Pokemon Go may look like a video game for children and slightly mentally challenged adults, but one cannot argue with the facts: a mere days after its launch it became the most viral app ever released, getting more than 15 million downloads during the first week, and considerably improved Nintendo's financial situation.

It has already turned into a new cultural phenomenon, with many businesses quickly finding ways to cash in on the craze, and others trying to understand what exactly stands behind the insane popularity and

1.Branding Is Everything

Few of those playing it know it, but Pokemon Go is built around Ingress, another location-based mobile game developed by the same studio - savvy users even recommend using Ingress maps for finding Pokemon Go's

Ingress has been around for three years, but have you ever heard about it? Probably not, unless you are very much into this kind of thing. Pokemon, however, is a brand that has been steadily developed for the last twenty years and is easily recognized even by those who never played any of its games or watched the anime.

2. There Is Interest towards Augmented Reality

The concept of AR has been around for a long time, and Pokemon Go is certainly not the first time is has been used in an app - yet up till now, general response towards it was lukewarm. Now it seems that consumers' disinterest in AR has been more of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

3. The Easier It Is to Learn, the Higher Its Retention Rate

Pokemon Go doesn't have any tutorials, manuals or instructions, but it simply underlines the fact that one can simply pick it up and start playing. The aforementioned Ingress is a much more complicated and, perhaps, more interesting game - but you have to invest considerable time into it to fully enjoy it.

4. Online Traffic Can Direct Real-World Traffic

Many small businesses have learned it almost immediately - by attracting attention to nearby

5. Real World Should Be Taken into Account

Pokemon Go drives millions of people around the world out of their homes and puts them on the move, which is probably a good thing, but some practices have already attracted more negatively tinged attention.

The game's peculiarity is that rare Pokemons appear only early in the morning or late at night, and some players have been known to put "catching them all" above their personal security. There have been reports of players getting mugged and hit by cars because they weren't paying attention to their surroundings - which certainly doesn't add to good publicity.

Pokemon Go is an excellent illustration of a simplistic, even primitive idea gaining enormous success simply because nobody before though something like this might be popular. No matter what you think about the game itself, we all have a lot to learn from it.

Published on: Jul 19, 2016
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.