Full disclosure, I’m a self proclaimed retired Pokémon Master. I’ve searched far and wide, caught ‘em all, and been the very best. But the time has come for me to dust off those old Pokéballs, shine up my gym badges, and show these youngins how it’s done.
This time, however, I won’t be sitting at home glued to my Gameboy Colour while virtually exploring the 8-bit Pokémon universe. Instead, I’ll be relying on two-feet and a heartbeat to physically adventure around my city to capture digital monsters that have been placed in my neighbourhood using AR technology. What a time to be alive!
In case you haven’t heard, Pokémon Go has been a MASSIVE success and the stats that the app is generating are simply mind blowing. For example, in two days, Pokémon Go has been installed on more Android devices in the US than Tinder and Pokémon Go is enroute to surpassing Twitter in daily active users. Furthermore, the game is making Nintendo roughly $1.6 million per day. Not bad, not bad at all.
There are already a number of aspiring Pokémon Trainers here at the Affinio office. However, we wanted to know who else is talking about this revolutionary app and who are the people responsible for its overnight success. In order to do this, we ran an interest-based segmentation on anyone who mentioned #PokemonGo on Twitter.
As you can see, the audience discussing Pokémon Go is made up of many different interest-based communities including Pokémon Junkies, Female Millennials, Marketers, and even Male Sports Fans. Furthermore, if we look at the demographic breakdown of those tweeting about Pokémon Go, we find that there is a fairly even gender split. We can also see that it is the 25-34 year old age group dominating the conversation (I sense a hint of millennial Poké-nostalgia coming into play here).
For interest and insight sake, let’s learn a bit more about some of these interest-based clusters.
As you can see, the Pokémon Go craze has transcended many boundaries and is tapping into the interest of different communities that are very unique and distinct from one another.
Overall, I believe the incredible success of Pokémon Go can be boiled down to three main factors:
- The Pokémon franchise already has a massive fan base, both young and old. Releasing a modern app taps into those who may have forgotten about their beloved pocket monsters and stimulates a sense of nostalgia.
- The game is one of the first to bring AR technology to the mainstream and gives many users an experience they’ve never had before.
- Hype! The internet has been stewing over the concept of “Pokémon in the real world” since Google’s 2014 April Fool’s Day prank. This, followed by a 2016 Super Bowl Commercial, resulted in a ton of buzz.
However, I do have my concerns about the longevity of the game. It’s still too early to tell if Pokémon Go is simply riding the hype train, or if it has actually discovered a way to truly engage those pesky millennials. Either way, Niantic (the developing company behind Pokémon Go) must be strategizing ways to cement its staying power. One possible solution would be to design a business model where businesses pay a fee to transform their location into a Pokémon Go hotspot to increase foot traffic around their location. Secondly, as shown in the analysis above, the game is really resonating with sports fans. Perhaps Niantic can form partnerships with sports stadiums to host special Pokémon Go events during games. Actually, we’ve already seen the baseball community embracing Pokémon Go, now it’s time for Niantic to monetize this opportunity.
The overall fate of Pokémon Go is still in question. But at the very least, countless people have been physically brought together for the love and challenge of catching ‘em all. Take a walk downtown and you will see hordes of people staring at their phones, flicking pokéballs at virtual monsters, and ultimately having a great time.
To all my fellow Pokémon trainers out there, I wish you all well on your quest to be the very best. See you at the pokémon gym (Go Team Instinct!)
This was initially posted on the Affinio Blog.