Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare
by Tom Snyder

A member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

MINI Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare by Tom Snyder A member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc. .

It is intended to provide helpful and informative material on the subject matter covered. 11 Community Centre. USA Penguin Group (Canada). Stephen’s Green. Auckland 1311.ALPHA BOOKS Published by the Penguin Group Penguin Group (USA) Inc. India Penguin Group (NZ). Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd. Ltd. 80 Strand. THE COMPLETE IDIOT’S GUIDE TO and Design are registered trademarks of Penguin Group (USA) Inc. Registered Offices: 80 Strand.) Ltd. It is sold with the understanding that the author and publisher are not engaged in rendering professional services in the book.. loss. Victoria 3124. 25 St. 250 Camberwell Road. London WC2R 0RL. without written permission from the publisher. Camberwell. or otherwise. address Alpha Books. The author and publisher specifically disclaim any responsibility for any liability. No patent liability is assumed with respect to the use of the information contained herein. the publisher and author assume no responsibility for errors or omissions. a competent professional should be consulted.. personal or otherwise. Rosedale. 67 Apollo Drive. ISBN: 978-1-101-46314-7 Note: This publication contains the opinions and ideas of its author. For information. Panchsheel Park. 90 Eglinton Avenue East. 800 East 96th Street.. . recording.. Johannesburg 2196. or transmitted by any means. directly or indirectly. No part of this book shall be reproduced. photocopying. 375 Hudson Street. Suite 700. Rosebank. or risk. Canada (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc. Australia (a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty.) Penguin Group (Australia). North Shore. stored in a retrieval system.) Penguin Books India Pvt. England Penguin Ireland. Dublin 2. New Delhi—110 017. Neither is any liability assumed for damages resulting from the use of information contained herein.) Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty. IN 46240. mechanical. Ltd. Toronto. 24 Sturdee Avenue.) Penguin Books Ltd. Ontario M4P 2Y3. England Copyright © 2011 by Alpha Books All rights reserved. London WC2R 0RL. which is incurred as a consequence. Indianapolis. of the use and application of any of the contents of this book. Although every precaution has been taken in the preparation of this book. New Zealand (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd.. South Africa Penguin Books Ltd. If the reader requires personal assistance or advice. electronic. New York. New York 10014.

In This Mini Guide Creating Your Location as a Venue Set Up an Account Look for Your Venue Create Your Venue Choose Categories for Your Venue Add Tags to Your Venue Add Tips to Your Venue Becoming the Manager of Your Venue Claim Your Venue What Managers and Employees Can’t Do A Word About Superusers Rewarding Your Check-Ins Create Specials Choose Your Specials Rotate Specials Award Badges Reward Your Mayor Driving Traffic to Your Venue Spread the Word Use Social Media Trawl for Customers Measuring Your Success Understand Foursquare Venue Stats Monitor Check-Ins at Your Venue Your Most Important Measurement How Successful Businesses Are Using Foursquare AJ Bombers TLC Tasti D-Lite Resources .

The true power of Foursquare—as with all marketing—lies in your own creativity and ingenuity. a service that allows people to let others know where they are by “checking in” to the places they go. And with 4 million users and thousands of businesses already participating. you can’t afford to ignore it. you’ll want to maintain that account for your own check-ins. . Creating Your Location as a Venue Maximizing Foursquare’s potential as an effective marketing tool is what it’s all about—and getting your business set up as a venue on Foursquare is simple. Foursquare is not only a way for friends to check in with each other and see what they are doing. and checking into locations to earn badges that have nothing to do with your business. If you’ll be participating in Foursquare as a player.4 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare “Who would want to tell everyone where they are?” “I thought all these people in my restaurant on their smartphones were texting. mapable. Set Up an Account Before you find or create your venue and claim yourself as its manager. features. it is a way for businesses to drive customers to their venue. In this guide you will learn how to set up yourself and your business. and get some great ideas on how to use foursquare as a marketing tool. Plus. A venue is a physical. the new ways to use Foursquare effectively as it grows in popularity. Here’s how you go about setting it up. becoming comfortable and proficient with its features now will also put you in a better position to understand. Jumping on the Foursquare bandwagon will give you an immediate advantage over your competitors. You may already have a personal account. and anticipate. geographic location that people will be checking into using their mobile device. and functionality. you need to have a Foursquare user account. Turns out they were ‘checking in.’” “Somebody just introduced themselves to me as the ‘mayor’ of my business!” What are these people talking about? It’s the strange new world of Foursquare. and can be a powerful marketing tool.

You need to wait till you have your Venue Profile ready to promote. Take a few minutes now to make sure you’re good to go with Facebook and Twitter. You do. edit details.5 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare Definition A manager is the person approved by Foursquare as the “owner” of a venue and who is authorized to create specials. so use that for the business name. as you’re limiting your chances of success on Foursquare without them. Your logo or a photo of your venue will do the trick. add your business’s Twitter and Facebook accounts to your profile. tip If you need help with Twitter or website and use the search box in the upper right corner to search for your business by name. To find out if your business is already on Foursquare. and leave the last name blank. it is probably all wrong. The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Social Media Marketing will be a great resource. just not at this moment. Upload a photo that represents your business. Use an e-mail address that you or your staff regularly check. There’s a time to come back and find friends later. preferably one dedicated to your business. and add employees for a venue on Foursquare. It’s important to be on Twitter and Facebook. . As you finish the Sign Up/Join Now process. Look for Your Venue Before you jump in and create your venue. go to any page on the Foursquare. I’ll tell you when that is. For the purposes of managing your Foursquare marketing strategy for your business. you’ll be asked if you want to invite friends into your network. you need a business account with a public name that matches your business. Use the Join Now icon on the Foursquare home page to create that account. First name is a required field. the search will display your venue page. then come back to Foursquare to link those into your Foursquare account. When prompted. be aware of the fact that there’s a good chance that your business already exists on Foursquare—but be aware that because you didn’t create it. If you’re in there.

mayors. then merge any duplicates—and all their check-ins—into one. but their mobile device fails to display it and so they create a new entry. and the original creator are the only ones who can edit a venue’s information. go ahead and create a new. the merger should happen within a few days. you’re probably not—your second impulse will be to panic when you realize that there is no way for you correct it. but don’t worry about that right now. try to check in. Shortly thereafter. or even missing altogether. the situation can be compounded by each of them containing information that is incorrect. use your mobile device to search for and find your venue using the search function (Places > Menu > Search). Superusers. If your venue has several listings and none of them contains the correct information. merging multiple venues is also something that you can’t do by yourself. Because the superuser who merges your venues typically tries to fill in any missing information on the final merged listing. select each one and use the “Edit Venue” option in the menu to flag the venues as duplicates. To begin the process. Unfortunately. but you’ll need a little help. Then report your listing and all of the others as duplicates. they will often create a venue and guess at the address or simply fill in nothing more than the name. That happens when people are at a venue. What you can do is to report a duplicate venue. Depending on the number and efficiency of the superusers in your area. Venue entries created on the fly by users on mobile devices often include errors. When you find multiple entries. complete listing for your venue using the steps below. where one of them will compare venue details.6 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare If the information is incorrect. . So in addition to having multiple listings. It can be fixed. Definition Superusers are members of the Foursquare community that have been appointed by Foursquare to police and make corrections to the database. The actual merger of duplicate venues is one of the functions that can only be completed by a superuser. your first impulse will be to look for the place on the page where you can correct it. Unless you are a superuser—and as a Foursquare newbie. Your search might also result in your venue appearing multiple times in a list of venue pages. Because people are eager to just check in. It will be difficult. you’ll make them happy by giving a complete and correct listing to merge with the others without sending them on a wild Google chase to find the correct information. they will appear in the administrative area for superusers.

Foursquare will make it a clickable link to that Twitter profile we’ve already determined you have and are very good at using. click the “style guide” link on the edit page. but rather on a service or product offering. . Make sure to fill in all of your venue’s information correctly. Make sure you’re signed into Foursquare with your business account. you can (and should) move the pin marker on the map to the proper location. they may check in but not get any points. When you’ve finished filling out your venue information. Tags will help them find your business. make sure to double-check the map to see if Foursquare thinks you are where you really are. Add Tags to Your Venue Sometimes. the one that matches the visual identity of your business. that one. and has a link to your website or Facebook page? Yes.” Follow that to the form you’ll use to add your venue. and click on it. and fill in the cross street field properly. and add each separately. Choose Categories for Your Venue Next. As the venue’s creator. make sure you fill out the Twitter field with your Twitter profile name. Using it like the Yellow Pages. people may actually be inside your business and not able to find your venue on their mobile devices. people search Foursquare for suggestions of places to go to. So if Foursquare puts your location somewhere else on the map than where it really is. Foursquare uses the GPS on mobile devices to make sure people are really at a venue. with no place to add any promotional verbiage. they’ll do their search not based on the business name.” you’ll see a link to “add a new venue. You know. Because your venue information is limited almost solely to your address. If the drop-down menu offers you subcategories. browse through those to see if any of them will better describe your business. next to “ADD TIP.7 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare Create Your Venue Creating your venue is best done on your computer rather than a mobile device. select the proper category for your venue. In smaller type. Even worse. or be allowed to unlock your special. find the “Add Things” link at the top of the page. Add as many as are appropriate—but be sure to pick the one that will drive the best traffic to your establishment and set that as the primary one. For help. You can choose both categories and subcategories. which outlines the right abbreviations and capitalization.

and done right. If your venue already existed. you probably already have check-ins. then copy and paste each into your profile. You’ll enter each tag individually. You’ll want to regularly monitor your venue’s tags and categories. Add Tips to Your Venue Tips are suggestions that users post to your venue page to make recommendations of things to do or to request while at your venue. make that page the one to which you link. in the middle of that list. Typically that link will be your site’s main URL. Be aware of the fact that anyone can add categories and tags to your venue page. if you have the ability to create a special page in your site just for Foursquare users. . sort them in the order of value. build and sort your list of tags in a text editor first. If you’re primarily a pizza restaurant. Maybe you even have a mayor. However. A good rule is to only use the tags that you believe will bring meaningful traffic to your venue. put pizza at the very top. Warning Don’t create a huge list of tags and bury your primary service. Only a superuser (level 2 or above) or the venue’s creator or manager can delete tags. Be sure to create a tip of your own with the most compelling reason you can think of why someone should come to your business. Because reordering them once they’re in your profile will require deleting and reentering.8 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare There is no limit to the number of tags you may add to your venue. There you have it! Your venue page is done. but if you add too many it may be difficult for people to find the ones they’re looking for on your main venue listing. The next step is to create a strategy that will turn those check-ins into revenue and loyalty. and only those or a mayor can delete categories. If you’ll still have a big list. You only have 200 characters—so make it good! See the “Add link” next to the SHARE button? Make sure you add a link to your website before you complete the tip! That is the only place anywhere in Foursquare where you can drive traffic directly to your site. and delete any that seem inappropriate or don’t fit in with your overall strategy. When you’re happy with the list. and they will appear in the order you enter them. in order. You’ll have people checking in at your venue before you know it. or product offering.

If you chose the mail option and don’t receive your envelope after a few weeks. in a week or two you’ll receive an envelope with easy instructions. find the link to request a Foursquare window cling. go to the support center (support. That process begins by clicking on the “Claim here” link on the upper right of the venue page. there is one thing you lose. the call will come quickly and the verification is instant. . If done by phone. In the new age of social media. Once you’ve been approved. Whichever you choose. Foursquare needs to make sure you’re authorized to do As you follow the steps. displaying one of these in your front window or door gives you the same credibility that a chamber of commerce. So. Better Business Bureau. It’s a great honor for many Foursquare users to become a mayor. or even months. find the Foursquare for Business section. click on the “Why has my venue claim not been processed?” link. The biggest change they made was to verify your claim by calling the phone number of the venue or sending snail-mail to the address. when entered in the Foursquare site. But there’s nothing more frustrating than competing with someone who has the daily benefit of checking in as they punch in. you’ll be given a choice of how you want them to contact you to validate your claim. before you run off to start doing all the things you can with your new manager superpowers. make sure to let your staff know that you’re expecting a contact from Foursquare. once you become manager.foursquare. Claim Your Venue The first step is to submit a claim that you manage the venue. to complete. Foursquare’s venue claiming process has been greatly improved since the days when it was done entirely on the honor system and took weeks. Foursquare now automatically disqualifies you from becoming the mayor. or Diners Club sticker used to. What Managers and Employees Can’t Do With everything you get by becoming the manager. If done by mail. The process uses a validation code that comes from Foursquare that.9 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare Becoming the Manager of Your Venue Just creating the venue doesn’t automatically let you start creating specials. and follow the instructions. completes the verification process.

Before I became a Level 2 superuser there were a ton of duplicate venue entries there. fix mislocated venues. So you’ll want to locate them on Foursquare and when you find them. I was able to identify and contact several superusers who were able and willing to help me by making the appropriate changes. Level 1 superusers can fix incorrect venue information. knowing how to contact superusers is important. when a business needs some help with their venue. They can be an ally. but can also create “aliases” for venues—alternate names for places that are commonly misspelled or nicknamed. go to the “Employee of” section in the right-hand column to add them as employees of your venue. If you’re going to be serious about Foursquare as a marketing tool for your business. but only some of them needed to be merged. and handle venue address suggestions. • Level 1—This status is awarded after simply checking into 30 venues. Regardless of what they can do. Warning Some of your employees may take their check-ins at your business pretty seriously. merge duplicate venue listings. Now. • Level 3—These superusers can do everything level 2 superusers can. A Word About Superusers There are three levels of superusers. • Level 2—These superusers can edit venues. it’s good to find out who they are in your area. tip I oversee social media for a Midwestern international airport.10 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare It also disqualifies your employees. I pass on the love by helping. foursquare was considering some changes to the capabilities and qualifications of superusers. . By tweeting that I was looking for a superuser. and not yours. At the time of this writing. wherever I can. It’s a good idea to explain to your employees that it’s Foursquare’s policy that won’t allow them to be mayor.

• Becoming a Mayor—The person who checks in at your venue the most times within the last 60 days becomes “Mayor” of your venue. Once approved. specials. The process usually takes a day or two. Knowing what motivates them will help you draw them to your business. all specials need to be reviewed for approval by Foursquare. Sometimes it’s a desire to connect with others by using foursquare to find out where their friends are. Once you’re approved as a manager. Foursquare awards points for checking into venues. specials give you the best shot at driving the specific type of traffic you are attempting to attract. Possible specials fall into five types: • Everytime Check-Ins—These are the ones that will be unlocked by anyone who checks in at your venue. • First-Time Check-Ins—As you can guess. and the points that Foursquare awards for checking into your venue are something you have no control over. If you do. Probably it is best to focus on the other two rewards you can control: specials and badges. the special will still need a manager’s final click to make it active. let me know. Foursquare users have a different perspective. • Frequency Check-Ins—These are the every 3rd. and badges. . More frequently. The check-in requirement can be set to any number you’d like. Those rewards include points. you’re allowed by Foursquare to offer specials to people who check in at your venue. I haven’t been able to figure out a way to use awards to a business’s advantage. it’s based on the fact that they can earn rewards by checking in. Create Specials As a venue owner.11 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare Rewarding Your Check-Ins While people have all sorts of different reasons why they’ll choose to go to one business over another. Visitors “unlock” those specials if they meet the criteria that you specify. 30th or 300th variety. Just like managers. these are specials that can be unlocked by a person only the very first time they check in. you can create your specials by clicking on the new “Add a special” link that will appear on your venue page. Because they are customizable.

or even every tenth. the bigger you’ll need to make the value for it to be worth the effort. A special that rewards people for posting tips is a good move if some knucklehead has used the “Add a Tip” function to post a critical or negative comment. When a check-in qualifies a visitor for your special. Rotate Specials While you can submit multiple specials to Foursquare. You may think that people will check in 10 times to earn half-off on a cup of coffee. you don’t have to keep track of any of it. The only person who can remove a negative tip is the person who posted it. “Show us your ‘Dog’s Best Friend Badge’ and get 20% off. you can only offer one at any given time. and determines whether a visitor meets the conditions of your special. which your staff will have to verify. or you can constantly rotate different specials . If attempts to find that person. but they won’t. But if repeat business is your goal. you should offer specials that reward repeat check-ins—every third. creating a special only for firsttime check-ins will help accomplish that. Something like. Choose Your Specials Choosing what specials you wish to offer should be considered strategically. If your strategic goal is to bring in lots of new customers. and make sure yours give you the best chance of driving traffic to your business. the best thing you can do is to use an “Add a Tip” special to create so many positive posts that the negative one becomes lost among them. their mobile device will show a special screen that displays the fact that they have unlocked it. You can set a single special to run forever. resolve the issue. check-in. You determine the conditions.” Because Foursquare keeps track of user visits. They simply show that screen to you or your staff. The more check-ins your special requires before it is unlocked. and have him remove the tip fail. All approved specials will be listed in your “Manage Specials” area.12 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare • Always Unlocked Specials—Also called Wildcard Specials. tip It’s always a good idea to search for your competitors’ specials to see how yours compare with theirs.

with some people willing to travel miles—even hundreds or thousands of miles—to get one. and if it looks like you may be drawing a crowd of over 100. only then will you want to start promoting the fact that the possibility of a Swarm Badge exists. badges can still be a smart way to drive traffic to your business. Twitter will be a great tool to assist in that effort.13 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare to run. show anyone who may be verifying a special any business procedures that will need to be followed on your point-of-sale system to honor it. Make sure to let your employees know how the special works. If done strategically. Foursquare’s philosophy is to help badges hold value by making them a scarce commodity. The traffic generated by a badge is often a one-time visit because the further people travel to earn the badge. . the less likely they may be to become a repeat customer. Unless you’re a sports stadium. state fair. Award Badges Badges are huge motivators for some Foursquare users. huge concert hall. promotion. The worst thing that can happen is for someone to come to your venue and show an employee the unlocked special. only to be met with a blank stare. Seriously. the Bravo Cable Network. of them they create. Use your account to promote it. or celebrity to incentivize a large group of them to come at the same time. check in on a mobile device and show them how the unlock notification will be displayed. If you still don’t have one. Experiment and see which specials generate the best return for the investment and the effort. as fans hoping to get a Swarm Badge will spread the word to their friends to increase the odds of a qualifying turnout. or other venue where lots of people come for a specific event. or rather how few. You will only want to offer this as a possible incentive if you have a reasonable degree of certainty that you’ll get enough people there to have 50 of them check in. or a very special event. The Swarm Badge is awarded when more than 50 people are simultaneously checked in at the same venue. Before you activate a special. It’s harder than you think. But there are ways to take advantage of existing badges to drive traffic to your venue. If possible. Unless your business is a major national brand—like Starbucks. it won’t happen spontaneously. Every client and business is different. or an NBA team—it’s not likely that you’ll be able to have Foursquare create a badge just for you. however. Asking for an RSVP will provide you with the numbers of potential attendees. So they exercise extreme control over how many. and didn’t create one the last couple of times I told you—go do it now. You’ll need an already substantial base of fans that are regularly checking into your venue.

or actually even coming in. offer regular specials that include discounts or free items that combine with a purchase (like a free dessert or drink with the purchase of a meal). maybe. Your event will have its own link to send. many will simply unlock their badge and leave. it holds no motivation for those who realize they have no chance at ever unseating the mayor. Some may stay long enough to make a purchase. or no responses you for RSVPs to your Swarm Badge event. offering a special only for the mayor—at the expense of one that entices the masses—may not be the best use of the power of your specials. and others may come back. there are other creative ways to use existing badges to drive traffic.4squarebadges. But if you’re looking for check-ins that result in dollars in your cash register. Because just being the mayor is often reward enough. In addition.14 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare tip Use a site like Twtvite (twtvite. While you hope that people will actually spend money at your business. the more valuable the reward is for becoming a foursquare-badge-list/. the more likely people are to cheat by checking in without making a purchase. . Good luck with that. and you’ll know how many yes. Scrolling through the list and seeing how those badges are awarded may either provide you with opportunities. The Super Swarm Badge requires a crowd of 250. The complete list of foursquare badges can be found at www. While it can get a small handful of people locked in a passionate battle for the title. If you’re the type of business that typically rewards loyalty. or fuel your creativity to use badges as a way to drive traffic as badge hunters add to their collection. you may consider doing what one bank chain did when they decided to find the mayors of all of their 44 branches and give them a gift certificate from a local restaurant chain. Reward Your Mayor Rewarding a mayorship is a special that should be considered cautiously. Keep in mind the fact that checking in is usually all that’s required to unlock badges. Even though it’s not likely that Foursquare will ever give you your own badge to award.

think of dedicating one as a computer monitor and have it display all the tweets about your business. But it’s still good business to find people and invite. too. Make sure you publicize your specials on your website. Sites like Twitterfall (twitterfall. consider . While people inside your business will get excited to see their tweets on your wall. and Facebook page are all great brand reinforcers. A recent change in Foursquare removed the display of people who recently checked into venues. If the style of your business is to have widescreen TVs on your walls. or compel them to come. Twitter follower list. Later. you may want to consider seeing who is checking into other nearby venues. and Facebook page. they will allow you to configure a search that will show all tweets that include your business name and your foursquare check-ins. When you see those tweets. Spread the Word Go back to the Foursquare. Twitter activity. they’ll be providing you with free advertising to hundreds or thousands of their followers. The social media community tends to patronize businesses that are active in that site and click on the “Find Friends” link in the top menu. Trawl for Customers While you want to be concerned about people checking into your venue. so people know you support Foursquare. but they may first check out your profile. You can also set up searches to see who is checking into your competitors’ or neighbors’ venues. Seeing a tip from you inviting them to your venue. inspire. Twitter. They may just accept your friend request. even more importantly. I’ll show you how to set up a search to see who is posting checkins at your venue to Twitter. with a link to your profile. with links to your website. and Facebook friends and will send them an invitation to become your friend on Foursquare.15 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare Driving Traffic to Your Venue If you build or Visible Tweets (visibletweets. Use Social Media Put a link to your venue on your website near all your other social media icons. Options there will allow Foursquare to check your Gmail address book.

. and you get the traffic. create specials. Foursquare may or may not produce a return that justifies the investment. edit venue info.. Statistics available include recent (and all) check-ins and top visitors. and get half off your first drink. and the gender breakdown. and add employees. you want to make sure your efforts are producing results. and which is just trivial. You can decide which of the information is valuable. Your top visitors and most recent visitors are listed. last week. Here are a couple of ways for you to see how it’s working for you. if you’re a restaurant or nightclub with a concert hall or theater nearby that gets lots of check-ins. You can display results from today.16 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare replying to the tweet and offer them a complementary or a more competitive incentive for checking in at your venue. Managers can see venue statistics. Foursquare will always use that same link anytime anyone tweets that they’re at your venue. You may also want to talk to nearby businesses that are complementary to yours. Employees can only see the statistics. the percentage of people who posted their check-in to Facebook or Twitter. Once it’s posted. show them both your check-in here and there. Foursquare embeds a link to the venue page that starts with http://4sq. When someone checks in at a venue and wants it to post automatically to Twitter. and allows Foursquare to post that checkin on Twitter. Monitor Check-Ins at Your Venue While your dashboard can display recent check-ins. check in at Jack’s Bistro. and you can graphically see when people are checking in by date and time of day. Understand Foursquare Venue Stats You have access to a bunch of statistics about check-ins at your venue via the link to “Venue Stats” at the top of your venue page. and a bunch of time frames in between. com/ and then adds a six-character ID at the end.” They get to offer a special that doesn’t cost them anything. Twitter also gives you a great way to see who’s at your venue right now by letting you create a notification that tells you whenever someone checks in at your venue. For instance. why not suggest that they create a special for their check-ins that will be redeemed at your venue? Something like “After the show. all-time. It’s a win for everyone! Measuring Your Success As with everything else you do for your business. 1234 Main St.

or Mixero to monitor your Twitter account. Engaging and rewarding those people creates some potentially great and highly visible public relations. you can create a column that searches for and displays all the Tweets with that link. While you may come up with great ideas of your own. go to search. you can even set up a search to send you an e-mail whenever someone checks in. Hootsuite. Warning Typically only 10 to 20 percent of all check-ins are posted on Twitter. If people have been checking in and tweeting about it. If you use a tool like Seesmic. While you can measure check-ins. but keep in mind that the ones on Twitter are not only letting you know that they’re at your business. Don’t ever use those posts as an absolute measure of the number of check-ins. You’ll know who has checked in at your venue and broadcasted that fact on setting up an internal system to keep track of purchases related to people who redeem specials may be the best barometer of all. you’ll see the short Web link. Of course.tweetalarm. they’re also letting all their followers know. Tweetdeck. Your dashboard will be the most accurate and complete record of who has recently checked in.17 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare To actively monitor those Tweets. Here are just a few examples of how businesses have been using foursquare to great and search for tweets that contain http://4sq. How Successful Businesses Are Using Foursquare There is no shortage of ways to leverage Foursquare to build your business. there are plenty of resources available that include tons of ideas that are already being and your venue name. as it appears on your venue page. or viral mentions about your venue by check-ins posted on Twitter and Facebook. the best monitor from a return-on-investment standpoint is the number of check-ins that result in sales. and also see when your mayor is ousted by someone else. Your Most Important Measurement Not everyone has their Foursquare account set up to post their check-ins to Twitter. By using a site like Tweet Alarm (www.twitter. . so you won’t see everyone who’s checking in with this method.

and that Foursquare would be giving fan-favorite local businesses an opportunity to award those badges to check-ins at their venues. resulted in over 230 check-ins. It’s not uncommon for Joe to notice a customer’s Foursquare check-in at one of his restaurants and have the manager-on-duty find them. his burger joint. lots of cross-promotion. earned by checking into three different TLC-selected restaurants. While all of his establishments benefit from his mastery of social media tools. a creative idea. “I’m on a Boat” with their check-in to their Twitter and Facebook accounts. But an even bigger event was his “I’m on a Boat” event. the Cupcake Connoisseur Badge. and the BBQ Pitmaster Badge. say thanks. the world’s largest music festival.000 seat Bradley Center and Summerfest.18 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare AJ Bombers Restaurateur Joe Sorge is legendary in his use of social media to promote his four establishments in Milwaukee. the landlocked restaurant couldn’t legally tag their restaurant as a boat. earned by checking into three different TLC-approved cupcake bakeries. Of course. and huge day-of-event social media buzz. virtually built itself on the shoulders of Twitter and Foursquare. AJ Bombers. and offer a complimentary dessert. where the Milwaukee Brewers play. Behind only Mitchell International Airport and Miller Park. so people could literally be “on a boat” when they checked in. . Not everyone knows that they can win the “I’m on a Boat” Badge by checking into a venue that is tagged “boat” and using the “Shout” feature of Foursquare to post the phrase. Wisconsin. AJ Bombers boasts more check-ins than any other venue in Milwaukee. A badge. so they teamed up with a local sporting goods retailer who agreed to bring over a kayak. by building relationships with both existing and prospective customers. which would be unlocked just by checking into a TLC-selected summer-fun location. TLC In spring of 2009. AJ Bombers was the first venue in Milwaukee to have enough people check in to earn a Swarm badge. the cable network TLC began to promote the fact that they would be awarding three new badges to celebrate summer. including the 20. and the best sales day in the restaurant’s history. The three badges were the TLC Summer Badge. He also rolls out new menu items with invitation-only events where influential guests check in and post photos and comments about those items on Twitter.

www. customers would present their card and accumulate points only for making purchases at the stores. blog. Ask about all the new Smoothie flavors!). But recently they have integrated Foursquare (along with Facebook and Twitter) into their Tasti-Rewards loyalty card program. a password-protected site. they’ve offered specials (Show that you’ve checked in and receive $2. to manage their account and authorize Tasti-D-lite to log in to their Foursquare account for the check-in. Tasti D-Lite also uses the post to include a link to a printable coupon. with links and forms that go directly to Foursquare—Foursquare’s searchable official support site. and Tipitina’s in New—Blog site with all the latest news about Foursquare for users. with a member-chosen message.foursquare. Information is grouped by categories. Bar-B-Q in Atlanta.19 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare Hundreds of businesses began to rally their fans to nominate them on TLC’s Facebook page. Members use—Foursquare’s official blog. Tasti D-Lite Tennessee-based Tasti D-Lite is a 44-location chain of ice cream shops that has begun to embrace Foursquare in a big way. and developers. But using new technology offered by their point-of-sale vendor.foursquare. businesses. Resources support. .com—A blog site with all the badges ever offered by Foursquare and how they are unlocked.00 off any size Smoothie. to small businesses like the Pancake Pantry in Nashville.4squarebadges. Selected venues ranged from large ones like the Smithsonian Institute. All the latest news straight from the Foursquare staff. Foursquare check-ins would be done by visitors with their mobile devices. The World of Coca From very early on. The check-in can also be shouted on Twitter. and visually verified by the person at the check out. aboutfoursquare. Fox Bros. Previously. and the Lincoln Park Zoo. scanning that card now also automatically checks visitors in on Foursquare and earns them additional loyalty points for doing so.

95 The Complete Idiot’s Guide® to Facebook Joe Kraynak and Mikal Belicove 978-1-61564-036-2.95 . $19. $19.95 The Complete Idiot’s Guide® to Target Marketing Susan Friedmann 978-1-59257-903-7.20 The Complete Idiot’s Mini Guide to Real-Time Marketing with Foursquare Additional Reading The Complete Idiot’s Guide® to Social Media Marketing Jennifer Abernethy 978-1-59257-989-1. $16.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful