Pokemon Go didn’t just drive billions of dollars into Nintendo’s market value and help kids get off their butts and moving their legs as they wander around town looking to “get ‘em all” and capture Pokemon characters. Retailers are learning how to sell ‘em all too.
The augmented reality game from Japan’s Nintendo Co Ltd, has players walking around real-life neighborhoods and stores to hunt down virtual cartoon characters on their smartphone screens. According to reports, Pokemon GO has more than 65 million users in the United States just seven days after launch (that’s more than Twitter!).
The game is also helping local retailers attract new customers. L’inizio Pizza Bar in Long Island City in New York claims its sales jumped 75% over the weekend by activating a “lure module” feature that attracts virtual Pokemon characters to the store, thereby tempting in nearby players, according to a report in the New York Post. The store’s manager spent $10 to have a dozen Pokemon characters placed in the location.
A potential victim of Pokemon GO’s success? Groupon and Living Social, which regularly work with small businesses to drive traffic.
“With Pokemon GO, you are seeing it as bypassing a lot of digital (marketing) channels that the brick and mortar shops have been relying on for the past few years,” Christophe Jammet, director of social media and mobile at consultancy DDG in New York, told Reuters.