Location-based social media is really getting its first holiday shopping season this year. Just like when online shopping came onto the scene in the late 90’s, there are some uncertainties and some false starts. Will shoppers use these as effective reward / incentive platforms? Is there enough market penetration with location-based platforms for big retailers to recognize it as a real marketing asset? How will the savvy power shoppers react to exclusive specials? This season will provide answers.
I must confess—I am not a power shopper. My lovely wife and mother-in-law have braved the wilds of Black Friday for many years. Like weathered veterans of rugged campaigns, they planned during the weeks leading up. Even our five year old son plotted over his Toys R Us flyer. Packing their bags and jackets with granola bars, water bottles and other critical staples; they would venture out in the pre-dawn hours. This year, however, I (with my 5 and 3 year old boys) was brought in as a support role.
When giving presentations on the business uses of social media, I spend a fair amount of time discussing location-based social media. Foursquare, Facebook Places, Gowalla and the like. In every presentation, I have the personal security worrier. He or she says, “I don’t think it’s safe to tell people where I am.” For every person, that’s a choice—the same choice as Facebook or Twitter. For a business, that simply shortsighted.
For nearly a year I’ve been touting location-based social media and specifically Foursquare as an incredible platform for businesses to engage with everyday customers or clients. Few greater success stories exist other than Joe Sorge (@JoeSorge)and AJ Bombers (@AJBombers).
Joe published TwitterWorks earlier this year as a beginner’s guide to using Twitter to promote a restaurant—even though it was a great guide for using Twitter for ANY business. Following up with that, Joe gives us a FREE eBook on using Foursquare to build on the still growing location-based world.
I strongly recommend reading this regardless if your business is restaurants, bars, lodging, music venues, retail shops or even car dealerships. Understanding how location-based social media extends your brand’s relationship beyond your immediate sphere of influence and can turn everyday customers into raving brand evangelists.
You can download a PDF, too.
View more documents from Aj Bombers.
Everything has a brand. Everybody is a brand. A simple enough statement. Business branding versus personal branding is a hot topic and the notion that personal brands may be either eclipsing business brands or may be nothing more than inflated egos is on many lips. But what is the real essence of a brand?
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On November 11th, Signalfire had the opportunity to present to business members of the Sturgeon Bay Visitor Center in Door County. Reaching out to small businesses ranging from restaurants, hotels, bed & breakfasts and retails storefronts – Signalfire was asked to help curious business owners understand how social media can work for them. During the presentation, we had fantastic questions and great conversations. We wanted to offer a brief summary for businesses not able to attend.
We can all agree social media is a medium about interaction. Interest communities form bonds and connect with brands. We’ve already seen how this form of engagement can benefit businesses, but the game continues to change as new tools come onto the scene. With location-based platforms, game mechanics, and now rewards mechanisms we are moving from engagement to a new level of interaction—participation.
Brands have been told to engage in social media for some time. This casual, thoughtful interaction has been communication-based and now more physical interaction with location-based and loyalty programs are breaking down the barriers between the internet and real life. However a brand’s level of engagement has now got to step up.
Signalfire is announcing an adventurous social media package plan for businesses looking depart the trailhead of social media with the right tools and equipment.
Dubbed Social Media “Packs”, Signalfire looks to provide a valuable starting place for businesses who want to utilize social media, but may not have the experience or resources to get started on the right foot. Learn more about Signalfire’s new social media initiative and discover which “pack” is right for you.
Bay Shore Inn is located in the heart of one of the Midwest’s premier tourism destinations, Door County, Wisconsin. Known as the “Cape Cod of the Midwest”, the resort caters to a wide variety of guests ranging from weekend getaways to elegant weddings. Their online presence needed to share their capabilities as well as their stunning grounds.
Bay Shore Inn’s previous web presence needed a fresh design as well as the capability to quickly make changes. Signalfire created a design that gave the feeling of the great East Coast seaside resorts and even helped coordinate a summer photo shoot. The end result has been a wonderfully creative design that delivers the functions and SEO needs for their highly competitive industry.