Saturday, April 16, 2011

Happy Foursquare Day

Happy Foursquare Day

Portsmouth Mayor Tom Ferrini has made it official.... but...

What exactly is Foursqaure Day, you ask?  It's a worldwide celebration of a silly smart-phone app.  I mean, errr, it's a location-based social media phenomenon!

When is Foursquare Day?  It's April 16, of course.  4/16.  4 squared.  Get it?  How can you forget? If only birthdays and anniversaries were as easy!

In my bylined piece for Mass High Tech last fall, I touted the fact that Portsmouth was the #1 city in the world (yes you read that correctly) in Foursquare Day participation in 2010.  For your edification, here's a great breakdown of how it all happened from my friends at Vital Design, and an article from the local paper for good measure. 

OK, so why do I care?  Because Foursquare poses an interesting opportunity for small business owners -- those with real storefronts, mind you -- to draw foot traffic by providing an incentive for your customers to stop in. Foursquare says so right here, to wit:
Whether you’re a national chain, a mom-and-pop shop, or anywhere in between, you can attract new customers or reward your most loyal ones by offering foursquare Specials – mobile coupons, prizes or discounts – which are presented to users when they check in at or near your venue.  
Read on here.

After initial skepticism, we're buying it. 

It's a good Buzzonabudget technique because a.) it's free and b.) set up is easy.  All you have to do is decide what kind of discount or incentive to offer.  As for c.) The Buzz, it comes from, believe it or not, virtual badges that your customers collect, and their personal egos.  You see, the customer with the most "check-ins" at a particular venue is dubbed "The Mayor," and again, believe it or not, the competition can be fierce for this high honor!

Will it build buzz for your business?  Only one way to find out!  You don't have to wait for Foursquare Day 2012... Give it a try now!  We're here to help if you have any questions about getting started.  Look at the list of businesses that participated last year and see what they did.  Then let us know how you made out... Maybe we'll even make your business a case study and feature it here on this blog.  ;-)