What value do users get from foursquare


Foursquare is the pioneer of location-based services. The app uses the GPS functionality of mobile devices to determine the location of the user and to display information about local companies and institutions. The platform was founded by Dennis Crowley and Naveen Selvadurai in March 2009. In addition to a web interface, Foursquare also Applications for all common mobile devices supported by Apple, Android, Windows, BlackBerry, webOS and Symbian.

In May 2014, Foursquare Labs, Inc. announced that it would fundamentally change the Foursquare concept. Up until that point, the network was about geolocating places such as restaurants, shops, etc. to check in. The user was encouraged to interact with the platform through various playful approaches such as the "Mayortitel", which was given to the person who checked in at a place most often. Users could receive badges for their check-ins to encourage check-ins. In addition, you could create a to-do list or exchange public tips about locations with other users.

On May 1, 2014, the developers announced that the functions of Foursquare will in future be divided into two separate apps. The social component is therefore completely outsourced to a second application called Swarm. Check-in and interaction with friends are only possible here. The playful aspect has been severely restricted, so collecting points and awards ("badges") is no longer possible in Swarm, but stickers can be earned and pinned to your own check-ins. The "mayorship" was retained, but it no longer applies globally, it only relates to the direct comparison of check-ins in the circle of friends.

The Foursquare app itself remains, but only serves as a kind of recommendation catalog and thus competes with services such as Yelp. The badges collected here in the past are still displayed, but are only of archival character. The previous check-ins made via Foursquare are transferred to Swarm.

Many Foursquare users reacted with incomprehension to this step, some turned their back on it demonstratively and in a publicly effective manner.

According to its own information, Foursquare reacts to a user analysis with the new concept. It showed that the majority of the members used Foursquare either as a social network or as a catalog of recommendations, but were rarely equally interested in both functions. With the separation into Swarm and Foursquare, each of the two apps would focus on one of these user needs.

User numbers

The fast one growth Foursquare can be shown very well with the following figures: Just one year after it was founded, half a million people were using this service and 15.5 million check-ins were made in 1.4 million locations. By 2010, Foursquare will already have over $ 20 million Investor funds can acquire, which opened up considerable further development and marketing opportunities for the company. In 2010 a total of 381,576,305 check-ins were made, which was an incredible 3400% growth. In December 2011, Foursquare already had 15 million users worldwide. In 2014 Foursquare reported more than 50 million users with over 6 billion check-ins worldwide.


At the beginning of June 2012 a completely redesigned app (Version 5.0) released which made it a veritable check-in game. Foursquare had already started promoting the release of the new app weeks beforehand. The first pictures of the new app were published on Facebook and Twitter under the hash tag # allnew4sq.

The new interface was structured as follows:

In tab Explore Recommendations were automatically made to the user as to what he can do, of course these were related to the user's current whereabouts. These recommendations were based on the shouts and tips from other users as well as the checkins, tips and shouts from friends on foursquare. Different recommendations were made depending on where the Foursquare user was located. Foursquare tries to give better quality recommendations with the improved algorithm. In tab Friends All friends worldwide are now grouped together, the separation between friends in the vicinity and friends worldwide is no longer made. Friends' activities are now presented in a similar style to the Facebook timeline. Images, tips and shouts have now been given a higher weight and so this tab has become much more graphic. The user profiles have also been completely redesigned. Friends, statistics, photos, tips, badges and lists are now made accessible via six boxes. The check-in history is shown below. Also the representation of the Venues has been revised, all information about a location can now be viewed quickly and easily. The user can now quickly and easily call the stored telephone number, follow the Twitter account or have the exact route shown in Google Maps. It is now also possible to "like" a place by clicking on a heart. Similar to the social service Instagram.

Foursquare for business

Advantages and opportunities for a company
Foursquare is also gradually gaining interest for companies in Germany. More and more companies from a wide variety of industries are beginning to appreciate the advantages of being located at Foursquare. The catering industry and retail trade in particular are currently benefiting from having customers with you virtually "check in", Post photos of the company and its products and recommendations write. Companies can use so-called "Special offers" Motivate visitors / customers to get in touch with your company and now companies can even use Foursquare Advertisements switch.

Own a place
Companies have the opportunity to “take ownership” of their own company. The entrepreneur is guided through a separate area on the Foursquare page. First of all, it must be checked whether a company has already been created by another user. If so, the entrepreneur must authorize himself as the owner or representative of the company by telephone, after which an authorization code is sent to the company address. This usually takes up to four weeks. Companies in a hurry can transfer an amount by credit card and receive the code directly by email. If the company is not yet listed on Foursquare, it must first be created. As a company, I then have the opportunity to provide my customers with all the important information about my company directly and updated.

Advertising opportunities for companies on Foursquare

Foursquare specials are a sensible marketing instrument, especially for small and medium-sized companies that have a habitual shop to actually enter ("check-in").

On the one hand, this can be catering establishments such as restaurants, ice cream parlors, bars or cafes, but also retail stores that have a shop on site or service providers such as a hairdresser can use this tool for themselves and their advertising. Marketing with Foursquare focuses on everything to do with direct customer contact.

With the clever integration of the Fourquare specials into their own marketing campaigns, an entrepreneur can use a wide variety of specials to win new customers, increase sales per customer, expand customer loyalty or reward regular customers exclusively. In addition, he can use Foursquare as a kind of business card.

In order to attract new customers, the entrepreneur can, for example, include these specials in his campaign [1]:
- Swarm specialin order to attract as many customers as possible at once or groups, who then receive a discount
- Friends specialto invite a group of friends
- Flash special, e.g. the first ten get a discount
- Newbie Special for all first-time customers
- Check-in special for everyone who comes by

- Venue-specific offer: This is a local special. Here you can freely choose how you want to pamper your guests. For example, treat 20 people who are checked in at the same time to a local round

- Frequency offer: Works in a similar way to the Mayor offer. However, in this case every visitor can get a special. An example would be a hotel that offers guests a free massage every fifth visit.

- Regular customer offer: This is a special that is especially worthwhile for people who visit a venue frequently. For example, if you check-in five times in a week, you can offer a free coffee.

If the entrepreneur wants to reward his existing customers, he can fall back on these two rewarding specials:
- Loyalty Speciale.g. a discount for every third check-in
- Mayor special, At this apecial, the user who has visited a location most frequently in the past two months receives a prize

Benefits of Foursquare for Business

Location-based marketing offers many advantages for companies: [2]

- Low cost:
This form of advertising is much cheaper than, for example, print or television advertising.
- Short ways:
The local locations become more important based on the GPS coordinates of the smartphone users. If, for example, a shop is in a smaller town and the consumer receives a notification about offers specifically for this business, then he will most likely consider whether he is going to the competition in the big city or would rather come right around the corner to the advertised shop.
- Customer information:
Potential customers who browse Foursquare, check-in at the location of the advertised business, and leave comments are incredibly important customers. The insights from these comments offer the business the opportunity to improve its products - depending on what the customer reports about the business and its products / services.
- Customer loyalty:
Based on the check-ins of customers in the advertised business via Foursquare, it can thank these customers, for example, by sending them special offers and discounts. Customers usually pass these positive experiences on to friends, who could then jump on the bandwagon of location-based marketing.
- Better sales:
The incentives of special offers in the vicinity of the customer can attract them to the business and thus increase business turnover.

First company acquisition

The location specialist Foursquare took over Placed from Snap Inc. on May 30, 2019, making the first acquisition in the company's history. In the run-up, Foursquare had raised 150 million US dollars in a financing round led by the Raine Group.

Placed is a competitive product for Foursquare’s attribution solution, with which brands can measure the physical success of a digital campaign or other advertising.

Under the leadership of Foursquare, the company's new attribution product will operate under the name "Placed powered by Foursquare". The newly launched attribution solution will then have more than 450 measurable media partners, including Pandora, Snap, Twitter and Waze.

Sample campaigns

Rossmann's donation marathon
- Time frame: November 21st - December 31st, 2012
- Combination of Foursquare & Facebook app
- The distance that users covered between their home base (residential address) and the Rossmann branch into which they checked in via Foursquare was measured.
- Based on the number of kilometers between the home address and the Rossmann branch, Rossmann donated money to the World Population Foundation.
- Users were also able to collect badges during the campaign - but not on Foursquare, but within the Facebook app

- Timing: The topic of donations is very present, especially during the Christmas season. Rossmann has linked this with playful elements as well as the social media channels Facebook and Foursquare. This attracts extra attention.
- The combination of Foursquare and Facebook increases Rossmann's visibility and thus the number of fans in both social networks. On November 20th the Rossmann Facebook site celebrated 600,000 fans on January 2nd. already 700,000 fans. Rossmann was able to increase the number of fans by almost 17% during the campaign period.
- Foursquare: To make it easier for users to get started and to explain the action and the principle of the Facebook app / Foursquare, an extra video was created and posted online on Rossmann's YouTube channel. Interesting about the information video: the campaign will also appeal to new users of Foursquare.
- Budget: Rossmann has capped the maximum donation volume to € 65,000. This would have happened at 150,000 km. However, there is no information about the amount that was actually donated.

Privacy Policy

The following points are listed in the detailed data protection guidelines.
- What personal data does Foursquare collect
- How is information shared, how locations are determined and shared
- How is information shared with partners
- Definition of email communication, cookies and similar technologies
- Personal data security
- Saving the data in the USA and thereby recognizing the data protection laws of the USA
- Information on personal data
- Handling information such as deleting an account
- Changes to the privacy policy
- Contact email

Additional information on data protection is available on the Data protection 1x1 page prepared in a user-friendly way. It explains how locations are determined and made visible, how third-party providers are integrated, which information is public, etc.

There is also a data protection FAQ page Data protection FAQ page - this is currently only available in English.

Web links