Foursquare for Businesses: Grow Your Loyal Customer Base
Unless you’re living under a rock, or this is your first visit to this blog (welcome!) you’ve probably realized that social media is a pretty big deal when it comes to your business. But while Twitter accounts and Facebook pages are pretty common ground for businesses, Foursquare is still in the realm of early-adapters. While some businesses utilize the service, many have never heard of it, and are still doing just fine.
So you should stop reading now and go about your life – JUST KIDDING.
Foursquare has great potential to help out any business, and because it’s still underutilized, those who do use Foursquare will stand out among their competition with the tech-savvy. Bonus points.
Wait, what is Foursquare?
Backing up: Foursquare is a geo-location based web and mobile app, used by guests to “check-in” wherever they’re at in the world. The app allows users to leave comments, tips and feedback about various locations, as well as earn badges for visiting certain establishments or frequenting certain types of shops. Plus? If you’re a business, the kind people at Foursquare have built in great features to help you out. Keep reading.
Disclaimer: you can really do no wrong with Foursquare. Because users have no real “feed” that they check, it’s difficult to annoy them. Unless of course you embed some offensive language or something into your specials, you’re probably doing just fine. That being said, like all social media, Foursquare does take effort.
Claim Your Business
First things first: you need to claim your business. Even if you don’t realize it, your business probably already exists on planet Foursquare. One of more of your customers has probably already checked in, and if you’re lucky you’ve already got some positive feedback. That’s great! Unless it’s negative, in which case, not so great. Regardless, you have the ability to claim your business, which if it’s the only thing you do, needs to be done.
Why claim your business? Well for starters, if you’re managing the page at least you can make sure all of the information is correct. You wouldn’t want your customers in charge of telling the world what your hours are would you? Additionally, Foursquare will send you an attractive sticker to put in your window, symbolizing your existence on Foursquare. Active Foursquare users will see this sticker and continually check back looking for specials.
Create Enticing Specials
Once you’ve claimed your business, Foursquare gives you a range of options for profiting from the app. There are multiple specials that you can embed into your Foursquare account, which guests can then unlock by checking in.
For example, you can launch a special for first time guests, and give anyone who checks in for the first time a free bowl of chili con queso (yum!). All they have to do is show their server/hostess/cashier the app’s “Unlocked Special” screen, and they’re submerged in cheesy heaven. Plus, free stuff makes people happy, so they’ll be more likely to come back.
Which leads us to the next point: creating repeat-customers. Foursquare has this great option where you can reward people every 3rd, 5th, 10th, 100th, etc., visit by setting up a custom special that’s only unlocked with those multiple check ins.
Imagine this: there’s a group of customers sitting together waiting for their movie to start when one of them says, “HEY! If we check in here two more times, we get $2 off popcorn! Let’s come back and use the special.”
Sound intriguing? Good, that’s how your first-time customers become regular customers.
For the Over-Achievers
Lastly, if you’re really brand-aware, you can even create your own badges for customers to earn upon checking in (Foursquare nerds love badges). These badges are especially enticing (and eluding) for businesses that don’t have a solid location, say a food truck. This forces users to first track down the business, then check in to earn their reward.
To sum things up, while Foursquare may not be as necessary or popular as it’s older social siblings Twitter and Facebook, it can still be a huge booster to your business. So bring in new clients, turn them into loyal customers, and even rock a sweet Foursquare window sticker on the front door; it can’t hurt but it can definitely help!