A Look Back on the Biggest Trend of 2016
From the archives: July 18, 2016
Last year Pokemon celebrated their 20th birthday, and this year they are showing that they will not be forgotten for future generations with the release of Pokemon Go. It has swept the nation, and Saturday launched globally. It has taken over our communities, our Facebook feeds, and our spare time. There was a time before Instagram, Amazon, and Steam when children rode their bikes or played at the community playground. Adults held more potlucks, and socialized in person and in the outdoors. There was a stronger sense of unity and you knew your neighbors. Pokemon has somehow recreated the phenomena by sweeping the nation with the game that forces you to the great outdoors again.
Whether you are for it or against it (and there is definitely a divide) there is no denying that Pokemon is creating a social change in our cities. The churches have new visitors, cemeteries have more walkers, and malls have more bodies than they have since before the economic decline in the early 2000’s. At night, wander downtown Huntsville, AL and find it hopping with Nasa Engineers, and Military Intelligence Contractors all excitedly discussing the nearby Pokemon, tricks of the trade, and the exciting new characters they have captured. So what does this mean for retailers?
Bodies equals potential customers; the key is strategy. Our local Pizzeria that is downtown offers a free Pizza for level 10 Pokemon gamers. A local coffee shop promises a lure for tips in the tip jar. The hardware shops says they have not witnessed so many customers and so much traffic in many many years, and as a result extended the hours of operations until the traffic from this fad fades. What sort of specials could you offer that may attract your Pokemon Go customers?
So Shopgirl wants to know: What sort of impact have you seen Pokemon Go have on your community and local brick and mortar? Wether socially or fiscally, how have you embraced it?