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Disney Is Launching a ‘Star Wars’ Treasure Hunt to Lure Fans to Stores

August 24, 2017, 12:59 PM UTC

What does it take to generate excitement at physical retail stores these days? Disney thinks a weeks-long treasure hunt in augmented reality across 30 countries should do the trick.

As part of a push to get fans into stores to buy merchandise tied to the latest Star Wars movie installment The Last Jedi, Disney is creating a treasure hunt across 20,000 stores in 30 countries, according to a release on the “Star Wars” website.

On September 1, participating stores, including Best Buy, Apple, Kohl’s and Petco, will unveil displays that visitors can scan using a purpose-built smartphone app. A scan reveals life-size characters from the film in augmented reality, visible through the phone’s camera. Users will be able to take photos or videos of the characters and share them on social media; doing so will qualify them for a sweepstakes for tickets to The Last Jedi premiere.

Disney and Star Wars launch a “Find the Force” event to mark the release of merchandise inspired by the latest film, “The Last Jedi.”Disney
Disney

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Depending on the store’s size, up to five different displays will be available. Each one will reveal a different character each day of the promotion, with the goal of luring players back for repeat visits. As online shopping continues to grow, this promotion is part of an effort to draw fans into stores and buy merchandise. The concept is similar to last year’s hit game Pokemon Go and aimed at drumming up anticipation for the movie, selling The Last Jedi merchandise, and attracting new fans—especially young, tech-obsessed ones—to the Star Wars franchise.

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The campaign, called “Find the Force,” will be available in participating stores starting September 1 and will remain available in some stores through the theatrical release of The Last Jedi in December.