Foursquare.com seems to be this year’s answer to “what will be the next Twitter” and it’s only January. Foursquare, if you aren’t familiar with it, is a location-based social network where users “check in” wherever they might be.
Whoever has checked into a specific location the most is crowned Mayor and part of the social network’s appeal is this sense of competition for the title of Mayor in key locations.
I can hear you already… "why do I care that you’re at Starbucks or the Mayor of the Bellagio?" Ahh, no wonder people are comparing Foursquare to Twitter. The same question…why do I care?
I think it’s the wrong question. I think the question we should be asking ourselves is “if we put our marketing hats on, how might we use Foursquare?” I have no doubt that people will get quite creative, but here are some thought starters.
Give the Mayor his/her Due: Imagine the local pizza palace declaring that on any given day…if you are the Mayor of their palace, you and your party dine for free. (Who wouldn’t love to announce that to your friends or the kid’s baseball team?)
Buddy Up: Imagine four or five businesses working together to create a fun scavenger hunt of sorts that requires you check into each locale…and then you enjoy some huge discount or prize package that features all of their offerings.
Newbies Welcome Wagon: When you check into the dry cleaners for the first time, those laundered shirts are just a penny each.
Share the Love: Check in at the local marketing agency and bring a canned good for the food bank. For your trouble, you get a little temporary body art and a chance at winning a big prize.
Online and Off: The local radio station is doing a remote. During the remote, if you check in and show your phone’s screen – you go into a drawing to win front row tickets to the hot concert in town.
Come on Back, Ya’ Hear: Check in at the local coffee house at least 4 times in the course of a month and you get free coffee for the next month.
Check in Specials: Using the Tips area…the local watering hole could offer happy hour specials, buy a beer, get one free specials etc.
Like I said…I am sure I’m only scratching the surface. How about it…how might you put Foursquare to work?
Drew McLellan's a 25+ year marketing agency veteran who lives for creating "a ha" moments for his clients, clients' customers, peers and audiences across the land.
Drew writes at his own blog, Drew’s Marketing Minute and several other hot spots. He authored 99.3 Random Acts of Marketing, co-edited the Age of Conversation series of books with Gavin Heaton, and he launched his own firm McLellan Marketing Group in 1995.
LinkedIn: Drew McLellan