eSocial: I dream about internet marketing….and palm trees

It’s Hip To Be Foursquare
February 12, 2010, 9:48 pm
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Four Corner National Monument

The Ultimate Foursquare Location

Ah Foursquare, the latest in the social media craze. As an online marketer, it’s my job to be knowledgeable about these new social sites and how they can benefit or not benefit a client. While I am semi-reluctant to broadcast my exact location (map and all) to the whole world of Facebook and Twitter, I was very reluctant to try this new tool, as I really don’t want people to know where I am every second of everyday. I have been “checking in” for the past couple weeks, initially for the sake of research, and I find that I am sort of getting addicted. The only issue I have with foursquare right now is that the blackberry app is still in beta, and therefore not as easy to use at the moment. Because I am the only person at my firm using this technology…I’d like to share a couple ways I think foursquare can be put to good use!

Foursquare has a great potential for marketing marketing/ad agencies (and of course lots of other places). I am seeing employees at agencies “checking in” at work, like I do each day (i’m the mayor of my workplace btw). Checkin in at work essentially generates free publicity for your agency, and it lets followers of the agency and the individual know that they are knowledgeable about the latest in social media trends by simply viewing their feed. I just can’t stress practice what you preach enough when it comes to the transparency associated with the internet these days. I also like that users will say, “just checked in @work with @cmb23 and @whoever….which is essentially a free #FF for your cool co-workers!

One way for businesses to leverage this technology is to use foursquare as a frequent flyer type program. For instance, reward your mayors with a free product when they reach the title. They’ll know you appreciate the free props. If they tweet that you gave them something for free for their mayor status, watch as more people check in to your business.

Perhaps after 10 check in’s at the local coffee house, the 11th check in is free, like 2010 version of the punchcard! Take this a step further, have a prize drawing at the end of each month, week, exc for those who have checked in during that time.

Or perhaps the first 25 people to check in on a given day are given 10% off their next purchase.

One downside I find with foursquare is that it cannot be used with strictly eCommerce businesses. If you are shopping at an online only merchant, you cannot check in with an address. But if a consumer is shopping at the brick and mortar location, they can “check in” and potentially drive traffic to the store’s website, promoting online conversions.