as it would be foolish for a business not take advantage of their Poké Stop. Let’s face it, this game is drawing some serious foot traffic to places that might not otherwise have it.
“Not only do they know where you’re going, they know precisely how long you’re staying there.”
2. Logos and brands will make their way on to the map
The information is already all there. As Niantic pulls information down from Google Maps, they also pull down the business locations as well. What if instead of only seeing a gym and Poké Stop stand out on the map, you saw the McDonald’s Golden Arches as well? Businesses that are trying to connect with a millennial crowd will be especially intrigued by the idea of getting more eyes on their brand, so I wouldn’t be too surprised if the map gets a little more crowded down the road. With as barren as it is near my house right now, it almost seems like Niantic planned for this.
3. Businesses will pay to host exclusive events
The Pokémon Go trailer has already eluded to the fact that there will be special events that take place where people can catch rare Pokémon. It is safe to assume that where these events take place may just end up going to the highest bidder? Imagine the kind of traffic you could generate to your business if it was the exclusive place people could catch a Mewtwo or Zapados? I think it is something the tourism industry would be gawking over. I wouldn’t be too surprised if I♥NY gets in the Pokémon business.
4. Pokémon Go will sell your data
This one is hardly a prediction and I’m sure that Nintendo and Niantic are doing it right now. Pokémon Go is collecting an enormous amount of useful data that marketers will find very useful. Not only do they know where you’re going, they know precisely how long you’re staying there. I mean come on, Facebook and Google are doing it. These are no longer “social media” and “web search” companies. They’re advertisers. It’s how they pay the bills. What’s even more interesting for Pokémon Go though is that they are already having higher interaction rates with their app, which grants them even more valuable data.
The fact that Niantic has its roots with Google and their maps is a further testament to this concept. By signing in with a Google account, they can essentially access all the information you have tied to it. While I doubt they really care about the baby photos you emailed to your mom, they certainly do care about your contacts, purchases, and spending preferences, and they have just that.
These are just some predictions from a guy who likes to think about these sort of things. Who knows, maybe Pokémon Go will transform into more of a fitness app, or maybe they’ll implode on themselves like a supernova. With as much as they’ve achieved in a few days, nothing seems out of the realm of possibilities.
What are your predictions for Pokémon Go? Will it keep on its course or quickly change its trajectory? Please share in the comments below.