BrainTrust Query: Supercharged Checkins
By David Dorf
Through a special arrangement, presented here for discussion
is an excerpt from a current article from Insight-Driven Retailing Blog.
social networks are the latest fad to hit mobile phones. Foursquare seems to
be getting most of the attention, even though MyTown, Brightkite and Loopt
actually have more users. The concept has mobile phone owners using GPS to “checkin” to
establishments, including restaurants and retail stores. Checkins are rewarded
differently by each system, but some benefits include getting location information
(maps, hours, description), reviews, find nearby friends, or receiving coupons.
There’s also the game angle for those who like to collect points, unlock rewards,
and gain status.
Retailers would like to know when someone shows up at a store.
It’s a good time to entice them with an offer, or better yet attract them from
a nearby competitor. CardStar, the mobile application that consolidates all
your loyalty cards, is now automatically performing a checkin via Foursquare
when you use your loyalty card. That marriage makes perfect sense.
(pronounced “scavenger”) is taking checkins to the next level. Retailers create
challenges for users to perform in exchange for rewards. For example, a retailer
may provide a coupon to anyone that checks into two different store locations
on the same day. Users can earn points for checkins, comments, and photos they
take of the store. Then, when a certain point threshold is reached, they get
of the program allows retailers to tailor the program to influence behavior
better than just a simple checkin. In late July, SCVNGR users were able to
earn a $10 coupon at Journeys 800+ stores by winning challenges and earning
points. These activities are meant to engage customers and have them get to
know the shoe store.
Seems to me that supercharged checkins make a nice addition to loyalty
Discussion Questions: What do you think of the potential of “checkins” tied
to location-based social networks such as Foursquare? In what other ways should
retailers explore capitalizing on location-based networks?