Pokemon Go and its Lesson for Email Marketers
Pokémon Go has served as a dynamic hint of what we can expect from augmented reality. Though cartoonish in nature, the game has turned culture upside down, introducing endless new content in the expanses of space we once thought were bare. It isn’t quite as influential as it once was, but while Pokémon Go was at its peak, it affected a wide variety of fields, including business. Savvy entrepreneurs harnessed the popularity of the game to drive consumers to their stores. While Pokémon Go is a huge phenomenon in its own right, it’s certainly not the last we’ll see of augmented reality. Forward-thinking marketers have an eye out for the innovations that are to come, and you would do well to include yourself among them.
As we’ve seen with Pokémon Go, businesses that honour in-game incentives can see their store traffic dramatically increase. “Location personalization has long been used by savvy email marketers to help customers find store locations nearest to them. But Pokemon Go presents a new way to use geo-targeted emails. Instead of just showing people nearby stores, you can show them all Pokemon Go points of interest that are near your store locations,” writes Movable Ink. “For example, if there’s a Pokemon Go gym around the corner, point it out on a live map. If your store is a Pokestop, even better. You can direct customers to all the Pokestops near your store, plus areas where specific Pokemon have been spotted.”
As is the case with any technological innovations, those who harness progressive concepts will thrive, and those kept out of the loop will be left behind. Augmented reality will bring never before seen personalization tools to the table, and virtual marketers need to be ready for it. “As Pokémon Go has proven, augmented reality is perfect for mobile platforms, and geotracking is a great way to personalize the individual user experience,” writes Marketing Land columnist Jason Warnock. “Consumers want personalization, especially if it provides them with a better, more individualized customer experience. This isn’t new information, but 64 percent of brands don’t personalize email copy, and only one-third use customer data to personalize the products and services featured in an email.”
We’re already seeing virtually customizable image-based messages throughout several platforms, however, Augmented reality will bring the classic e-greeting to a whole new level. “Say the customer has a birthday or anniversary coming up. Brands can send triggered emails that integrate AR and deliver a customized template, such as a digital birthday “party” complete with a virtual cake and balloons,” says Warnock. “If this sounds foreign, remember that Snapchat already does this to some extent.”
As augmented reality approaches its ideal state, all verticals will be under its umbrella. These fields include retail, travel and tourism, and of course, automotive, which is already implementing augmented reality concepts. “The automotive industry was an early adopter of AR technology. Brands like Ford, Volkswagen and MINI have co-opted the technology in various ways, such as giving viewers a 3-D tour of a new car, complete with specs, dimensions, design and all,” writes Warnock. “With a successful cross-channel distribution program, carmakers could implement trigger campaigns that target consumers on the hunt for a new car and offer them a 360 AR-enabled tour of the cars they have researched online — perhaps right in their own driveway.”