There are already reports of businesses seeing higher foot traffic and sales.
Perhaps you’ve heard of Pokemon Go, a newly released mobile game that has since become the most popular app download of all-time, as Small Biz Trends writes. Or perhaps you haven’t heard of it – and that would be OK, because you’re definitely not alone. The only thing you really need to know is that you can use it to bring more customers into your eyewear shop, if you’re willing to play along for a bit.
Per the article, here’s the game in a nutshell:
“When playing the game, you look constantly at your screen and Pokemon will appear on it as if they’re right there in front of you in real life. The app uses your phone’s camera and gyroscope, among other technologies, to show images of Pokemon in front of you superimposed over the real landscape seen through your phone. It’s your goal to capture these Pokemon, collect them, and then come together with other Trainers to do battle against other factions within the game.”
So how in the world can you get people chasing Pokemon to wander into your store?
In the game, the article explains, there are these places called PokeStops – where the Pokemon chasers can get items to help them along in their journey – and Pokemon Gyms – where the battles take place. These PokeStops and Pokemon Gyms are typically located in public spots like libraries, train stations, fountains, lakes, etc., and not usually at individual businesses. However, “your business’s proximity to a PokeStop could be a boon to you. … There are already scads of reports of businesses near PokeStops seeing an increase in foot traffic and sales.”
If your shop is near a PokeStop, you can take advantage of this by considering the article’s recommendation of downloading the app and casting something called a Pokemon Lure: “By casting a Pokemon Lure ($1.99 per through in-app purchase) near a PokeStop, you’ve suddenly become a front for Pokemon for the next 30 minutes. If the game is as popular in your community as it seems to be just about everywhere, expect people to come near your lure looking to catch some Pokemon.”
This probably seems like an extremely niche form of social marketing, but considering the app’s popularity and the potential for similar apps to change how people engage with their local small businesses, there are probably worse ways you could spend $2 from your marketing budget. And if it doesn’t work, at least you’ll know what Pokemon is.