Photo: Tantek via Flickr
Foursquare is about to start trying to make big money.The plan: allow merchants to create coupons for the people who “check-in” to their business locations.
In a Q&A with the Wall Street Journal’s Spencer Ante, Foursquare CEO Dennis Crowley says the idea is that merchants will use their Foursquare “dashboard” to figure which kinds of customers they need to incent to come back to the store.
“One of the most fun things about the Foursquare pitch is sitting down with merchants and you can show them a stats dashboard. It shows this is the time of day people come in, here is the breakdown of male and female, here is the list of your best customers, here are some customers that used to come here a lot and don’t come anymore. It is insights they haven’t had before. The question they always ask us: How do we act on these different groups? They always want to target specific segments of those customers, whether they are new, repeat or lapsed customers. That is one thing we are getting pretty good at being able to segment out.”
Make no mistake, this is the revenue, money-making plan for Foursquare.
Crowley believes it might be so successful that the company may never have to raise from venture capital again. He told Ante:
It’s a little too early to tell. We are in a pretty strong capital position. We are actively experimenting with different ways of monetizing our data and a lot of the relationships we have with merchants. We’re due for a few more quarters of experimentation before we have to make a call on that. But I am pretty optimistic about our chances.
A couple weeks ago, Foursquare launched a program that charges merchants $10 for “instant verification.”