Here we are on Episode 4 of RibbonFish’s Social Media Untangled, and this time we’re looking into Foursquare.
What is Foursquare?… Foursquare is a location-based social network, almost entirely used on mobile devices. It allows users to ‘check-in’ to their location and give a comment on what they’re doing at that moment. The app allows this status to be published across as many social media platforms as the user wishes.
Who uses Foursquare?… Currently +25 million registered users. Exact number of ‘active’ users is unknown, but a pretty substantial number. Growth has been sharp.
How can it work for business?… This is primarily useful for B2C businesses with fixed locations, such as pubs, restaurants, shops etc. The main benefit to businesses is that users can ‘check-in’ to your location, immediately sharing details of your business, its location, and the user’s activity to all their friends across  social media platforms. It is free peer-to-peer promotion, and if your business is offering something new and exciting, it’s a great place to be.
Any top tips?

  1. Offer incentives. Starbucks were one of the first major success stories in using Foursquare. Back in 2010, they offered discounts to people who checked-in at one of their stores. You can really get your Foursquare account moving by providing these deals… see it as a PR investment!
  2. Create a Foursquare page. This is a company page much like other social networks. It will become the hub from which to manage all your Foursquare locations, and allows for more branding than the location venues.
  3. Stick a Foursquare sign to your window! Seems like a simple tip, but if nobody knows you’re on Foursquare, they’re less likely to check-in.
  4. Keep it vibrant. Every month, change the Foursquare deals you are offering. A new offer gives you something new to promote, and your customers something new to talk about.
  5. “Foursquare tips” (see right). These are tips about locations / businesses left by Foursquare users. They can then recommend others to visit, or just offer interesting facts about the location the user is near. Monitoring these can tell you exactly what people think of your business, highlight customers’ favourite aspects, and show what needs to improve.

See our previous articles on Reddit, Pinterest, and Google+ for some more hints & tips on how to use these popular social networks for you and your business.
How have you used Foursquare for your business? Any comments welcome below, and don’t forget to register with us to stay updated…