Here is a social networking site that allows a user to check-in their location, wherever it may be, and get rewarded for doing so. They accumulate points by checking-in and, with more points, badges and rewards are unlocked. What makes Foursquare a social tool is its capability of updating your followers of where you are, whether in Facebook, Twitter, or any other platform supported by Foursquare.
As you accumulate more points, your badges advance from the basic ‘newbie’ state to the ‘adventurer’ badge, then the ‘bender’, and so forth. You can even be the mayor of your own preferred spot, as long as it has not yet been previously taken by any other user. To be a mayor, you would often need to check-in and perform other unique tasks.
What makes Foursquare a budding genius is not these basic rules in itself, but how it can be used as an effective tool for advertising and marketing one’s own business, whether it is a massive transnational company or a small enterprise. Listen to what the founders, Dennis and Naveen, has to say about their brainchild:
If you want your business to be registered in the Foursquare map, you can easily do so. As a matter of fact, the website has laid out everything you need to do here. By making sure your business has a place in the Foursquare map, you are guaranteeing a connection between your business and your mobile customers.
Here are some of the privileges you can enjoy by registering in Foursquare:
Free advertising space
The easiest privilege is the advertising space you get. Once a user checks-in to your location, it will automatically broadcast that update either to his Facebook or Twitter account—maybe even both. By doing so, the network of the same user is roused by curiosity: what is the place this user is talking about? What are the products being sold there? These are only some of the questions that will inevitably pop in any person’s mind upon seeing a Foursquare update of your location.
When a user checks-in to your location, what does he get? This is where Foursquare “Specials” come in. These Specials are given by the Mayor, the owner of the location or business. For example, after ten visits to your registered coffee shop in Foursquare, you may give a free drink or upsize to the visitor. This will compel the visitor to visit your coffee shop as many times as he can, thus generating income for your business!
Another important benefit is that you get real time stats of how many visitors have been to your location, which visitors visit most frequently, how long they stay, and how many of them are all in all. These are all statistics that can help you in assessing the mobile reach of your business.
With these privileges—and so many more that remains to be said—it can easily be inferred that Foursquare can mean something for your business. The question is, though, are you willing to take the extra mile?