Foursquare offers an opportunity for truly delivering on the promise of direct marketing, with the ability to interact with engaged customers within real time and relevant spaces. Foursquare is a location-based social networking app for smart phones. Through ‘checking in’ to locations, users can share where they are, find their friends, and pick up tips. Underlying this social engagement is a gaming element where users can earn points, unlock badges and become Mayor of most frequently visited places. For businesses, Foursquare is a new channel for connecting with customers at the right time and place. It not only enables engagement with customers on a one-to-one basis, but also encourages word-of-mouth through broadcasting users’ check-ins to all their friends in any of their social networks, effectively endorsing the location.
Air New Zealand has been quick to recognise the value of being able to engage with customers in real time and reward their real world behaviours. They also recognise the importance of continuing to evolve how they communicate with their customers in order to stay relevant. Due to the newness of this channel within the New Zealand market and no currently available statistics, it was difficult to predict what impact a promotion solely targeting Foursquare users would have. Response however has been extremely positive with unique check-ins more than doubling across all participating airports and lounges, and check-ins across the campaign period more than tripling. By giving Foursquare users an incentive for checking-in, Air New Zealand has been able to increase Foursquare usage at their venues and firmly positioned themselves within this new channel. This level of interaction with customers and analysis of interaction across their venues will inform Air New Zealand’s ongoing relationship with customers in this space and enable them to take their CRM innovation to the next level.