This blog post covers the third of three panel/sessions at GeoM, held at MIT’s NERD Center on Monday. It was hosted by Mike Schneider, SVP Director, Digital Incubator for agency Allen & Gerritsen. For highlights of the 1st panel, click here. For highlights of the 2nd panel, click here. Also, these highlight blog posts may be a bit jumpy, because they are comprised of the tweets I made during the sessions.
Dennis Crowley began by explaining that Foursquare was the successor to Dodgeball, which was a project he started while a student at NYU. He later sold Dodgeball to Google. He realized Dodgeball had a limited audience/purpose, so later designed Foursquare to appeal to a broader audience. Dennis also explained that check-ins are the beginning of the story, not the end. The data generated can be used for tons of interesting stuff.
The whole panel noted that marriage proposals as well as breakups are now happening via geolocation sites.
Jeff Holden: “Places are more semantically rich than simply location, so the check-in is what’s important because the person has decided to designate the place that they currently are.”
Seth Priebatsch: “Instead of check-ins, @scvngr is based on challenges.”
Dennis Crowley: “Local merchants are now encouraging people to check-in via foursquare. That aspect was never anticipated by us. Reality TV (Bravo etc) shows overlap nicely with foursquare because both are reality-based. Reality TV viewers can now visit and check-in to the places where their favorite shows occur.”
Seth Priebatsch: “SCVNGR’s big goal is to build a game-layer on top of the whole world.”
Seth Priebatsch also asks “What’s the social coefficient of your store’s location?” (How many people go there with friends?) “This type of metric has never been thought about before, because the data wasn’t available. Now it is. When you visit a store or a place with friends, loyalty goes up, and people return more often. It’s a more valuable social experience.”
Dennis Crowley: “Mayors are our best salesforce.”
Dennis Crowley: “It’s not about the check-in, it’s about what you do with the data/knowledge.”
Jeff Holden explained that his background is in recommendation engine from Amazon. That’s where his love for serendipitous discovery came from.
Seth Priebatsch: “The world has not yet reached its fun quota. We can make the world a lot more fun.”
Dennis Crowley: “Just checking-in isn’t all that great on its own, it’s fast becoming a commodity. We’re building things on top of the check-in; it’s what you do with the check-in that counts.”
Jeff Holden: “We’re getting to the point in geolocation where there’s enough awareness to get to mass adoption.”
Dennis Crowley: “This whole world of geolocation startups, where we’re changing the way people interact with their physical environment, is very new. It’s a really good, fun time to be exploring in this (geolocation) space.”
Jeff Holden: “We’re NOW entering the era of the location-based web, which is entirely new, and a very different thing than mobile web. The mobile web was about making the existing internet available on your mobile device. The location-based web is ushering in a new world – a context-aware version of the physical world. These are exciting times!”