Gotta Catch 'em All
“It’s over 100 degrees. It’s high humidity. To see people out doing this during the day is just awesome.”
The restaurant decided to capitalize by dropping lures during its happy hour Wednesday night. Macejewski says the business doesn’t do much digital advertising, but she’s now a bit more intrigued by the potential.
A New Way to Market
Mobile advertisers are finding that the most meaningful way to connect with phone users is to take advantage of location tracking to offer in-the-moment deals and alerts specific to wherever they happen to be. Pokémon Go achieves all that while giving people an addicting game to play along the way – at least until players tire of their Pokémon and move on to something else.
Many enterprising restaurants, shops and bars across the country that have found themselves home to one of the game’s hubs are using features available for purchase within the app to coax the digital creatures onto their premises, thus luring the smartphone absorbed trappers in pursuit of them.
One New York pizzeria told the New York Post that $10 worth of lure modules was enough to drive a 75% boost in foot traffic.
Those lucky enough to have a training gym or “Pokéstop” – a waypoint where players can stock up on much-needed items – serendipitously placed nearby are also putting out advertisements and promotions aimed at drawing players to it. Those that aren’t lucky enough could soon pay for the opportunity.
These businesses are hoping, of course, that one or two of the game’s players might be distracted for a mid-hunt snack or a shopping break.The augmented reality app is the rare viral phenomenon to spill from people’s screens into the real world, and brick-and-mortar stores that don’t often benefit from such digital trends are reaping rewards in the form of increased foot traffic.
In the midst of peak Pokémon fever, it’s perhaps the most cost-effective way for businesses to advertise to a younger audience at the moment, especially when paired with real-time advertising and special offers.
Eventually, the company behind the app, Niantic Labs, plans to offer “sponsored locations” for sale, as it did with an earlier game called Ingress. A few internet sleuths have even found evidence in the game’s code that indicates the company may be pursuing a partnership with McDonald’s.
Until that happens, businesses are finding makeshift ways to cash in on the action. An in-app item called a “lure module,” for instance, allows its holder to better attract the creatures to a specific location. At a cost of just 99 cents, they’re a steal as far as advertising rates go.