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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Beyond Foursquare: The Next Generation of Customer Loyalty - an interesting read

Beyond Foursquare: The Next Generation of Customer Loyalty is an interesting article on how location based services may be used to promote your products and services. However, the article did not mention Google's AdWords, AdSense, Friend Connect or Facebook or Twitter.

Google's AdWord has location specific option built in and all the advertiser needs to do to turn it on is indicate what geographic locations the advertising is to be served. With AdSense, all ads are served according to "theme" of the publisher's site and the geographical location of the web site visitor. Google's Friend Connect goes a few steps further with the location and "theme" specific information and combines it with the preferences and other information the Friend Connect member provides while logged in to build the user's profile. Google in turn uses these member profiles to create very powerful systems to determine what information, products or services each Friend Connect member and others are interested in.

Both Facebook and Twitter also provide location specific services to encourage customer loyalty and branding. However they use totally different approaches to Google and each other. Facebook uses PHP's built-in IP based geo-location capability to determine the member's geographical location for suggesting possible followers and services the member may be interested in. Twitter on the other hand, provides the option to geo-tag your tweets.

Since Facebook is seen as a trusted source, it's members are more likely to connect with suggested friends and use recommended services. It is possible businesses to Facebook to provide location specific services.

With Twitter, the service may not be seen as a trusted source however users may be seen by their followers as trusted sources. So when a Twitter user geo-tags their tweet about the service they received at a particular store or restaurant may impact the business.

As businesses become more social media and location based services savvy, they may want to explore all options available.

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