Pokémon Go: An Association Game Changer?

By Sherry Budziak posted 08-10-2016 11:13


We all know Pokémon Go is a monster hit (pardon the pun). Two days after launch, it was downloaded on more phones than the dating app Tinder. More people were using it than Twitter. Users were on it longer each day than they were on Facebook. It’s the biggest mobile app game ever in the United States. How can your association use the Pokémon mania to its advantage? Or, rather, should it? 

A Go or No-Go? Consult Your Strategy

First, you must consider whether Pokémon Go—or any breakthrough technology—fits in with your association’s big-picture priorities, supporting structures and processes. You want to avoid attempting to adopt or embrace the latest technology craze unless it aligns with your organization’s overall strategy. That’s the key to great technology management—choosing which changes to absorb based on strategy.

If you decide Pokémon Go is a fit for your association, here are some ideas for customer engagement and brand awareness:

  • Consider holding your next event somewhere that features a Pokéstop (a place pre-loaded within the app where users can gather “battle supplies”)
  • Purchase a lure module to add to the Pokéstop of your next location to entice more players. Lures last for 30 minutes and cost about $1 each.
  • Brainstorm how to incorporate the game into your education or networking program, e.g., host meetups of different teams, create a competition to catch the highest-level Pokémon character over the duration of your event, or design a non-digital version of the game that’ll attract attendees to your exhibitors. Offer points and rewards for each activity.
  • Take advantage of your constituents’ increased knowledge of augmented reality apps and embed AR into your various multimedia, social media, and print resources.
  • Request to add your headquarters, chapter site or meeting venue as a Pokéstop or sponsor a location on a cost-per-visit basis (an offering that is in the works by Niantic, Pokémon Go’s developer).

Prepare for What’s Next

Pokémon Go is the hot, new craze—and we’ve discussed some ways to take advantage of it. But how can your organization prepare for the next waves of technology?

Start with a digital readiness assessment. Uncover the digital barriers for your organization’s progress by asking:

  • Are our existing products and services digitized?
  • Can we consider new digital marketing channels?
  • Can we analyze customer data?
  • Are our systems integrated?
  • Do we have policies and business practices to adapt to the changes digital will bring?
  • How much opportunity is there for the organization to gain a competitive advantage?
  • Do our employees have the necessary, relevant skill sets?
  • Do we have the right resources—budget, people, time?
  • What commitments have been made to the board?
  • Do we have a culture that supports innovation and change?

Technology is changing faster than organizations can absorb change. So you must rely on your strategy to choose what digital initiatives to embrace. Your strategy should be a collaborative, cross-team effort and data-driven. It should consist of a single, organized list of agreed-upon priorities and the technical requirement needs to accomplish each. Then you can determine process—the means and methods to effectively and efficiently deliver on the strategy.

Need help assessing your digital readiness or forming a digital strategy? Call upon .orgSource (www.orgsource.com), leaders in IT and digital strategies for more than 11 years.