A number of retailers are already taking advantage of the opportunities presented by Pokémon Go, and you can too.
Pokémon Go is spreading at unprecedented rates. Walter Chen at Inc.com reported that as Pokémon Go users traverse their towns in search of Pokémon, local stores, restaurants, movie theaters and other businesses are capitalizing on this massive opportunity, driving huge amounts of foot traffic and conversions both with simple in-app purchases and creative marketing campaigns.
Use these five Quick Tips as a starting point to expand your Pokémon Go knowledge and find out how to cash-in on the craze while it’s hot.
- Find out if you’re a PokeStop or (near) a Gym. PokeStops and Gyms are real world locations–and they draw foot traffic. PokeStops allow users to earn XP and get more Pokeballs and other in-game items. At Gyms, players can earn PokeCoins and XP by either defending or taking over their territory. Download the app (or ask a friend) and open it up while at or near your business (the game is dependent on physically being at a location), and you’ll easily be able to see if you’re a PokeStop or a Gym. PokeStops are identified by large light blue icons, Gyms are towering structures that will have red, yellow or blue accent colors.
- If your business is a PokeStop, use Lure Modules. A Lure Module is an in-app purchase that increases the rate of Pokémon generation in the area around the PokeStop for 30 minutes; the best part is that once a lure is activated, all game players are able to see that a Lure Module is active at a PokeStop and benefit from it. As a convenience store, consider using a Lure Module at your location to capitalize on increased foot traffic, as players are more likely to go to a nearby PokeStop with an active lure.
- Get the benefits of a Gym–without the sweat. Check to see if your business is close to a Gym; Gyms are usually larger landmarks and they draw in crowds of people day and night to face-off with other users and “take control” of the Gym for their team. Use this “free” traffic to your benefit by highlighting your products–especially water and quick snacks or other items that someone might want or need while out walking around for hours at a time.
- Promote Pokémon on Social Media. Use social media platforms to create Pokémon hype to draw additional traffic to your business. For example, offer an incentive for customers to bring in a photo of a Pokémon they caught at or near your business. Promoting on social media will be especially important if you’re using Lure Modules to help draw foot traffic. Be sure to use the hashtag #PokemonGO so players will notice your Tweets or Instagram posts! Sheetz has the right idea with these two twitter messages:
- Prominent signage is key. Properly place signage in your business to create Pokémon hype; if you decided to use Lure Modules regularly, make signs to promote the times that it’ll be active. Consider offering flash-sales during those periods. Strategically place signage outside to draw interest from players on their way to PokéStops and Gyms.
Don’t Stop Here–Prepare for the Future of AR
Convenience stores are at the front lines of capitalizing on the future of augmented reality. Augmented Reality (AR) is, as Augment.com reports, a technology enriching the real world with digital information and media.” Go to any park, zoo, museum or landmark and you will see people playing Pokémon Go. This is just the beginning of expanding family time, traveling and exploring new destinations. Convenience stores offer endless possibilities for these travelers; including fuel, beverages and foodservice. While Pokémon Go is perhaps the best example of AR in mainstream use, there’s definitely more ways to harness the technology. Convenience store owners or other small businesses may be interested in utilizing augmented reality to help customers navigate their stores and find sales, a technology that’s already been deployed in 14,000 locations through aisle411. Or consider working with a developer on how similar tech might work best for your location.
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