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How Pokémon GO might be toxic for your business

3 reasons why you probably should avoid pouncing on the frenzy
By Diana Mitchell |



Topping 15 million downloads on Apple’s App Store and Google Play less than two weeks after its launch, users are downloading the game and using it. According to iOS usage data, users spend an average of 33 minutes a day playing the game – 50 percent more time per day than users spend on Facebook. The app is making US$ 1.6 million daily from in-app purchases in the US alone.



Sound marketing judgment would suggest your business should immediately pounce on the opportunities this app offers, right?




By all means, play the game, and have fun, but most businesses should ignore the app in its marketing strategies – at least for now.


Marketing distractions, like Pokémon GO, are toxic for your business.


Every few months we are bombarded with the next big thing in social media and marketing. While some of those big things turn out to be game changers, many are eventually dismantled, sold or forgotten.


Shiny new marketing toys are low-hanging fruit for businesses struggling to stand out from the competition. If you have a rock-solid marketing strategy with dedicated resources, or a team working on implementing that strategy, you can and should consider new social media or marketing trends for your business.


For most businesses, though, focusing your attention and efforts on the low-hanging fruit can be costly in the long run.



1. Marketing headline grabbers can’t replace a sound strategy.

Regardless of your business size, a marketing strategy is essential to the short and long-term success of your organization. Defining your ideal customer and laying out a plan to reach and engage them is critical to building strong customer relationships. This is especially true in today’s landscape, where it is increasingly difficult to stand out.


As entrepreneurs get lost in the day-to-day tasks and routines that drive successful businesses, a marketing strategy helps you keep an eye on the big picture. While defining a road map for your business success, your marketing strategy will also serve as a guide to measure core initiatives like sales success, customer retention, recruiting and product development.


Jumping from one hot new trend to the next can be an exhausting and expensive way to replace the work and effort needed to design and implement a sound marketing strategy.




2. Distractions keep you from mission-critical marketing tasks.

When we spend too much time jumping on the latest trends, the foundations of solid marketing can be cast by the wayside. Even an initial surge in business, from headline grabbers like Pokémon GO, is unlikely to replace the long-term success you would receive from an ongoing investment in content marketing.


Reallocating your resources away from fundamentals can cost you significantly in the long run. Once the shiny new object syndrome of Pokémon GO fades, those who continued to invest in content marketing in the long-term will have the SEO, trust and conversion benefits associated with solid content marketing. Social media expert Gary Vaynerchuk implores small businesses to especially avoid distractions and focus on content.


Looking beyond content, distractions and moving your marketing investment toward a marketing headline grabber could keep you from investing in a new website, which is designed to help convert the engaged traffic coming through your content strategy into leads. See where I’m headed with this?




3. Your customers are distracted by Pokémon GO too.

It’s too early in the game to see convincing data regarding the effect of Pokémon GO on business sales. However, looking at the habits of the game can provide some indication of how it could impact your business.


When users catch a Pokémon, they’re likely moving on to the next place to catch the next one. So while you may see a brief influx of traffic for your brick-and-mortar location, the jury is still out as to whether that traffic is going to stick around or be distracted enough by the game that brought them to you that they’ll want to move on quickly.


Once you’ve got your business on a stronger footing with a sound marketing strategy and a consistent effort, testing the waters with the latest marketing fads could result in the occasional home run (or the occasional strikeout). In the meantime, focus on mastering marketing essentials and avoid distractions. It is the formula for long-term success.







Copyright © 2016 Entrepreneur Media, Inc. All rights reserved. 

This article originally appeared on Minor edits have been done by

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