Is there a way I can get my workplace to become a Pokemon Go Gym?
July 11, 2016 1:13 PM   Subscribe

I am not too familiar with the game, but I understand the gym concept. I work at a local business and would like it to become a Pokemon Go Gym so we can attract more customers, but it doesn't seem like this is doable. Am I missing something? Is there anything similar we can do? Niantic's website is very spare.
posted by Slinga to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (11 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
All the "gyms" and otherwise-marked locations/portals I've seen are artistic monuments of some sort: plaques, parks, statues, water towers, public art. AFAIK, most commercial businesses aren't considered landmarks for the game's purposes. Ingress (the game Pokemon Go sprung from, and which uses the same location/portal data) explains its criteria for accepting new portals here, though they apparently haven't been accepting new submissions for almost a year.
posted by Pandora Kouti at 1:22 PM on July 11, 2016 [3 favorites]

Here's an answer:
I’ve had several business owners asking how they can apply to become PokéStop or Pokémon Gym. Unfortunately, these locations are pre-determined by the developer, Niantic Labs. That being said, they have to recognize that there’s a fantastic marketing and revenue opportunity here. I’m reaching out to them directly to ask about their plans in that regard.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 1:22 PM on July 11, 2016

Niantic has had portal submissions (from which gyms and Pokestops were pulled) off for a while now, so the short-term answer is no.

Longer term answer: Even if they did, the locations are supposed to be accessible to the public and showing a permanent point of local interest (public art, park, cemetery, post office, etc). Businesses as businesses aren't supposed to get in, although I see lots of art inside and outside businesses, so that may be possible.

If you already have a Pokestop and want it to turn into a gym, there isn't any mechanism for that yet that I've heard about, but the game has been out of beta for less than a week and I'm sure they will be looking for ways to monetize the server load.
posted by tchemgrrl at 1:24 PM on July 11, 2016

Although the initial set of PokeStops and Gyms were pulled from a subset of Ingress portals, I haven't seen anything that suggests Niantic plans to keep the requirements for what makes a good stop/gym the same as the requirements for an Ingress portal. The stories/universe are different. I wouldn't be surprised if there are paid ones (there have been paid portals in Ingress in Japan and parts of Europe, I believe) or something other process to create them.
posted by skynxnex at 1:28 PM on July 11, 2016

Rather than worry about Gyms, which are less common, find out if there's a PokeStop nearby. Then offer some kind of incentive (discount, free drinks, waived cover, etc.) to Pokemon Go players who use a Lure Module on that PokeStop. This is an in-game item that attracts more catchable pokemon near the location for all players for 30 minutes at a time. The lure usage shows up on all players' maps, so it'll pretty reliably attract more foot traffic to the location while it's active.
posted by waffleriot at 1:40 PM on July 11, 2016 [20 favorites]

I think there was a deal with Jamba Juice and Zipcar back in the day of Ingress only. I imagine if they are going to roll out advertising deals it will be after the bugs are worked out.
posted by pearshaped at 1:41 PM on July 11, 2016

The lure usage shows up on all players' maps, so it'll pretty reliably attract more foot traffic to the location while it's active.

Yeah, I set off a couple of lures on some of the PokeStops on my library's grounds and they definitely brought people over.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 1:46 PM on July 11, 2016 [3 favorites]

There is some hanging out at gyms, but only when it makes sense physically. You'd be much better off leveraging lures. They're on for 30 minutes and people gravitate to them, especially if there are two close to each other.
posted by k8t at 2:13 PM on July 11, 2016

I'm not a player here either so correct me if I'm missing something, but is there a reason why you can't just grab an account and drop some lures yourself?
posted by Jilder at 4:39 AM on July 12, 2016

There are 3 teams, as well. You could offer rotating discounts for teams, or if there is a gym nearby, you could limit a promotion to the team currently occupying it.
posted by worstname at 8:25 AM on July 12, 2016

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