Not Just A Game
Within 5 days of its launch Pokémon Go was downloaded more than 7.5 million times, making it more popular than the dating app Tinder and nearly more popular than Twitter. More average time is spent on Pokémon Go than is spent on several other leading mobile apps, including WhatsApp, Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook, according to USA Today. It also shows unusually strong user retention with more than 60 percent of people who have downloaded it using it daily. Not only is the game fun to play, but has created a new way for people to get out, explore places they never would have, and meet new people.
What is it?
Pokémon GO is essentially the world’s biggest scavenger hunt, where players roam the real world looking to capture and collect little virtual creatures called Pokémon. Players go to PokeStops, which are often local landmarks, to receive rewards. Some locations are seeing so much traffic as a result that warning signs are popping up all over the world. The game works by using a Smartphone’s GPS of your real-world location and augmented reality to bring up cool-looking Pokémon on your screen, overlaid on top of what you see in front of you.
The ultimate goal of the game is to “catch’em all”. There are currently 151 Pokémon to collect – some more difficult to find than others – and once captured players “train” Pokémon at virtual Gyms to become more powerful. Pokémon Go is a free-to-play mobile app but you have the option to use real money to buy in-game currency called PokéCoins, which you use to purchase Pokéballs, the in-game item you need to be able to catch Pokémon. PokéCoins can be purchased or earned by playing the game.
Why should you care?
Pokémon Go generates a huge amount of foot traffic for brick and mortar businesses which of course includes hotels, restaurants, attractions and activities. As Pokémon Go players hunt for their prey, local businesses are capitalizing. A simple in-app purchase and a creative marketing campaign can draw in large amounts of new customers and increase in sales.
And YES, they are in the Caribbean. Not all Caribbean destinations have the game as of yet, but they will be making the game accessible to more and more locations over time. Currently Pokémon can be played in Aruba, USVI, Puerto Rico, Turks and Caicos, Barbados, Antigua, Bonaire, Dominica and Anguilla.
Strategies to Increase Sales Using Pokémon Go