Foursquare: A Winning Game for Businesses
April 11, 2011 8:26 PM
Tagged as Foursquare, Michelle Tjelmeland, social marketing, social media
Do business owners really need one more social networking platform to promote their services? The answer to that question is always yes if the return on the investment is high and the manpower necessary is low.
Posted in Social Media
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Foursquare Labs offers an exceptional way for businesses to capitalize on the increasing numbers of smartphone users and the popularity of social networking apps. Foursquare is a location-based game that requires players to “check-in” when they patronize a registered business. Customers are encouraged to leave public comments and tips regarding their experience. What draws players to the game? Discounts and a chance to be crowned the “Mayor” of each location they visit. Upon “checking-in” to a location, Foursquare users are clued into any coupons valid at their current location and any in the nearby area.
Michelle Tjelmeland, owner of e-websmart and a Social Media Specialist, says, “Business owners are increasingly confused about the best ways to reach their customers. Foursquare offers incredible ROI and it’s fun for players. Not many other marketing tools engage clients in such an interactive way while at the same time offering the business usable real-time feedback.”
If you’re willing to jump into 21st century marketing, there are some things to keep in mind to make it a winning investment:
K.I.S.S. Keep it simple and straightforward…at least at the beginning. Getting started with Foursquare is as easy as spending a few minutes registering your business and listing your first discount. Once you’ve learned the ins and outs of the game, up the ante with highly focused discounts and more interactive play.
You must be a player if you want to win. Foursquare is all about seeing and being seen. Reciprocity makes you a winner. Make sure to check-in when you visit an establishment and post valuable comments at each stop. Your increased visibility and helpful tips will garner your business support. Make sure to link your Foursquare account to Facebook and Twitter so that your activity gets posted on all your social networking sites simultaneously.
Don’t try to reinvent the wheel. There is no need to try to customize Foursquare with fancy coding. This can be time consuming and expensive. Odds are someone has already done the work for you anyway. Visit the Foursquare apps page and build your own designer platform.
Pay it forward. Be generous and give back to your Foursquare customers. Offer generous discounts and targeted specials. You’ll be rewarded by customer loyalty and you’ll draw new players as word spreads about your offers.
It’s all about the details. Use the information that you get from Foursquare. Pay attention to customer comments and make recommended changes if you receive a valid criticism. If you’re noticing clients migrate to a competitor or frequent another business, get creative with the owner and develop an affiliate relationship. Also, notice the times of check-ins. This may provide clues as to how to better serve your clientele. Finally, always thank customers for feedback and acknowledge your gratitude for their business.
7.5 million Foursquare users are waiting for you! Let the game begin.