Foursquare is a mobile app that encourages users to get out and explore the businesses in their neighborhood. Now the company is planning something called Foursquare for Business, which will let shops and restaurants reward their most frequent customers. In so doing, Foursquare may have hit upon a local advertising goldmine.
Here’s how it works: Foursquare tells your iPhone (or other smartphone, via its Web app) that there’s a good deal down the local pub. That place happens to be your number one hangout; you’ve been there 10 times this week already. That means two things: you might qualify as a « mayor » of that pub, the Foursquare term for most-frequent customer. It might mean, secondly, that you have a drinking problem. Regardless, being a mayor may entitle you to a free beer; just show your phone to the bartender.
Foursquare for Business takes this functionality and puts it in control of the local business owner. You can use it to run promotions, reward regulars, and track customer loyalty. Check out more on the company’s blog; this may be a service that explodes in popularity, thanks to Foursquare’s already aggressive growth.