Have you ever thought to increase traffic in a physical store, an owner might lure a virtual panda-looking creature named Pancham to lurk near the sales section?
Or perhaps, a marketing team will create a campaign that will only exist in a world of augmented reality that only a group of patrons who are hunting furry little creatures can see?
In a time where traffic to physical stores has been trending down for the past couple of years, partially because people were staying put and shopping on their phones, or playing video games, maybe the world of video games on their phone is now providing a way to reverse that trend.
I am sure you have seen the fuss over Pokemon Go. It is a thing, and even more than that, it is a hit. A big hit. Crowds of people are gathering and playing and retailers want those crowds, of course. Some proactive companies are taking advantage already, simply by playing along.
In the game, there are predetermined spots that attract the characters, which in turn attracts the players. An example is a gym for the little creatures. These spots encompass a 15 metre radius, so it is a definite possibility that it could fall on some retail floor space already.
Capture customers while they capture Pokemon
Some retailers are playing the game as a normal player, luring game characters, which attracts the players hunting these game characters. Now this does not mean placing a dish of fried rice on the floor and hoping an imaginary dragon will come in, but within the game, lures can be purchased and used to entice and localize a desirable character. If you lure it, they will come.
But retailers may have a more formal way of taking advantage of the popularity of the game soon, as well.
Niantic, the creating company of the phenomenon, is apparently planning to allow companies to sponsor places, or pay for a presence, on the game’s virtual map. Niantic already does this with its other augmented reality game, Ingress, where companies can pay to be featured within the game.
The competition for brand awareness and ad space just got a whole new arena to play in. If there is a lot of budgets that include provisions for ‘augmented reality marketing campaigns’, then I would be astounded, but maybe it is time that we start thinking about advertising in the world between digital and physical.
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