Free Ways to Use Pokémon GO to Increase Business

No PokéStop? No problem. All you need is your smartphone and a bit of creativity.

learn more about Caitlin Kullberg

By Caitlin Kullberg • Aug 15, 2016

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Pokémon GO has taken the country by storm, and businesses are abuzz with the use of Lure Modules as a paid -- though totally inexpensive -- way to draw new customers in via nearby PokéStops. If you don't have a PokéStop conveniently located right next door to your location, how can you utilize Pokémon GO to boost business? Here are a few tactics that don't require any in-app purchases.

Related: 21 Pokémon GO Marketing Tactics You Have to Try

1. Trendy social content.

When a Pokémon wanders into your area, snap some screenshots using the built-in camera tool. The rarer the Pokémon, the better! Even without a Gym or PokéStop within range, the Pokémon always are roaming. Post your photo on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram for content that's topical, sharable, and free.

When Meowth checks out your pet store!

Refresh the players.

If you run a restaurant or bar, you've got what these Pokémon GO crazed players need: sustenance. The game inspires people to walk around way more than they normally do, which means they probably need to fuel up. Use a sandwich board to let them know you're there for them. "Chasing Pokémon making you thirsty? Grab an ice-cold lemonade for your hunt!"

Related: 3 Big Ways Instagram is Changing Restaurants

Don't forget their phones.

Man, does this game drain your battery. Even with "battery-saving mode" activated in Settings, users on the prowl all day are bound to need a charge. If you've got accessible outlets, offer them up to customers who play.

Sponsor giveaways.

Incentivize people to share. Whether they're existing customers who play or Pokémon GO players who found their way to you, they're much more likely to tweet about you and your Pokémon population if they might get something out of it.

Related: How Entrepreneurs Are Cashing In on Pokémon GO

Pick a team.

Players who reach Level 5 can enter and battle at Gyms. The first time you do this, you're instructed to pick a team: Team Mystic (blue), Team Instinct (yellow) or Team Valor (red). Feel free to choose sides and reward customers on "your" team. Try to make natural connections between your brand and your team's attributes. For example, an electrical company could side with Team Instinct, led by Spark and represented by the Pokémon Zapdos (electrical type). "Level up" your marketing game by offering discounts to players on your team. Because players can't switch teams once they choose, you won't have to worry about people switching just to snag your discount.

Image credit: Pokémon GO

The possibilities are endless

Caitlin Kullberg

Growth Marketer, Alignable

Caitlin Kullberg is a Growth Marketer at Alignable, a Boston-based social network for local business owners to connect. She’s a graduate of Northeastern University from the D'Amore-McKim School of Business. Caitlin is passionate about small business marketing and strengthening communities.

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