Niantic turns to outdoor ads for Pokemon Go's one year anniversary

Dive Brief:

  • Niantic Labs is celebrating the one year anniversary of Pokemon Go with outdoor ads featuring real time data from the game app in Tokyo, London and New York per The Drum.
  • The campaign was created by Wieden+Kennedy, and some of the billboards were activated as PokeStops allowing game players who engage with the ads to collect in-game items.
  • Real-time app data on the billboards included messaging such as, “With over 16M Pokémon caught in New York, 17.5M in London and 32.2M in Tokyo just yesterday, we felt that the best way to celebrate these local communities would be to publish these stats and call out these awesome cities.”

Dive Insight:

Pokemon Go was a viral hit last summer and provided marketers with a blueprint on the effectiveness of augmented reality (AR) as well as how to connect mobile experiences with real world interactions. To put the game’s popularity in context, after its June 6 release last year it immediately surpassed Instagram and WhatsApp in average time spent, passed Tinder in app downloads and Twitter in active daily users, and in July it created 1.1 billion interactions with 231 million people on Facebook and Instagram.

Marketers are still grappling with AR and virtual reality (VR) for messaging, but both technologies offer enhanced storytelling capability along with a more immersive brand experience. A recent example would be spirits company Rémy Martin using Microsoft’s HoloLens for a mixed reality experience to promote its cognacs.

Despite some obvious successes, tangible benefits for brands that use AR and VR technology continue to be elusive and broad market acceptance may not be there yet. Like many emerging technologies, the benefits for AR and VR can be significant, if done right. The explosive success of Pokemon Go notwithstanding, the technology opens up new storytelling fronts for brands only when its a natural fit for specific brand message and strategy. One size does not fit all in this instance.

Filed Under: Corporate News Mobile
Top image credit: Getty Images