Once a playground favourite, Pokemon has enjoyed a massive revival this year, with the augmented game app Pokemon Go. Despite only being released in early July, you will have had a hard time escaping its existence. This phenomenon could actually present some benefits to your business. The whole game is geography based and gets users out and about and potentially walking towards your business. Here’s how to harness the power of Pokemon Go for business purposes… without breaking the bank. Intrigued?
Pokestops vs. Gyms
These are the two fixed locations within the game that attract users. Pokestops are places of interest where players can visit to collect more Pokeballs and potions (don’t ask). If you want to find out what’s near your business, visit the Pokemon Go Map. It has currently mapped 3.5 million different Pokestop and Gym locations and is being added to all the time by users of the app. Our local gym is at the Leatherhead Train Station and our nearest Pokestop is the church down the road – handy to know, if we’re missing staff members 😉
For a small outlay you could attract many people to your business. Lures attract ‘wild Pokemon’ to your area, which of course attracts players trying to catch them. Combining this with specific deals for players is a great way of increasing footfall to retail outlets during quiet periods, for instance.
Purchasing & Setting Lures to Attract Customers
To Purchase Lures:
- Open the Pokemon Go app
- Catch your first Pokemon and you’ll get a red Pokeball
- Tap the red Pokeball at the bottom of the screen and hit “Shop”
- Scroll down and buy a pack of Pokecoins (the apps currency)
- Once you have Pokecoins use them to buy a Lure Module
Setting a Lure:
Get close enough to your target PokeStop to access it. Inaccessible PokeStops will be square blue blocks; accessible stops will resemble targets.
Deploy a Lure:
To deploy a lure click the PokeStop, then click the white oval, and select the lure module on the next screen. Once the lure is deployed, the PokeStop will rain pink confetti to attract Pokemon.
Pokemon Players Welcome Here
Simply putting a sign outside that welcomes players of Pokemon Go will attract footfall. But adding some imagery to business cards, banners, special offers on leaflets etc etc. will show that you are embracing the app and the culture. Be sure to include your involvement and local interest points in your social media posts. Encourage people to post pictures of pokemon they’ve caught nearby and tag your business – you can even offer them a discount or voucher code to use in-store or online as a reward.
Can You Request Your Business Become a Pokestop?
If you’re not lucky enough to have a Pokestop or Gym near you, sadly the company behind Pokemon Go are no longer taking requests for new Pokestops/gyms. One of the biggest complaints to the game-makers is the lack of Pokestops or Gyms in rural areas, making gameplay pretty dull! You can only imagine how many requests there have been globally for this. It won’t be long until businesses are able to buy stops.
So What’s The Future of Pokemon Go?
After the initial flurry of action – a combination of the lovely summer weather and the novelty of such a game – Pokemon Go is making fewer headlines these days. We may hear more from the makers of Pokemon Go with regards to paid advertising for companies, we may not. Augmented Reality gaming is not a new phenomenon, but to keep Pokemon Going the makers are going to have to add new layers to the game play – creating more collaboration and layering of objects. We’ve already heard that there will be no Harry Potter version of this (possibly vetoed by governments worried about the loss of working hours… let’s face it – that’s a game that would never get boring!).
Augmented reality is an interesting development and whilst this technology has been around for some time, Pokemon Go has really brought it into the mainstream. Expect many knock-offs of the game, some good some bad. And next time round catch yourself the equivalent of a Pokestop/Gym while you can!