Is it time for you to pay attention to Foursquare?
Right now, Foursquare has somewhere around a million users – and they are adding about 15,000 users per day.
My own experience with Foursquare when someone became the mayor of my house – at 4am.
And I just happened to be up and working in my office when it happened.
Wait a minute, someone can be the mayor of your house?
But that isn’t really why you will be hearing more about Foursquare in the future — you will be hearing more about Foursquare (or Gowalla or other services just like it) because as the web becomes more and more mobile using smartphones, marketers are getting more savvy at something called location based marketing.
Location based marketing. As in, consumers notify you that they are “here” and you have a chance to market to them.
One simple example of how location based marketing potentially works:
Go to Downtown Gilbert and plan on going to Oregano’s for dinner. As you walk in the door, you “check in” on Foursquare. As you check in, you are notified that there is a Foursquare special for Joes Real BBQ for anyone who checked in at Oreganos where you get 50% off if you show your phone to them in the next 10 minutes.
Then did you know that tracking internet activity is easily possible if you use the right software? So, you can easily track what remote staff are doing and ensure that they are doing the right work which obviously makes managing them a lot easier.Are you still going to wait in line at Oreganos (they always have a line, right?) when you could go across the street and save 50% on your meal?
I call it “customer stealing” – you can call it whatever you want.
But it is here.
And with the adoption velocity increasing at an increasing rate for applications like this — it won’t be long before businesses figure out the best way to market to you when you are in their immediate vicinity.
It’s early — and some of the smartest people I know say that right now Foursquare needs businesses more than businesses need Foursquare…
But it won’t be long before the tables turn.
So if you are a small business (or a big one for that matter) and if you are wondering if there is an ROI for Foursquare — go ahead and sign up for the Foursquare ROI Challenge and get your business set up offering your customers Foursquare specials.
It’s free in the month of June.
And start picking off those customers from your competitors across the street.
About the Author:Justin McHood calls himself a “Mortgage Commentator” and works for Academy Mortgage Corporation. You can find his loan officers at Ten Day Close and read more of his thoughts on the mortgage business on Zillow’s Mortgages Unzipped Blog. You can also find him at most East Valley Friday Nights gatherings. He’s the one in the blue shirt.
Bill Risser says
I gotta keep closer tabs on that Guenther! Gonna be tough at 4am though…
Carmen Brodeur says
Very cool technology. Thanks for the explanation. I guess I am a little out of touch. I have heard of foursquare but didn't know what it was before today. Any way for Realtors to utilize this to their advantage?
Alex Cortez says
As Carmen pointed out, I'd love to hear about ways for realtors to tap into this to market more efficiently. For example, if somebody gave their location as the corner of 1st street and main, could we send them a 'click here for foreclosures in the 1st/main street area' and, if so, how would we about implementing such a plan? Thanks for the post, Justin.
Rich Cederberg says
Some people think location based marketing will be just another unwanted intrusion in our lives. I think it sounds really exciting, even more information at our fingertips!
Thanks for the comments.
So I thought I would share this with everyone…
My wife and kids love Oregano's in Gilbert and my son wanted to go there for his 6th birthday. Me? I like either Liberty Market or Joes BBQ WAYYYY better than Oregano's.
So I go to "check in" on Foursquare at Oregano's and what do I get?
A "SPECIAL NEARBY" button on Foursquare announcing that Liberty Market had a special going.
Sweet! I was in business!
The special was for the Mayors only.
Which is one thing to keep in mind when creating Foursquare specials:
If you are going to "steal" customers from other competitors in the area, make sure you have "a special for everyone".
You have no idea how bad I wished that there was *something* I could have shown my wife and said "hey, honey let's go to Liberty Market, they are giving away……"
I suspect that Location Based Marketing is going to become part of our everyday lives in the next few years.
Just a hunch.
Doug Francis says
This would be especially interesting when there is a mortgage guy in the same building as a another mortgage guy… since that is a bit more complicated than a dinner special!