Could Pokemon Go become Networking Go
Dozens of job search apps already exist, like Shapr, Linkedin, or Meetup, but they do not have the active users that would ensure the right person for the job is hired. They also lack the game-like or sheer nostalgia quality that would make users want to download them. This is not the case for Niantic Inc.’s Pokemon Go. Released last week, Pokemon Go already has more active users than Twitter and was installed on over 5% of Android devices. Users spend an average of more than 43 minutes on the app per day, more than Facebook Messenger, Instagram, or Snapchat. And if the number of users wasn’t proof enough of its popularity, the app has sent Nintendo’s stock up 40 percent.
While Pokemon’s popularity peaked in the late 1990’s, the new app has brought lovers of the cult show together in real life. Using the phone’s GPS capabilities, the app creates an augmented reality, sending users to different locations to “catch” or “fight” Pokemon. It’s not all fun and games, however. The app has already been used by robbers to find and target their victims (http://www.fox32chicago.com/news/dont-miss/172782352-story). In Massachusetts, a man’s home was marked by the app as a Pokemon “gym” where users can “train” to fight other Pokemon users, sending dozens of people to his home at all hours of the night (https://www.buzzfeed.com/stephaniemcneal/pokemon-go-house?utm_term=.dcZD… ).
Privacy and personal safety issues aside, this concept could easily expand to the job hunt. Instead of catching Pokemon, users could meet employers who have open positions or with networking prospects in the same field or with a similar career. The job hunting version of the app could designate locations based on the user’s industry or position or even on shared interests with the hiring manager.
Until that app is created, perhaps job-seeking Pokemon Go users should bring their resumes and work on their elevator pitches. This could also present a great opportunity for teens to meet older professionals, as the average age of Pokemon fans is in the late 20s.