Pokémon Go has sent the entire world into a frenzy, quickly becoming one of the most viral mobile applications of all time. But of course, with every good platform is a host of opportunities for businesses to cash in. In an interview with the Financial Times, Niantic (Pokémon Go’s developers) CEO John Hanke said that “sponsored locations” will provide a new revenue stream for the company, in addition to in-app purchases of power-ups and virtual items.
This means that companies and businesses will be able to pay Niantic to feature their location on Pokémon Go‘s app, in hopes of driving customers inside. Advertisers will be charged on a “cost per visit” basis, similar to the “cost per click” used in online advertising. The model will be based on Niantic’s previous game Ingress, where brands and companies paid to have virtual portals mapped to on-street locations. This can prove to be very lucrative for business owners, as the owner of L’Inizio Pizza Bar in Long Island City, Queens, told The New York Post, “The amount of people has been astonishing.” The restaurant saw a business increase of 75 percent after buying a $10 USD in-game power-up that lured Pokémon to its location.