Certainly here in app-centric San Francisco, business owners don't want to be shown up by their East Coast brethren in the Pokémon Go customer-attraction race, right? Since the number of Pokemon Go users is basically exploding, and today's news blitz will only help that for the FOMO set, restaurant owners in major cities are likely seeing more customers wandering in and getting overly excited by people staring into their phones and catching a virtual creature, and subsequently buying something because they want to be polite, or they're just thirsty. Bon Appétit reports that savvy restaurant owners are already cashing in by purchasing "lure" modules that, for a period of time, attract ever rarer Pokémon to that location.
Atlanta-based digital agency Huge Atlanta's Derek Fridman tells BA that the company's retail coffeeshop has already attracted a bunch of new customers after he spent $49 to buy some virtual coins which he spent on a "lure."
Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia used Instagram earlier today, as shown above, to lure in lunch customers saying the place was just "swarming with Pokémon."
This is the same ploy that criminals were using to allegedly rob unknowing app users in St. Louis, but it's just innocent marketing when it's a business, right?
From outside the restaurant where we ate dinner tonight. There was a Pokestop next door with lure constantly active. pic.twitter.com/cfQ05yIdl8— Steve Lubitz (@WickedGood) July 11, 2016
(Date):— gavisaurus (@GavinWJV) July 8, 2016
Her: how about this restaurant?
Me: (checks Pokemon Go) how about the one like half a block from here?
Business Insider picks up on the trend without apparently realizing that business owners can actually control whether a PokéStop in or near their business becomes a magnet for rare and powerful Pokémon, by spending a little cash.
And Curbed SF has provided a handy map of where to find various Pokémon across the city which includes Brewcade (2200 Market Street), where you'll find Ponyta; the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park, where you'll find Exeggcute; and right outside Chambers Eat + Drink at 601 Eddy Street, where you'll find Clefable.
Will this fad last more than this week? We'll see.
Just be warned all ye dorks who don't normally get this much exercise: Pokémon Go excitement has been linked to sore legs and, like, physical activity.