Check Out ‘Checking In’

18 Jan

The key to effective social media marketing tactics is to develop genuine, meaningful relationships with your followers/friends.  Some business are aware of this, yet continue to shoot out mindless chatter about new products or upcoming events because they’re not sure how to deliver a more valuable or engaging message.

So what works?

Through designing campaigns around check-ins, companies are creating awareness and attracting and engaging their fans.

Facebook Places, for example, is location-based like foursquare and allows friends to share where they have been.  It was launched in August and is quickly becoming an impressive marketing tool for businesses.

In Australia, for example, Onitsuka Tiger by Asics launched a popular awareness campaign for Sydney Bicycle Film Festival using Facebook Places.  Over this 4 day festival, there were 10 designated check-in points which were featured as ‘Onitsuka Tiger Check-in Points.’  For a chance to win a souped-up bike and Onitsuka Tiger goodies, contestants had to check-in to 3 of the 10 points then answer a question on the Onitsuka Facebook wall.

Their results?  50% of the event’s attendees checked in as soon as they arrived.
Another great interactive awareness campaign using Facebook Places was launched by the Westfield Valley Fair shopping center of Santa Clara, CA.  The goal of the campaign was to bring bodies into the mall and to promote its stores.   In exchange for checking in, shoppers receive 15-30% off coupons to specific stores.


Westfield reported their campaign to be successful and currently have over 4,000 check-ins.
These types of campaigns are effective because they’re interactive and reward their participants.  The means of using Facebook Places and prompting your fans to go to various check-in points provides a sense of adventure, while placing incentives behind your social media campaign gives your customers a purpose.

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4 Responses to “Check Out ‘Checking In’”

  1. Brad January 19, 2011 at 1:01 pm #

    Great blog Lindsey. I wish more local businesses would give these sorts of promotions a try in Nanaimo. I’ve always thought it would be a great tool for restaurants or cafes to offer coupons or certain prizes to the first person to check in each day. The medium has a lot of potential and both of your examples reflect that.

  2. lindsmaloney January 19, 2011 at 1:27 pm #

    Thanks Brad. I like that idea of offering coupons or prizes to the first person to check in each day. Perhaps even using Facebook Places as an online loyalty card by giving customers a free appetizer/coffee/coupon after so many check-ins.

    Local restaurants and cafes are perfect candidates indeed, as well as small boutiques.

    It’s such a simple and effective strategy that does not take much effort on the businesses’ behalf, and it’s beneficial for the consumer and the business– which is what makes this type of campaign great.

  3. Brad January 19, 2011 at 2:47 pm #

    Absolutely. The amount of effort and cost for the business is tiny when you look at the potential and the incredibly low risk involved. Perfect for small business.

  4. lindsmaloney January 19, 2011 at 3:35 pm #

    That’s another great point—low cost.

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