Lab Weekly – Pokemon Go, Google PLA's and more…

Phoebe Skinner

Project Coordinator
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This week in the office has been pretty much work, work, work, doing what we do best. We caught up with Phoebe, our digital marketing assistant who seems to be having a very nice time over in Florida. We’ve told her to say a big hello to Mickey and Minnie when she sees them. In this lab weekly we discuss Pokemon Go which has been a hit with some people in the office, particularly one of our other marketing assistants, Ben. We also discuss Google’s new PLAs, Amazon Prime day, and Facebook Instant Articles.
Pokemon Go
The newly released Pokemon Go has become very popular amongst gamers and Pokemon fans. The game consists of augmented reality in where users can catch Pokemon from real life locations, the Pokemon can be found in various outdoor locations but can only be seen through the game using a smartphone. When the game was first released, although only available in a handful of countries such as the US, Australia, and New Zealand, had come to rival Twitter with the number of active users, already exceeding that of Tinder. Before the game was available in the UK through Apple App Store and Android equivalents, users were finding a way around this, by changing their account location some users were successful in downloading the game. Since then, the game has been available within the UK as of July 14th. Nintendo, the owners of Pokemon, have seen a $7.5 billion increase to their market value primarily down to this new game alone. Users on average are using the games for 43 minutes a day which is higher than Whatsapp, Snapchat, Instagram, and Messenger.
Pokemon Go has been praised by some for getting users more physically active and exploring their neighbourhoods in search of Pokemon. Users have been meeting up to go find these characters together and there was even a gathering of 2000 people in Australia to join together and catch Pokemon. However, not everyone shares this enthusiasm. Whereas the obvious dangers of walking while staring at your phone are more prominent than ever, there have been a few cases of more gruesome events such as one Pokemon Go user allegedly witnessing a murder and another finding a body both while in search of these digital Pokemon. With a game of this scale, it is expected for there to be some mishaps, as well as the situations experienced by some users, the game itself has been having a number of server issues. With the game still in its infancy, this will most likely be resolved after a few updates; the game is expected to grow in the near future.
Changes to Google PLAs
Google is changing how product listing ads run, making it easier for brands to get their product showing on broader non brand queries, since around 40% of product searcher are these broader queries. For advertisers using these Shopping campaigns, of non-brand items, it gives them more images and the ability for users to view their related products on a separate Google landing page. When someone makes a search, such as say black boots, a row of ads will show at the top of the search engine page much like it currently does, however, three product images will be shown for an advertiser. One main image and two smaller images at its side, all being related to the black boots query and all being from the same advertiser. When a user is interested and clicks on the ad, they will be taken to a Google landing page which will display a range of their products, it will also feature copy from the advertisers themselves. It is the products on this page that if clicked on, will charge the advertisers as the user will then be directed to the advertiser’s website. Along with these images, advertisers will be able to show a promotional message or how far the user is from their retail shop.
Amazon Prime Day
Amazon prime day has always been a successful day for the company and Amazon reported recently that the second Prime day was more successful than the first with sales 60 percent higher this year than in 2015. A few key facts about the day include:

  • Fire TV Stick was Amazon’s number one selling device
  • Over 1 million users used the Amazon app for the first time on Prime Day
  • Amazon Echo sales were up 2.5x as much as the previous record

Amazon has not yet released any specific sale reports.
Amazon first established Prime day in hopes to gain more subscriptions, since then it has become extremely popular globally for having some fantastic deals on the day. It is reported that Prime members spend twice as much as non-prime members and will potentially reach $75 billion sales on Amazon this year. Amazon Prime has on average 64 million members in the US alone, with many more throughout Europe.
Facebook Instant Articles
Facebook instant articles was a success which has made the company aware of a great opportunity of bringing the feature to more users and enhancing user experience by enabling instant articles in direct messenger. They announced this on July 14th and said they will begin with the feature on Android and then move to iPhone in the near future, an instant article is shown by a lightning bolt within the link which is shared to messenger (See image below).
Facebook Instant Articles
Facebook want to give users an instant experience and allow them to consume as much content as they can, this new feature will enable users to access articles almost 10 times faster than before. With the success of instant articles, it would be no surprise if Facebook brought them to all of their tools which allow people to share links.

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