Over the last year, Foursquare has been actively buddying up with the daily deal players. Groupon, LivingSocial, Gilt City, AT&T Interactive, BuyWithMe and Zozi all provide their daily deals to Foursquare. And today, Atlanta-based Scoutmob joins the ranks of deal sites partnering with the check-in champion, as Foursquare will today begin offering Scoutmob’s 50 percent-plus discounted deals in 13 U.S. cities from the within Foursquare’s mobile apps.
Foursquare CEO Dennis Crowley has said before that he thinks daily deal companies are version 1.0 of the tools merchants will eventually use to drive foot traffic to their stores. But, while daily deals are hot and companies are adopting them, there’s obviously no use in resisting. The more daily deal sites that Foursquare partners with, the more localized and nearby deals it can display to its mobile users.
The next step, Crowley said, is for Foursquare to become focused on what has long been seen as Groupon’s weakness: Loyalty. Through badges and check-in specials, Foursquare is beginning to focus more aggressively on loyalty. And with the startup’s growing dataset that captures user check-ins, where they’ve been, what destinations they’re visiting most frequently, the key will be for Foursquare to let merchants access its data to segment their customers. As Erick has said in the past, to be successful Foursquare has to find a way “to close the redemption loop between an offer and a purchase”.
The new partnership with Scoutmob is a good move for Foursquare because users can redeem Scoutmob’s deals without ever leaving the Foursquare app. Scoutmob’s formula also means that no payment is required to find deals spontaneously (their deals are free), as Scoutmob doesn’t require a credit card or cash upfront, the user simply pays the merchant, and Scoutmob receives a flat payment once deals are redeemed.
For Scoutmob, which was founded last year and is still a relatively young player in the deals space, this is a big win, because it gives the startup a national platform. Through Foursquare’s some 10 million users, Scoutmob can now leverage that brand recognition to begin signing up more restaurants, which is the startup’s specialty. The startup’s editors offer users tips on what kinds of food to order at local restaurants, what owners to interact with, etc.
With Foursquare on iPhone, Android, Blackberry, and Windows, Scoutmob now has the opportunity to reach a whole new set of customers through each of the big mobile OSes, giving the local businesses they highlight a new shot at customer acquisition. For the Atlanta-based startup, which has some 800K users to date, this could be a great opportunity to increase brand awareness, expand their user base, and reach a whole new set of eyeballs.
For more, see Scoutmob’s blog post here.