It was announced yesterday that Foursquare users would now be able to check into events. By partnering with ESPN, MovieTickets.com and SongKick Foursquare can now tell your social network what events will be occurring at the venue where your friend is. As of right now this feature is only available on the iPhone but developers say that it is going to be on Android and Blackberry soon.
Now, I personally don’t see the advantages of Foursquare from a user perspective. It seems creepy to me that people would want to know where you are at all times (except maybe if it’s your mom and you’re twelve). I do, however, see how Foursquare can be used as an excellent marketing tool for businesses.
Firstly, through Foursquare you can offer incentives to consumers to visit your location. If users check into your place of business frequently they can achieve certain goals on Foursquare like becoming the mayor of a particular Starbucks location. Because of this feature customers are more likely to visit places that they already like more frequently.
Another thing that Foursquare provides is information that is not normally volunteered by people their exact location at a particular time. This may seem like something that only stalkers and over protective significant others would want to know but knowing where people go at what time of day can be very useful for companies. If there is a time of day when customers are not visiting your location you could offer incentives so that they will be more likely to visit during these times.Foursquare says that this new service has been instituted because this is what they have found users are primarily using their service for. This type of adaptation based on demand is sadly uncommon on many social media sites that often wait for a third party to create an outlying service instead of developing it from within. By increasing the ease of use existing Foursquare users may increase their use of the product only increasing its value to businesses.