Since the day Social Media started to gain traction with segments other than college students, Marketing Directors everywhere have scrambled to get their piece of the social networking pie. Meanwhile, those companies which pride themselves on staying ahead of the curve, are looking beyond the current state of social networking for the next big thing.
According to some startup companies at this year’s SXSW Interactive Conference – that’s South by Southwest - in Austin, the next logical step in social media is broadcasting your current location to friends and fans alike. How it works is users access the application from any GPS-enabled smart device. Once logged in, a list of businesses within minutes of their current location is populated. The user then selects the establishment they’re currently visiting from the list, and viola. That location is updated for all the network to see! Intrusive? Not according to the tool’s developers.
After all, even Twitter has updated its infrastructure to allow location-based tweeting, and users acquiesce as not to be seen lagging behind the times. So, what does this mean for your business? FREE advertising! Each time a user checks in, the business gains visibility within that network. Imagine the value in knowing how accessible your location is to customers, or using that insight to strategically place signage, promote specials, etc. The possibilities are endless. Chip Hanna of the Fort Worth Business Press put it best, “While many businesses still struggle in the new, social world, location-based social platforms add yet another dimension to the myriad of new possibilities for customer engagement.
“It’s true that not everyone will see the value of checking in. However, they will if they’re getting something in return. It’s our jobs to make sure what they’re getting is as valuable as what they’re giving up. And any Marketing Consultant worth her salt will tell you that location is key. You want to be everywhere your competitors are and, more importantly, everywhere they aren’t.