Foursquare’s new page telling businesses all about how to use Foursquare to offer specials to customers is a step in the right direction. According to TechCrunch Foursquare only has about 2,000 offers in the system now, but I would imagine offering some kind of check-in incentive is on most local search marketers 2010 to-do list.
Let’s see what the ever-cranky TechCrunch commenters have to say:
On the what’s-the-point might-as-well-kill-myself-side:
Reality is that local businesses buy from people they rub elbows with…
Local businesses are not going to seek out ANY new service platforms. Age old issue in the local game, but few of the new, location-based startups get that.
Time to start building a huge sales team, or developing a resale channel that makes sense. Otherwise, choose a new model or die on the same sword that countless locally-focused startups have.
On the other hand:
LBS is actually one of the more promising marketing platforms for small/local biz. It’s a great way to reward patronage, encourage word-of-mouth recommendations from customers, and incentivize exploration of local economies. The dashboard is a great feature, and as consumer LBS usage increases and businesses begin experimenting with different reward systems, the value of LBS will grow exponentially. I’d definitely take a long position on LBS generally. As to which platform will ultimately dominate, I’m agnostic. But the underlying technology is solid from a marketing perspective.
I just had three friends in one week start playing and a total of eight in the past few months. Seven of which are not even close to what I would call early adopters and unlike twitter, they all update all the time.
I think this is just the start of mainstream popularity and frankly great timing by the Foursquare team. I have enough faith in this company to apply. Are you hiring salespeople foursquare?