Businesses May Like to Use Foursquare, But Probably Not Enough to Pay for it

Businesses May Like to Use Foursquare, But Probably Not Enough to Pay for it

By Chris Crum – Mon, 06/14/2010 – 3:30pm.

Foursquare Does Offer Opportunities, But Are They Worth Paying For?

There’s no question that there are opportunities for businesses in location-sharing services like Foursquare, Gowalla, and others that continue to pop up. There’s a good chance that businesses will be more apt to use such services to reach customers when they don’t have to pay for them.

Would you pay to use Foursquare as a marketing tool? Let us know.

Matt McGee at Search Engine Land points to some interesting stats regarding business owners and their use of Foursquare. According to these (which came from a presentation at SMX Advanced last week), only 10% of businesses that are already using Foursquare as a free marketing tool would actually pay to use it. Other stats include:

– almost 60% have a total annual advertising budget of less than $2,500 (online and offline spending)
– more than 90% are also on Facebook
– almost 90% use Twitter
– more than 90% have a web site
– almost 80% have claimed their Google Place Page; almost 40% use Yahoo Local, and almost 20% use Bing Maps as marketing tools

The thing about these “check-in” services and other location-based apps is that there is no shortage of them, and more will continue to come out, taking advantage of different aspects of the customer’s mobile experience. Where there are paid services, there will likely be free alternatives. And mobile apps offer such a wide range of uses to consumers, businesses have plenty of ways to reach them through different means.

Slides from that SMX presentation are available here.

Whether or not you’re willing to pay for Foursquare as a marketing tool, you may have a new option for using it in the not-too-distant future.

TechCrunch is reporting that Foursquare will be launching “Add to Foursquare” buttons, which would allow content producers to enable the functionality for users to add places to their Foursquare “to do” lists. This will reportedly only be on the Wall Street Journal at first, however (starting this week).

“I know that I often read about new restaurants online but never remember to put them in my Foursquare to-do list — so this makes a lot of sense,” says TechCrunch’s MG Siegler.

It will be interesting to see if other consumers agree. While the feature will only be available on the Wall Street Journal at first, the company has apparently expressed interest in letting other brands take advantage of it. How widespread that actually becomes is anybody’s guess at this point.

This could potentially help businesses in two ways. First, if you’re business is mentioned in an article, it could potentially be added to a reader’s to do list. Second, if you are the one providing the content, it could mean increased use engagement.

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One Response to Businesses May Like to Use Foursquare, But Probably Not Enough to Pay for it

  1. Hi, Charles:

    This post by Chris Crum, Businesses May Like to Use Foursquare, But Probably Not Enough to Pay for it, is certainly interesting. I agree with Chris that businesses will more likely use a service that is free than a service that must be paid for. I would suggest that if the service proved its value, users might be willing to pay for upgrades.

    🙂 GT Bulmer
    Affiliate Power Central

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