Wednesday, June 30, 2010

360 Digital Influence Blog: Its all about location. But will there be a winner?

Since everyone is talking about location let’s extend the conversation Sophia started in her post “Geo-Location Is Truly Everywhere“.

It seems we at interesting point in time in location based content. One one hand you have the early pioneers of this new land Foursquare and Gowalla (I will leave Mytown on its own because of the amazing gaming experience) who are consistently gaining new users. But what happens to Foursquare and the likes when people start tapping into the API for Twitters geo location data and when Facebook checkin gains critical mass ?

On one hand the openness of API’s means all platforms can technically benefit because there is more geo tagged content. For example if Foursquare pulled in places data which was actually tagged via a tweet it would only enhance the experience consumers have while trying to oust their others as the “Mayor”.

The flip side is that the critical mass of Twitter and Facebook could mean doom for the little guys.Kind of like when the big box retailer moves into to small town America.

The advantage I see Facebook having in this space is the amount of behavioral data it collects both implicit and explicitly. This could translate into highly targeted content and very relevant offers. If there was a way to opt in for specials or useful content delivered to my mobile device from my favorite brands I would do it. The challenge with the current models is that they are only location based and not preference. This may feel like spam to some.

Assuming the start ups can extend their platforms and keep a fun gaming experience with a proper balance of rewards extending beyond a badge there is plenty of shelf space available.

Only time will tell how this will shake out but either way location based content and marketing has made great progress. It is proving to be a unique way for brands to engage and reward their most loyal customers with special offers based on frequency or prospective customers who happen to be “nearby”.

How do you think this will play out? Will there be a “winner” or Will everyone win because of broader adoption? 360 Digital Influence Blog

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