Whether you’re a gamer or not, you’ve likely seen countless references to Pokémon Go plastered all over social media. Your friends probably play by now, and hey, maybe even you’ve picked up this suddenly insanely popular hobby yourself. And as you’ve gathered, you’re not alone.
Pokémon Go is the new app that has been installed on more smartphones than Tinder, has more daily active users than Twitter (see how long that lasts), and boasts more user engagement than Instagram or Snapchat. Simply put, this app is a business owner’s dream right now, and here’s how you can benefit from it.
Some lucky business owners have discovered that their building is actually a Gym or Pokéstop in the game. This means Pokémon Go users see the location on their in-game map and have to go to it in order to get rewards. For example, Pokéstops are appealing to people because they attract Pokémon, while Gyms are where players can battle others in the game.
For obvious reasons, this is good news for any nearby businesses hoping to get more foot traffic. Note that right now, you cannot make your business become a gym or Pokéstop in the game, so it’s sheer luck if yours ends up being one. All you can do is take advantage of it if that’s the case.
So is your business a Pokéstop or a Gym? Well, one way to find out is to simply be observant. Are groups of people – particularly those in the younger crowd – suddenly showing up in front of your business with their smartphone in front of their face? More than usual, anyway? Sure, there’s a chance it’s because a new Snapchat filter was released, but if they’re rushing toward a seemingly invisible figure and shouting “Gotcha!” you might be near a Pokéstop. If you haven’t noticed such activity, you can always double check by downloading the app to see all the nearby Pokéstops and Gyms yourself. You know you’re curious!
If your business is at or near a Pokéstop, you’ll likely see some extra traffic and sell more than usual. But you can also take matters into your own hands by buying a Lure Module. What is this and why would you spend money on it? A Lure can attract Pokémon to any Pokéstop for a half hour, thus also attracting people who play Pokémon Go.
So if you want a way to possibly increase your sales for the next half hour, download the game and pay $.99 for a Lure. It’s even cheaper per Lure if you opt to buy several at once. Try it out once and see if it makes a difference for your business, and if it does, it may be time to invest more than a dollar in your local marketing campaign.
If you’re more than a few blocks from any of these cool locations, don’t lose hope on the idea of your business benefitting from Pokémon Go. You can still find out where the closest gathering spots are for this game and head there with some of your products.
For example, if you operate a food truck, the best place to hang out is a Pokéstop or Gym. After all, running around looking for Pokémon is hard work that requires energy in the form of food and drinks. Even if you’re not in the food industry, you can grab some of your most popular products and set up a spot within feet of all the kids and adults wandering around on their phones. Put up some signs that tie together Pokémon Go and your products, and you’ll have their attention – and maybe some sales!
If you want to grab the attention of people who play this game, you need to show that you’re into it. The easiest way to do this is to mention it on social media. You can simply ask who plays, how their progress on the game is going, and where the local Pokéstops and Gyms are. Put up screenshots or fun videos of people playing the game, or articles that Pokémon Go players would be interested in.
You can also create specials around the game and market them on your website and social channels. Depending on what you normally sell, consider making custom shirts or badges that feature Pokémon Go-related images and phrases, or maybe create a themed drink that appeals to Pokémon Go players. Whatever you decide on, make sure you spread the word where local Pokémon fans will see it – whether online or at Pokéstops and Gyms.
Have you started playing Pokémon Go yet? And do you plan to use it for business purposes?