For years, marketers have dreamed of connecting with their customers in the physical world—engaging them with incredibly relevant dialogues that reflect what the customer is actually doing at that very moment they are doing something. Enter location-based marketing! Among all the things customers may choose to tell us, nothing is more relevant and actionable than where they are right now.
Various start-ups have come and gone pursuing this dream. It turns out—it’s not an easy task. Believe it or not, people don’t want to be followed everywhere they go (especially by marketers)—it’s creepy! But if they invite you to come along with them, it’s a totally different story.
This became possible when Foursquare merged location into the social networking world. All of a sudden, the new idea of “check-ins” allowed people to share their location, but only when they wanted to. The idea took off and a small revolution was under way. As this idea caught on, a few innovative start-ups emerged to transform check-ins into a permission-driven, location-based marketing solution. One of the earliest and most innovative was a company called PlacePunch, founded by social innovators Adam Steinberg and Chris Glace.
With Foursquare’s recent announcement of its 1 billionth check-in, it became clear to us that it was time for Silverpop to enter this new market. We made this commitment official last week with our acquisition of PlacePunch. We’re not just welcoming the talented PlacePunch team to Silverpop, but also its impressive, and clearly visionary, customer base, which includes companies such as Dunkin' Donuts, Intercontinental Hotels and Arby's.
Everywhere you look, location is finding its way into our digital lives. Our smartphones attach GPS locations to photographs. Facebook and Twitter invite us to enter our location every time we post. Tablets bring the Internet to every trade show floor and retail store. Check-ins are the latest innovation in the location revolution. As Adam, Chris and all my colleagues at Silverpop continue to build on our vision of behavioral marketing, I couldn’t be more pleased to bring the power of check-ins and location-based campaigns to our customers.