Years ago, I was taught the three most important success factors in retail are location, location, location.
In the not-too-distant future, the same thing may well be said in the world of digital marketing—geolocation is poised to create a tectonic shift (pun intended) in the way we think about engaging our customers.
Foursquare and Gowalla may have started this phenomenon, but Facebook’s recent announcement will take it to a new level. Facebook has introduced a new feature called “Places” that brings the Foursquare idea of check-ins to the nearly 500 million Facebook users. Even more importantly, Facebook Places provides a platform for third-party application providers to easily develop rich location-based features.
From a marketing perspective, there are few things more relevant than someone’s location. This has been the Holy Grail of marketing. But it wasn’t until Foursquare found a fun and permission-based approach to determining location that the opportunity for marketers really took off (for more on the power of permission, see my recent post on behavioral marketing). Now, with Facebook providing a far-broader and easily accessible platform, the opportunities are about to become boundless. Let the fun begin.