H&M Offers Virtual Goods Within Location-Based Game MyTown

Social iPhone game MyTown will now allow players to “check-in” to real-life stores and key areas near H&M stores to gain virtual clothing items and points. The game is a location-based style augmented reality game, where players are able to accumulate points by visiting real world locations with their iPhone and registering that they have visited. H&M, in partnership with appssavvy and MediaCom, have jumped on board to not only reward players who enter H&M, but to incentivize players who are near H&M by giving them special “Blue” clothing items as they approach the store.

Location-based games like Gowalla and MyTown have been succeeding on iPhone, and location based applications like Loopt and Whrrl are successful as well. MyTown specifically is growing at a rapid pace, having surpassed one million registered users and growing at a rate of more than 100,000 per week. The game succeeded in a big way because it focuses on the gameplay element as opposed to previous location-based applications, and you gain levels as you visit areas and attempt to own them.
H&M certainly targeted a niche market with this application, and it is much more than a standard marketing application. This is an exciting addition to a recently popular game, and based on the praise from H&M, I wouldn’t be surprised if more companies get involved with MyTown. “MyTown takes our marketing efforts a step further through new and unique technologies and avenues today’s consumer is engaging at skyrocketing rates,” said Steve Lubomski, H&M’s Marketing Director for North America. “Not only is this effort fresh and cutting-edge, but it reaches an elusive sub-set of our target group, a highly-engaged urban audience that are in and around our stores across the country.”
Looking at something like Yelp for iPhone, you’re able to search for local stores of any type and have them organized by rating, but in theory something like MyTown could play a part in this kind of activity as well. The fact that MyTown is a fun, exciting game means that I wouldn’t be surprised if stores saw the value in trying to get themselves promoted on MyTown just as much as they want to be on Yelp, because this is the kind of application people play when they’re idling, and that’s a good time to try and reach out to them as customers. Yelp is an application that’s most used when you have some specific shopping to do.