For most of us involved in Social Media, (a term which this particular author hates), Foursquare has become routine and even a way of life. Checking into a location is almost as much of the common vernacular right now as “Facebook me” was 5 years ago.
Don’t believe me? Try going to a destination where there are a multitude of places to check-in and see if you don’t get told that the app can’t check you in right now, try again later. Last weekend I coerced my best friend to join Foursquare since he was an avid “Facebook Location” follower. He kept watching me checking in and wanted to know what the big deal was.
His first few minutes of Check-Ins he got a multitude of “points” and was hooked like most people are. Soon after he was asking me if I had checked in yet. I had created a monster. In his haste to check in everywhere he was missing the point however. He was getting part of the attraction, the so-called game of points, but Foursquare is a more than just I am here”, check out my point total”. For marketers, it’s also another clever way to get some free press, and more importantly, get a share of promoters (customers) who actually believe in your product. It also allows you to become “mayor” of your favorite places. A lot of places now have signs requesting you to check in.
Many times people, like my friend who was checking-in at great speed, fail to see the “specials here” tab during their check-in and miss the deal. Admittedly, sometimes the deal comes after multiple check-ins, thereby forcing you to come back again and again in order to achieve it. Most of the time, however, the special is a free appetizer at a restaurant (RA Sushi Bar in Las Vegas offers a free edamame appetizer with a check-in. Just show it to your server to get credit.) Or perhaps a percentage off of a comedy act. (The Mirage is currently offering 35% off of Terry Fator’s show if you show your check-in to the box office)