News

Clients are running for the Pokémon

Olga Kazaka
Dr.sc.comm., A.W.Olsen & Partners partner, lector of the University of Latvia

The economy of attention in which we live is interesting because the attention of consumers has become a currency. Every day we exchange it for bonuses of organizations fighting for this very limited resource. It is limited because it is impossible to save attention for the future, and at a certain period, it is possible to focus on a small number of objects. Moreover, today many are seeking for it: friends, relatives, work, study, media, social networks, a variety of companies, interests, etc. In this situation, organizations are forced to go beyond the usual marketing campaigns, integrating their offer in the environment where the attention of target audience is focused.
Just one day the attention of the vast number of consumers has been focused on hunting for a virtual Pokémon with the game Pokémon Go. Looking at it, some people began to think about the times and customs, some enjoyed motivation to go out more often and walk more, some warned about cyber threats and possible injuries and communications professionals thought how to draw attention to organizations using this common enthusiasm.
New obsession turned especially useful to restaurants, bars, shops, leisure centers, museums, and other organizations focused on youth. The current advertising wisdom has appeared – clients are running for the Pokémon.
Marketing specialists who decided to play this game, have begun to activate Lure Modules, which attracted much more Pokémons. This allowed visitors to catch in one place as many monsters as they would have got walking several kilometers, making it an attractive place for the Pokémon fans to stop. A special bonus – training rooms on your territory, where young people come to fight among themselves. Game developers have already mentioned that in due course it will be possible to buy the ability to install the training room at the desired location.

How we have been catching Pokémon hunters
Fashion and entertainment center Rīga Plaza immediately responded to the offer of our team to arrange a campaign for Pokémon Go fans. On Friday and Saturday, we had been actively giving away Pokémons in the center. The day before we had announced through the media and social networks about the special opportunities for the players – you can get more Pokémons and bonuses from Rīga Plaza as well.
Cooperation with the Pokémon Go players’ community helped us more precisely to convey the news to our desired audience. As a result, on Friday just a few minutes before the shopping center opening a group of hunters armed with phones were standing at the entrance. Some of them reported about their goals wearing hats with Pikachu.
Two days we were constantly intensified Lure Modules, visitors hunted. The internal radio regularly announced messages on the campaign. The stream of visitors during this period increased by 8%.
An important question that we asked ourselves was whether we could turn players into buyers. At a certain period, it was possible. Hunters bought fast food and continued hunting. We noticed there were children with parents who accompanied their kids studying the content of the shelves and hangers. This is a solvent audience. Perhaps some people were shopping.

First conclusions

The question that excites communicators: Does it work? Yes, that worked especially well to attract attention and demonstrate the client’s positioning. Our news hit the mainstream media, including radio and TV. Do not expect that such a campaign will attract large buyers, perhaps more small impulse purchases, especially when there is an incentive in the form of bonuses and special offers for the campaign participants. It is important to provoke them to buy, because otherwise the visitors would take only Pokémon, leaving a dirty floor and disappointment for the campaign organizers.

I think that soon enough a huge number of pocket monsters in advertising will be commonplace. As in many other cases, only pioneers get the best results. Therefore, for each new campaign we will have to come up with something new. I am waiting when the Pokémon Go developers will offer additional methods of monetizing attention.
There must be a number of brands and organizations, which do not want to associate themselves with this game, because of the target audience mismatch. Expensive boutiques do not like youngsters running around in their luxurious interiors looking for Pikachu. Anti-Pokémon sentiment has already appeared.