What the Rise of Pokémon GO means to small businesses

It’s been a little over a week, but it’s already safe to say that Pokémon GO is a hit. Children, teens, and adults alike can be seen wandering a city near you, hunting down Pokémon in the revolutionary augmented reality game. In a somewhat ironic twist, the app has gamers everywhere doing something they’re entirely unaccustomed to doing: getting active. But that’s not the only surprising thing about the game’s meteoric rise. An interesting way to perceive the game’s potential is to consider it as presenting a massive marketing opportunity for small, local businesses around the country.

 

The ultimate objective of the game is to “catch ’em all,” as in capture every existing Pokémon breed. This hunt leads users all around their respective cities, as a Pokémon discovery can happen almost anywhere. Another critical aspect of the game is happening upon “gyms,” the locations of which tend to correspond with city landmarks. At these gyms, users can restock their “Poké Balls” and discover other resources needed to ensure successful hunting.

 

Pokémon GO “lure” module is ideal for marketers

Another tool one can employ in their quest for Pokémon is the “lure” module. To lure another user is to send out a visual signal that lasts for up to 30 minutes on nearby players’ maps. For marketers, this module is by far the most important. If a small business – say, a café – were to jump in on the game and purchase the lure module, they could attract nearby gamers to their location. Using clever signage like this, this café can attract users to take a break from their quest to enjoy a scone and a cup of coffee:

pokeshop

You don’t need to be a Pokémon expert – or even invest yourself in the game – to download the app and make creative signage like this. It’s relatively effortless, and employing this forward-thinking marketing tactic could yield measurable results. That said, this sort of marketing tactic couldn’t possibly work for a company like IBM, with offices worldwide and services not necessarily offered at the offices themselves.

 

This tactic is most beneficial for locations similar to a coffee shop or local retail store. It’s far easier for a small business to add a personal and charming marketing touch considering they understand the personality of their community and are able to produce marketing material tailored to their specific audience. For small businesses struggling to generate revenue, there’s no reason not to ride the coattails of this massive hit.

 

Nobody would look you in the face and tell you that this Pokémon GO explosion could help you get rich. But if you’re looking for a quick, creative, and easy way to increase revenue, you may as well take advantage of the marketing opportunities presented by the app’s meteoric rise.

 

 

James Mello
James is the Lead Author & Editor Product2Market of Blog. James writes for the Product2Market blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to Product Marketing.
James Mello on sabtwitterJames Mello on sablinkedinJames Mello on sabgoogleJames Mello on sabfacebook