If you own a business in a busy (downtown) area, it would seem wise to take advantage of the increased foot traffic now wandering by in search of a Bulbasaur.
In the first 10 days, this app has been covered non-stop by the media because it’s received more downloads than Tinder, more daily active users than Twitter. Pokemon Go has been declared more popular than porn. So yeah, it’s a thing. And like all things, businesses are looking for ways to milk it.
There are many great examples online showing how businesses are “luring” Pokemon Go players in. This isn’t going to be another one of those articles… there’s already enough of them!
Not surprisingly, another opportunity for your business to benefit from Pokemon Go will be available in the form of “sponsored retail locations“.
For those not following this craze, Pokemon Go is like geocaching but more fast paced and social. The simplest details that you need to know: “pokestops” are areas where players can collect items every 10 minutes, and drop a “lure” to attract more Pokemon (which, in turn, attracts more players) for 30 minutes. (You can use this to your advantage, if you have a pokestop nearby.)
Also, “gyms” are areas where players will “battle” to claim ownership for their team… and earn coins as long as they maintain ownership.
If you’re not lucky enough to be located near a pokestop or gym, then the ability to become a “sponsored retail location” could be a no-brainer for your business. (And you can already apply for consideration here.)
It could be a win-win situation…
Or, it could be a disaster.
Please don’t try jumping on a bandwagon blindly just because it’s there and all the cool kids are doing it. This should go without saying. Before you come up with a Pokemon Go related promotion, consider:
This game has drawn all ages, not just teens. Pay attention to the variety of people walking by your storefront, or stopping near to capture a pocket monster. You might be surprised who’s playing! You know who your best customer is… will they be drawn in with a Pokemon Go promotion.
What you offer that is valuable.
Providing refreshments or a “sit back and relax” environment (conveniently located within range of a gym or pokestop) can be an advantage to players.
Actually getting involved in the game.
For example, this bakery offered different pricing based on team colors. If you don’t “get the game”, ask someone who does play for help in creating an appealing promotion. That’s the difference between clever & valuable or clueless & tacky.
Even as someone who specializes in marketing and recognizes the potential… I’m also a fan of the game who would like it to stay a positive experience. Please and thank you.
Because in this last week, I have walked an average of 6 miles daily with my 2 boys. Because we have bonded. Because for the first time ever, my children are begging to go for a long walk after dinner, and multiple walks throughout the day, instead of sitting in front of the TV.
Because I’m a big fan of “exercise in disguise” and this game really nails it.
Because I’m also a fan of promotions that get their audience, and that can’t be faked!
TL;DR- Are you thinking about taking advantage of Pokemon Go for a business promotion? Play it first! Don’t bother drawing players in if you can’t engage with them. That’s tacky.