Where are you, and who knows you’re there right now?
With location-based services such as Foursquare and Gowalla, your whereabouts can be discovered and tracked in an instant. Pew Research recently conducted a survey that concluded about 4% of the 3,001 recipients surveyed showed that they used social networking sites consistently while 8% of them used location-based services on a daily basis. Many social networking sites are introducing the location icon as a new feature, and is becoming very popular with Foursquare, Facebook and even Twitter. So who are these people that want to know a person’s daily moves?
With the elimination of the obvious stalker-type undertones there, some of the benefits of a location-based service would include parents who want to know where their teenagers are. It could also be used amongst friends when they’re deciding where and when to meet to hang out before the big game. The survey also found that the services were more popular among men than with women within the 19-29 age group polled, and all for various reasons from personal to professional.
However, for the business population, location-based services can be a huge marketing component to help them get new business and grow their existing businesses. Firms that offer deals and savings on their products and services may find that people are more inclined to use those location-based services if they will get a deal.
So how can it increase a customer base? The owner of FT Internet Marketing, Frank Reed, wrote in a post to Marketing Pilgrim that it may be a challenge for people who have never used a location-based service before to become acclimated to the idea of using it. However, over time, and with the right marketing motivation from companies, they can become repeat customers just by using the service and its features in a social networking environment.