Why we’ve still gotta catch ’em all!

Everyone has a special connection to their childhood. Even though we are completely aware of how uncool our childhood loves were, we will always have a special place in our hearts for those bands we were infatuated with, the games which we played before Facebook took over our lives and the entertainment franchises which played pivotal moments in our childhood. Enter PokemonGo!

pokemon go

It has actually been a big month for nostalgia. In movie theatres alone, way too many adults have just recovered from watching Finding Dory – the sequel to our favourite movie about a lost fish from thirteen years ago – in time to see an all-female reboot of Ghostbusters and a live-action retelling of Tarzan. But nostalgia marketing is also the powerful force behind the addictive new smartphone game PokemonGo.

For many 20-somethings, Pokemon was a huge part of their childhood. There was the television show. There were the trading cards. There was the pretty successful movie franchise. McDonald’s toys. Pokemon accessories. Clothing lines. Pencil Cases. Tazos. If you didn’t like Pokemon, the world would have been a pretty traumatic place.

Yet, alas, we all grew out of the entertainment conglomerate . . . but it still held a very special place in many people’s hearts. The same number of people who have been reliving their childhood through their phones this week catching Pokemon all around the world!

But why is it so addictive?

We all think of our childhood as a happy time. Before we had any cares in the world, everything was done for us and the only thing we had to worry about was missing our favourite television show. When we get the opportunity to revisit a brand, franchise or experience from our childhood, we immediately transfer these happy memories onto the experience. As a result, we are not only getting the satisfaction from playing another iPhone game, we are also associating the happy memories from our childhood with this game to create an unbeatable level of satisfaction. It essentially allows us to be taken back to our childhood again!

And, unfortunately for many new entertainment brands, this level of satisfaction can only be built up over many decades of work. While that may mean that you can’t expect your customer to resonate this strongly with your new brand . . . it does mean that you have plenty of time to catch ‘em all in the meantime!