Why Pokemon Go is the Ultimate Omnichannel Experience


Traditionally, omnichannel works as a sales approach that seeks to combine all shopping mediums into one, seamless experience. According to Forbes, Marketo, one of the leading Marketing Automation providers said,

“Marketers now need to provide a seamless experience, regardless of channel or device. Consumers can now engage with a company in a physical store, on an online website or mobile app, through a catalog, or through social media. They can access products and services by calling a company on the phone, by using an app on their mobile smartphone, or with a tablet, a laptop, or a desktop computer. Each piece of the consumer’s experience should be consistent and complementary.”

Experts are praising companies like Disney, Virgin Atlantic, and Bank of America for exemplary work on their omnichannel experience. But, in recent weeks we’ve seen a success story that trumps these marketing powerhouses. Pokemon Go.

They forced us to do research.

In any sales cycle, there is an education process that must take place before any purchasing decisions can be made. Integrating education into your overall platform is a must. But is it the most seamless experience? Usually not. Any great sales person will tell you, don’t provide your potential customers with every minute detail. The trick is to tell them enough to get excited about the product and then let them loose to find out more information themselves. The information feels more trustworthy and you reap all of the benefits.
Pokemon Go gave us just enough information to understand the basics of how the game is played, but let us loose in the virtual world with little direction. In order to learn, players had to talk to other players, join chatrooms and discover new elements of the game while playing. Seamless.

They chose Poke Stops that make you WANT to stay.

The Pokemon Go app creators have established a business model perfect for marketers. They’ve made local hang-outs and landmarks an integral part of the game. Now, players of all ages are flocking to these areas to catch Pokemon, grab supplies, and maybe stop for an iced coffee or a quick snack before heading back out on the trail. They developed seamless transition between playing the game and paying patronage to a local business.

They Blurred the lines between reality and augmented elements.

Perhaps the most unique feature of the game is the augmented reality element that allows for fictional characters to be placed and experienced in the real world. For those living under a rock, the AR experience isn’t limited to the intricate mapping and GPS coordinated Pokemon appearances. The game really comes to life when in battle. When you’re duking it out in a gym or catching a wild critter, the game uses your device’s camera to place your opponent right in front of you, in the real world. The integration is a huge point of differentiation for Pokemon Go and makes them a perfect example of seamless omnichannel integration.

They created a symbiotic relationship.

A Quora article said, “As much as the social media revolution has meant the two-way exchange  in dialogue and interaction, omnichannel is the realization of social  business. If the first phase in the evolution of the customer relationship was messaging and media, the future is product research,  selection and payment. With personal preference data that can be used  universally on devices, brands can either jump at the opportunities made real by omnichannel or wait until their brand is the only one not  integrated and playing nicely to allow consumers to be continuous.”

Pokemon Go is developing a value-adding social system that provides players with a community within and without the game. In return, Pokemon Go receives monetary compensation through their virtual store, and in the future, from business sponsorships and advertising.

Any way you slice it, Pokemon Go is teaching Sales and Marketing teams around the world how to successfully integrate an omnichannel approach. Not everyone can implement a ground-breaking, record-breaking application to drive business. But, everyone can employ these strategies in order to educate potential buyers, create an environment that encourages people to stick around or return, show buyers how the product will work for them in the real world, and develop symbiotic relationships.