Pokémon Go takes the modern path to success. They enabled their users. What is it that has led it to become the most downloaded game in the app store with over 5% of worldwide users on android installing it in the first 2 weeks? The marketing model. When we look at competing games in the app…
Pokémon Go takes the modern path to success. They enabled their users.
What is it that has led it to become the most downloaded game in the app store with over 5% of worldwide users on android installing it in the first 2 weeks?
The marketing model.
When we look at competing games in the app store like Mobile Strike and Game of War we see the same business model of in game purchases being utilized, but the marketing channel selection of Pokémon Go is what has made it such a breakthrough example.
Even when we stop to look at the success of apps like Candy Crush we see an older lower potential business model that relies fully on the game-play and the tastes of the general public. Thousands of unique games come out every year and it is a roll of the dice to say which will catch the user’s imagination. Business models that play like dice rolls are bad ones.
Mobile Strike, for example, has spent hundreds of millions of dollars with TV ads featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger to set itself apart in a crowded field of similar games. This means their business model has been a traditional channel to online channel funnel that is reliant on a steady stream of expensive TV buys. The quality of the ads and budget have successfully established it as the #1 brand of its type and users are then to go online and perform a curiosity download. The conversion rate of this model is hampered by a hard capped trust factor and a need for steady spending in order to turn a good ROI. This model may not even be making a good return at this stage in its’ life-cycle and may rely on the next phase where spending stops and residual income continues with no expense.
Advertisement of this type always suffers from the natural skeptical tendencies of the consumer. The number one rule of viral and social media marketing, and modern marketing, is that people trust themselves and their friends more than celebrities and anything resembling ads.
The key to true success in a crowded field is creating a system of content creation within your audience. The modern business model is creating a platform for others to create content and not paying for content with the hopes of returns that outweigh expense.
Pokémon Go has invested in game-play and paired it with a unique and fresh idea of real world mixed-reality game-play, but more importantly they invested in the automated viral marketing in their content planning. I heard it said that McDonald is in the real estate business and not the hamburger business, well good app design is in the sharing business and not the game business.
The strongest marketing tool a company can capture is the desire for their audience to share their own experiences. With this self-perpetuating content among trusted circles to and by people with similar interests. Good marketing has always been about targeting the right audience with the right message in a way that will make them share their experience. This concept has never been truer than in the digital age.
Every time a player takes advantage of a well-planned content sharing system within the app they are sharing their delight with a product to their friends who are in fact a targeted audience of people with similar instances. You have created a source that people in the audience trusts and targeted a specific audience with the perfect demographic without spending a cent. With every social network investing in algorithms to create similar and look alike audiences this is another example of humans doing it better. Brands can try to be cool and brand their product as cool or brands can enable those that the real world finds cool and trusts, their friends. Pokémon Go prioritized enabling users above game mechanics, play or traditional ads and have, not changed the game, but given us a shining example of marketing right that is too obvious to ignore.