I have an admission to make: I can’t say “no” when a cute kid from the neighborhood comes around selling coupon books and discount cards. I usually take a look at the coupons in the book, throw it in the glove compartment with the others I’ve bought and then forget to ever actually use the coupons. Savings Sidekick, a coupon book in Cincinnati, is trying to fix that by using foursquare’s tips to remind people about their coupons when they check in at locations in the book.
Foursquare provides a unique opportunity for any business to add location-based tips and reminders for their “friends” and other users who happen to see the tips in their apps. Colleges are using them to introduce prospective students and visitors to campus, while newspapers use them to highlight relevant news stories or restaurant reviews. Reminding users to use their coupons is just another creative use of the foursquare platform.
Savings Sidekick has dedicated a few pages of their book to asking users to friend them on foursquare to receive the reminders, and they’ve included a brief description of what foursquare is all about. When anyone who has friended them on foursquare checks in at or near a location that’s in the book they’ll see a pop-up tip reminding them to check the book for coupons.
For someone like me who buys the book and forgets about it, this is a great service they’re providing. In addition, they get a branding benefit each time a user who’s not their friend sees one of their tips on a venue page on the website or in a mobile app.
These tips, of course, could become spammy quickly if a company doesn’t use them with the best of intentions. Adding spam tips could be detrimental to a brand as foursquare’s typically tech-savvy users start talking about them on Twitter and Facebook. Luckily, foursquare’s new practice of sorting tips by popularity should help to push any spammy tips that do appear to the bottom of the list.
What do you think of using tips in this way? Do you have any ideas for ways other companies could use the tips for location-based reminders? Let us know in the comments. And if you’re in Cincinnati and have one of Savings Sidekick’s Cincinnati coupon books, be sure to add them as a friend on foursquare.