3 Surprising Digital Lessons from Pokémon Go

Mobile, Trends, Web Design, Web Development
Augmented Reality, Pokemon Go, web design
29 July 2016

Pokémon Go only launched a few weeks ago, but it has already implicated interesting health benefits reported by users and generated new ideas on how to piggy back off the craze to market businesses in the real world.


The soaring popularity of the app suggests that users have adopted augmented reality without skipping a beat. While virtual reality tools such as Google Card and Oculus Rift have slowly leveraged the technology, they require additional paraphernalia to allow users to engage in these worlds. Pokémon Go utilises the device in almost everyone’s pocket.


So what does this mean for the future of web design?

 1.    Storytelling

Storytelling has been touted as one of the key digital marketing trends of 2016, and for good reason. One of the best, proven ways to motivate and persuade is through the use of compelling stories that merge an idea with an emotion.


When you tell a story that invokes a user’s imagination and emotion, it raises their energy levels and lets them invest in your message. If a user is invested in your message, you have a greater chance of persuading them to purchase your product or believe in your brand.


Pokémon Go utilises the storytelling aspect of gameplay to ensure users are emotionally invested in the app. Catching them all, and being the best Pokémon trainer in the VR world keeps users coming back and gives a purpose to the game.

The same can be said about designing websites around a story. Taking traditional web design away from the classic page structure and creating a design that interacts with the story being told not only engages the user with your message in a memorable way, but it better utilises the plasticity of digital technology.

3 Surprising Digital Lessons from Pokémon Go - Read now on JTB Studios Insights

 2.    Design websites with user rewards in mind

Goal-based user experiences that reward engagement affect users on a cognitive level through positive reinforcement.


Pokémon Go has already shown signs of helping users’ mental health, which we suggest is due to the psychological rewards system imbued by playing the game.


Website rewards include guiding the user through easy-win modules of the website to both tell your story and provide psychological wins. Asking the user to interact with the site in minor ways, such as dragging an icon to progress to the following page, both generate psychological rewards and change the user from a passive recipient of information to an active and engaged participant in your site.


 3.    Design mobile with augmented reality

Ensuring your site is mobile optimised is vital for a number of reasons – primarily search results. Some figures state that 80% of users access the Internet via mobile devices. With such a high number of users accessing your site via mobile, it makes sense to integrate augmented reality into mobile web design as a point of difference. This feature ties in well with storytelling and rewards-based web design and has huge possibilities for real-time marketing applications.


The future of digital is an interesting space, and it will be interesting to see the technological advancements that will come from the success of Pokémon Go.


Jess Kumanovski, JTB Studios Account Manager
JTB Studios, Digital Agency Melbourne


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