This week I am writing about a brilliant marketing tactic done by the San Antonio Botanical gardens. I happen to be a member. The membership has its perks including free entrance to the Lady Bird Wildflower Center and many other gardens which are part of the reciprocal admissions program from the American Horticultural Society. Believe it or not this actually gains you admission to Austin’s own UMLAUF Sculpture Garden. It is worth the sixty-five dollars a year for the family.
I am sure you are all aware of the Pokémon Go craze that has recently spread across the world. For the first time in a long time I am witnessing kids voluntarily coming out to explore the outdoors. So when I received the email that they were having a Pokémon Go night at the Botanical Gardens, I count not resist the chance to drag the family out to one of my favorite places without the usual grunts and complaints. Upon arriving we had to drive around for quite some time to find a parking place. I was impressed by the turnout. The garden was full with more than just flowers. The visitors were of all ages. After the initial surprise of seeing couples in their 60s chasing imaginary characters, I settled into the fact that this was a great opportunity to raise money for the garden and introduce others to the nature areas in our area. As the kids were debating whether team Instinct, Mystic, or Valor was the best, another patron heard and uttered Instinct Rocks! Of course my youngest took this as a win on his part since he is team Valor. The best part was after all the initial rush to catch Pokémon was over, you saw families playing in the giant chess board area, lounging on the extra-large garden chairs and having conversations with each other.
After a little research I began to understand a little more about this exceptional move by the garden employees. If your place of business happens to host a Pokéstop or Gym, you can attract Pokémon players aka trainers. Setting out lures will bring even more characters, thereby bringing more people. When as a garden area you have space you are bound to have a stop or gym on your property. Why not use it to bring more people to your garden? In my case, a wonderful way to spend a Friday night with the family in nature! Maybe now I can get them to visit more areas around the central Texas area! On a similar note, my son scored a big Pokémon Go Squirtle at our counselor’s office in Austin the other day. 😉