B7 Check In Social Media Marketing


Part of a series of Top 10 Closing the Sale Mobile Marketing Strategies

Check‑In Social Media Marketing typically involves customers checking in at a physical location such as a store, restaurant or coffee shop, often on a website or app such as Foursquare.[1] The check‑in then gets visibility on various social media sites and top customers are rewarded for their loyalty.

Check‑in marketing campaigns can reach both smartphone and feature phone users since check‑ins can also occur via a simple SMS text message. The rewards vary from freebies to simply anointing the most loyal customer as the Mayor. Participants feel like they have achieved something.

The popularity of checking in continues to grow. Foursquare currently has over 30 million users that have checked in over three billion times. Monetization of this phenomenon is not likely the right focus at this time, but rather, branding through integration with social media sites. Several companies such as Gucci have implemented Foursquare check‑in campaigns to drive customer loyalty and generate social media awareness.

QR Code and Check‑In Social Media Marketing Integration

Figure 47: MasterCard’s Check In to the Ballgame QR Code Campaign

IMAGE mastercard check in

MasterCard ran a mobile interactive marketing campaign at these displays in New York City using actual chairs from the demolished Yankee stadium. The Check In to the Ballgame campaign enabled fans to scan a QR code to check in to a seat’s location via Facebook Places.

This generated social media exposure to their friends and potentially friends’ friends. MasterCard offered a chance to win Yankees’ VIP baseball tickets as an incentive to participate.

Coupon, Loyalty and Check‑In Social Media Marketing Integration

Walgreens Pharmacy created a Foursquare coupon campaign to reward loyal customers with instant discounts upon checking in at a store. The paperless process delivers a scannable electronic coupon to the customer’s smartphone once they check in. This initiative helped to generate a half million downloads of its mobile app in a single month. Walgreens sees mobile as a key channel for building one-on-one connections with customers.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts rewards customers that check in via Foursquare with loyalty reward points and free‑night awards. Participants are also entered into a contest to win a five‑night vacation plus airfare to one of its resorts. The customer that checks in the most globally becomes the Mayor, entitling them to be showcased on Starwood’s or Foursquare’s websites.

TV and Check‑In Marketing Integration

Check‑in marketing could also involve checking in while watching a particular TV show or commercial. Viggle is a loyalty program to reward consumers that check in while watching their favorite TV shows, transforming the TV viewing experience. Viewers earn points by checking in, and those points can then be used to get free products and services from companies such as Amazon and Starbucks. This capitalizes on the trend of people using their mobile devices while watching TV.

QR CODE  JIMMY CHOOWatch the Video: Check-In Social Media Marketing Campaign – Jimmy Choo: Jimmy Choo implements a Foursquare Treasure Hunt. <goo.gl/7Ejjw> (Duration: one minute)

QR CODE YELP CHECK IN OFFERWatch the Video: Check-In Social Media Marketing Offers – Yelp: How to create a Yelp Check‑In Offer. <goo.gl/5atKS> (Duration: two minutes)

The Transition from Manual to Automated Check‑In Social Media Marketing Customer Interactions

The examples above all require customers to manually check in. But imagine automating the check‑in process. A check‑in could automatically occur when the customer’s smartphone detects (via GPS or other technologies) that they have entered the store, bank branch or other location. That could also automatically trigger a social media post, getting exposure on each customer’s social media network, reaching friends and friends of friends.

Challenge Questions

Check-In Social Media Marketing Strategies: Does a check‑in social media marketing strategy make sense for your organization, and if so, how could you implement it? How can you move from manual to automated check‑in social media marketing campaigns?

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