Since the release of PokémonGo, there has been an influx of coverage in what many local business and retail centres are doing to capitalize on this increasingly popular game developed by Niantic and The Pokémon Company.
The premise behind this game is to mimic the story and concept of the Pokémon franchise which is aptly summarized in the famous catch phrase, “Gotta catch ‘em all!”. The mobile application encourages users to go out and explore their communities, neighbourhoods and interesting locales to search for Pokéstops (locations that are destinations for new in-game items), Gyms (Places for players to interact with each other) and to use the game to find Pokémon in the wild (meaning in all sorts of random geographic locations).
Source: Wikipedia Commons
Just a casual observation of your local neighbourhood will show large upticks in the number of people exploring and spending time in many of your local hot spots. In Toronto alone, I’ve seen a larger number of groups all using their phones to hunt for and find Pokémon and Pokéstops. Landmarks such as the CN Tower have been inundated with people gathering and spending time. Most importantly, the app is getting people to get out of the house into their communities. Even the most casual search online will pop up dozens of articles showing the interesting and unique ways many business owners have decided to capitalize on this craze. Below are a few of the more interesting articles I found on this topic:
As always with retail, footfall and draw is going to ensure higher sales. Leveraging location based applications and games is going to continue increasing in prominence almost ensuring higher sales volumes, popularity and footfall. This will continue to be a relevant marketing and popular strategy for any retailers and centre owners that take part. While the long term benefits of the app are yet to be seen, I am sure that the centres/retailers best able to leverage this unique application will be sure to benefit their brand and bottom line.