It defines us as humans and gives meaning to our lives: the sense of purpose is one of the driving forces behind our evolution as individuals. We search for dreams to make true and wishes to fulfill in the books we read, in the people we fall in love with or the careers we choose… We are programmed to embark on a neverending search of the next life-changing experience. Or, just as well, the rarest Pokémon out there.
In the past we used to search for purpose in our beliefs. In time, our gods have been dethroned, one after another, and replaced with our accomplishments – larger houses; more powerful or more beautiful cars… We want better anything. And yet, once we have everything, it proves not to be enough.
Having forgotten how to look up, we now turn our eyes to what’s right in front of us – most of the time, our faithful screens, which we increasingly rely on for our emotional needs.
Thus, purpose becomes an intricate part of the appeal of what was named, a month after its launch, the biggest mobile game in US ever: Augmented Reality app Pokémon GO made history with its 100 million downloads in less than 30 days post-release and the daily millions of dollars in revenue.
An instant success explained by many due to its mix of technology and the ‘90 popular culture icon, Pokémon GO has apparently managed to break all the rules of mobile app design and still become a global phenomenon.
In addition to the millions of people worldwide that, since July 6, have begun exploring the world in search for virtual pocket monsters, hundreds of Pokémon-starring headlines were written.
Brands and marketers quickly started their own hunts for very real benefits, designing campaigns and marketing stunts. Business initiatives also appeared overnight, along with Pokémon egg walkers or guided city tours in Reykjavik, designed for tourists to catch the elusive creatures while (also) visiting the capital of Iceland.
The hunt for Pokémon has become a new purpose for people on every coordinate – a challenge powerfully anchored in a world of wonder, overlayed on our very own, prosaic one. – Cristi MIHAI, Managing Partner, STRATEGAD.