Employee Comms

Pokémon Go and interactivity


 — August 15th, 2016

Pokémon Go and interactivity

A fusion of old and new technology

Who doesn’t love new, shiny things? But the number of truly ‘new’ things in life is limited. Most ideas build upon a previous iteration. They take what has worked before and develop it through the lens of modern advances. Pokémon Go is no different.

Let’s go back to a simpler time… a time when Nintendo’s Game Boy was the console of choice and the phrase ‘You’ve got mail’ brought excitement to email account holders.

The Old: Pokémon and Electronic Mail

Pokémon was launched in the mid 90s and quickly gained a large and adoring fan-base. The device of choice was typically the Game Boy (ah, the Game Boy!). This was a time when Sonic the Hedgehog, Super Mario and Street Fighter were the biggest names in gaming, a time when Sony’s PlayStation had yet to develop the market position it enjoys today. Pokémon enjoyed incredible success with its 1st generation of games: Pokémon Red and Blue (Green in Japan) and the later release of the enhanced Pokémon Yellow, selling almost 50 million units. It was so successful that it spawned a wide range of merchandise and a popular cartoon series.

However, as gaming made advances, Pokémon did not and saw its popularity steadily decreased.

Just like Pokémon Electronic mail gained popularity and became widely accessible in the mid 90s. Email pre-dates Pokémon and can be traced as far back as 1941. A man by the name of Ray Tomlinson developed a program for ARPANET (the precursor to Internet) that allowed text communications to be sent from one source to another.

Email gained momentum through the 80s and 90s when Hotmail and Yahoo embedded themselves as household names across the globe.

As a channel, email has often been declared as irrelevant and outdated in recent years as bright shiny tools become available. Many people lamented the sheer volume of email, the prevalence of spam and the static nature of emails. But just like a Pokémon, email has evolved and now both are enjoying a resurgence.

The New: The move to interactivity

Pokémon GO began Beta testing in early 2016 and was officially launched in June 2016. It combines the best of old Pokémon (with the original 150 characters) with some the best of modern technology, including Augmented Reality (AR) and GPS-based geo-tagging.

Since its release, Nintendo’s share price has doubled. And although Pokémon Go is actually owned by Niantic not Nintendo, it has most definitely revived the Pokémon franchise.

Likewise, email has moved on to be more interactive. Tools like Newsweaver Internal Connect have added an array of features to improve the channel experience and boost audience engagement. Emails can now contain images, videos, social features (likes, comments. ratings), dynamic content and interactive surveys. While some commentators continue to declare email as antiquated, a recent study showed that internal communicators see email as being the channel-of-choice to communicate important employee updates. In fact, it is seen as twice as effective as the next most effective channel (intranet).

Not only has there been advances in how an email can be designed and published, but there have been huge strides in what happens thereafter. Once an email has been sent, communicators can see how many people opened it, who opened it, what (if anything) they clicked on, what device they opened the email on, the list goes on.

The advances in email over the last decade have seen it move from a static, flat medium to a personalized and interactive communication essential to businesses.

For more on adding interactivity to your internal email communications download this free best practice guide.

I couldn’t finish a blog on Pokémon GO without adding at least 1 tip. I’ll be posting a part 2 of this article with more tips next week:

For those playing Pokémon Go, here’s a Poketip!

Count your lucky eggs!

Use your lucky eggs wisely. Lucky eggs double the experience you gain for 30 minutes making them key for leveling up quickly. Once you reach level 10, the majority of your experience points come from evolving Pokémon. To level up as fast as possible stock up on pidgeys, weedles and caterpie and anything else that needs just 12 or 25 candies to evolve. I suggest these Pokémon as regardless of the candy’s used in evolving a Pokémon you get 500 experience.

Example - You get 3 candies every time you catch a Pokémon (we’ll say weedle) and then an addition candy when this Pokémon is transferred i.e. catching 20 weedles = 60 candies = 5 evolutions of weedle = 5000xp with your lucky egg. Once you have enough candy to evolve about 80 Pokémon use your lucky egg and start evolving. Evolving Pokémon takes about 20 - 30 seconds so the maximum you can evolve in 30 minutes is somewhere between 60 - 90.

**Cheat: If you think that your lucky egg will run out before you finish your mass evolving you can go into your time settings on your phone and reset the time to just after you used the lucky egg and the time remaining will adjust accordingly. Note: if you change the time by more than the 30 minutes the game will realize what you've done and remove your lucky egg.

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