Is there anything better than a Sunday spent in IKEA? Walking the endless aisles, not needing to buy anything but knowing you will leave with a trolley full of wonders. IKEA is a playground for adults. Somewhere to spend that small bit of extra cash, we work so hard for and end up wasting on something we don´t need. It appears that recently, it has become a veritable playground as people have started to use the large IKEA stores as arenas for epic games of Hide and Seek.
Can you remember the last time you played Hide and Seek? The worst games are when there are three right places to hide, and everyone knows it. You are either up the tree, under the car, or in the boiler room, there is nowhere else. So when you find somewhere with an abundance of incredible places to hide, you have to act.
That is just what people around Europe have started to do in IKEA as they realize the endless nooks and crannies that the store offers are perfect hiding places for all. These games, however, have started to become so popular that IKEA has now banned them, as they impact customer safety.
Looking at some Facebook planned events, you can understand why. Attendances were set to be as high as 30,000 for some events and would, in reality, be nothing like a game of Hide and Seek but like a stampede on unsuspecting customers. The store did what they felt was needed to keep customers safe. Still today, you can come across the occasional game of Hide and Seek being organized on the social media site, but IKEA are generally wise to it. Often organizing more security on the days in question.
However, did IKEA do the right thing? It appears they were given the golden goose of marketing opportunities and turned their back on it. In Belgium in 2014, IKEA did see that a game of Hide and Seek was being organized and tried to leverage it for their own gain, making it an official game. It must not have gone well as the ban came soon after. Surely this was just a bad starting point and the company should try again. If they could organize yearly hide and seek tournaments in all their stores around the world it would be the marketing win of the year. Please IKEA if not for your customers, do it for the future of your business! I swear I will buy a needlessly complicated table if you just let me play once!