‘Pokemon Go’ These two words have got everyone either drooling or swooning or ooohing or aaahing. Everyone (and their sister) is trying to figure out how to cash in on this ‘phenomenon’ that has burst upon our collective consciousness like a flying saucer.
I am mainly talking from the point of view of brands. Alongwith Snapchat, brands now have the all-consuming, addictive Pokemon Go to connect with the millenials (and actually non-millenials too).
I am sure the marketing team of Pokemon Go will be drowning in a deluge of partnership and sponsorship offers and proposals. So
If I Were Marketing @ Any Business….
How would I monetize Pokemon Go?
Wild and Imaginative Uses of Pokemon Go (some obvious ones, some not so obvious)
E-commerce drop points
E-commerce portals can set up drop points at Pokestops. People can choose to get their parcel delivered at Pokestop nearby. Thus they can save on delivery cost and also get Pokeballs and Pokemons.
For promoting the radio station, the radio channel can install speakers either at Pokestop (with municipal permissions) or at another popular location and set up an Incense. This Incense will attract trainers, thus gathering a ready audience listening to their radio channel while catching Pokemons.
Pop Up Stores
Brands which operate through the pop-up store model can use Incense or Lure near their pop-up store to attract attention to it.
Leaflet or coupon distribution
Use the nearby Pokestops to hand out coupons/ leaflets of local eatery/store to people who have come to catch Pokemons.
Event companies can use Incense to attract people to their event/activation/float van.
Fitness Apps can figure out how to connect to Pokemon Go to log in the amount of walking the player did, calories burnt etc. Since the use of fitness apps, fitness bands, etc is extensive, this is a natural extension of the app.
Large Department Stores
Large stores can set up ‘Incense’ in those chosen sections of their stores where they want more people to visit. Example: set up an incense in the slow moving women’s bottom wear section within your store.
‘Pokestop Here’ Balloon
Free Wifi at Pokestops
Give free branded wifi at a Pokestop near you. Put up a noticeable banner mentioning the wifi name and password.
Recruitment and Shortlist for Job
For filling up the vacancy of Digital Marketing Manager, Game Designer, Social Media Manager or Marketing Manager (for a brand catering to millenials), try using Pokemon Go. Announce in classfieds, Linkedin Jobs and other job portals that ‘to apply for the position, the person has to meet HR person at a Pokestop in XYZ city’. Give some clues that can be cracked only by playing the game. The entire idea is to attract only those people who are in tune with the latest happenings in the digital world. So that they can market better through that medium and to that TG.
Furniture brands can place chairs/ sofas at Pokestops or near Lure modules when hordes of trainers gather. Since trainers look for places to sit while catching Pokemons for those 30 minutes, if they find a nice chair or sofa to sit on, they are likely to remember it or appreciate it.
Wrap an open canter or a double decker bus with your branding. Make it the ‘Hop-on Hop-off Pokemon Catcher bus’. People can hop onto it, catch Pokemons on the go and get off at the next Pokestop. The bus can run for a limited period between Pokestops. It could be a free service, creating buzz and word of mouth.
Giveaway and Promotions
Brands targeting millenials can giveaway PokeCoins as a promotional offer (i.e. money for buying PokeCoin).
All brands running loyalty programs can give away PokeCoins instead of points on every purchase. Obviously this integration has to be first offered by the game developers.
Pokemon trainers can belong to one of three teams- Team Mystic, Team Valor and Team Instinct. If and when the game developers open it up, Team Sponsorship would be a way to reach a gigantic number of users.
Industries already using Pokemon Go
- Tourism Industry- Tourism industry has enthusiastically welcomed ‘Pokemania’ in places where its launched. Cafes, theme parks, museums, nature parks, churches and other landmarks are automatically deemed PokeStops in the game, attracting hordes of players. So they have plenty of opportunities to capitalize on the Pokemon craze.
- Retailers- Savvy local retailers are setting up Lures in their areas so as to attract foot traffic into their stores.
- Food Chains- McDonald’s has tied up with Pokemon Go in Japan to place a ‘Gym’ at each of their 3000 outlets across Japan. Gym will attract teams of Pokemon Go players, battling with each other for the ownership of the ‘Gym’.
- Vacation Rentals- Tripadvisor is advertising vacation rentals on the basis of types of Pokemons found in and around them.
Which of the wild and imaginative ideas do you plan to use for your business on Pokemon Go? Share the list with other business owners if you like it 🙂