Six Similarities Between the Worlds of Pokémon Go and Digital Marketing

There are more than a few people in our office currently obsessing over the new Pokémon Go game, like most millennials with constant 90s nostalgia on the brain.  With a Poké Spot right across from our office, and Zubats and Clefairies flocking around the office, lunch breaks have now turned into walks around the neighborhood, trying to be the first one to capture that elusive Wigglytuff whose footprints we’ve seen floating around, but still haven’t been able to catch.


The author’s collection of Pokemon…so far.

Between desgiphyign intern Ross’s 175 Combat Power (CP) Rattata, copywriter Nikki’s 63CP Ponyta, and demand generation web developer Matt’s 105CP Pidgeotto, we’re cultivating quite the team of Pokémon (and draining our phone batteries and data plans as fast as we can). Along the way, we’ve found ourselves drawing some parallels between the augmented reality game and digital marketing – and some of them are kind of surprising.

1. Remember: it’s a journey.

It’s not all done in one day, or one step. Just like with Pokémon Go, you’re not going to become the very best – like no one ever was –at digital marketing in just one day. Ash Ketchum wandered around for years training Pokémon and fighting other trainers, and the GPS, walking-based Pokemon Go! might take you just as long. Careful planning, strategizing, and knowing your goals are all important factors in creating and completing your modern marketing journey.

2. You need to evolve and power up.

Just like evolving youe1ab1065d79f3065d3b7305d72e4d2cfr Pikachu into a Raichu, taking your marketing from 1.0 to 2.0  can be extremely rewarding. Not only can your Pokémon gain strength and new powers, but you can best people in battle at your local Pokémon gym. You don’t even need to evolve all the way in one big chunk – just powering up occasionally with new technologies, or an innovative strategy, can help you win the struggle in your marketing battle. A 12 CP Snorlax ain’t gonna do much, but a 939 CP Snorlax will crush all of its opponents (literally, Snorlaxes are the biggest Pokémon!)  Likewise, with your marketing strategy, even powering up just some of your 1.0 tactics to 2.0 tactics can make a huge difference. Try taking things in small steps, by using crawl, walk, run, rather than trying to evolve everything all at once.

3. Don’t be afraid to take advantage of things that will make your journey faster.

Marketing automation, CRM integration, a really great CMS platform, and predictive analytics can take your marketing from inefficient to productive. In Pokémon Go, you’re offered several special items to help you along in your quest – everything from potions to sprays to incense. These can help you heal and attract Pokémon to you, wherever you are.

4. Lures can be incredibly effective. 

Want to draw customers to you instead of seeking them out? Inbound marketing is a digital marketing technique that brings customers in through content marketing , rather than you having to go out and find them yourself through prospecting, a process known as outbound marketing. The same happens in Pokémon Go – instead of having to leave where you are, you can draw Pokémon to you, using both incense and lures. You get more quality Pokémon, faster, than you would just blindly walking around.

5. Don’t be afraid to repurpose what you already have. TQ8tMld

When playing Pokémon Go, you start to realize that the same Pokémon are popping up everywhere – You can’t walk ten feet without walking into yet another Pidgey or Rattata. As deceiving as having multiples of the same Pokémon can be, they’re actually really useful because you can trade them to Professor Oak for additional XP or candy to power up or evolve your other Pokémon of the same species. The same goes for repurposing your content. It might seem redundant to have a webinar, an eBook, a blog, and/or social posts all on the same topic – but really, it’s making use of what you already have to reach a wider audience.

6. Are you capturing what you need to?

Capturing data in marketing is important – You need to know what data points will be most useful in order to target and reach the audience you want. You also need to constantly be identifying new data capture opportunities to add depth to your information.  Clean, complete, well-managed data keeps your marketing running at optimal speed.

Likewise, capturi600px-151Mewng the right Pokémon is essential for building a strong team – You want to be able to fight a variety of Pokémon types (whether they are ones that fly, are psychic, are water, or are plant) efficiently and effectively.  You need to organize your Pokémon into optimal fighting lineup while ensuring their health is in good condition before you can even think about entering a battle.


Still waiting to locate the legendary Mew, so you’re taking a break from smartphone hunting to catch up on marketing tactics? Give Intelligent Demand  a call, and we’ll optimize your Pokédex and MarTech stack, so you can face anything that comes your way, whether it be a 990 CP Vulpix, or integrating your marketing automation instance with your CRM.

Lizzie Catalano

Author Lizzie Catalano

More posts by Lizzie Catalano

Lizzie is a Marketing Specialist who supports ID’s growth as a member of the MSBD team. The majority of her time is spent maintaining this very website, running ID’s social media and internal marketing, and setting up business development and sales meetings. If you fill out our contact form, she is very likely the first person you will talk to.

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