I’m a big fan of Foursquare, the location-based social media site that allows you to “check-in” to various locations from your smartphone, and have been since I began using it more than a year ago. Apparently, I’m not the only one, because users check in to venues more than 3 million times per day.
I value you the mayorships I’ve been awarded at venues I’ve checked into more than anyone else during a certain period of time, and I get a thrill out of stealing a mayorship from another Foursquare user or earning points for such feats as going to the movies a lot, hanging out near big bodies of water, or being at an establishment with more than 50 people at the same time.
You earn points as you acquire more badges for checking in at more places, and you can even offer tips to other users about locations where you’ve been. For instance, if a restaurant has a “2 Can Dine For $9.99 on Wednesday” special, you can share that with other users as a tip at that particular location. Or, if a bar you frequent offers a special, such as a free drink to the reigning mayor every time he or she checks in, that’s a plus, too. During my time as mayor of @BeerBoysWB, a sports bar in my hometown, I got my first drink of the night for free every time I was there! How’s that for rewarding customer loyalty while building a business through social media at the same time?
However, I’d be lying if I didn’t say it gets annoying when people constantly share the mundane-type check-ins on their social media sites. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve cringed looking at a Facebook friend check-in to the gas station, supermarket, or roadway again. You can see Facebook and Twitter friends’ check-ins if users choose to link their Foursquare accounts to their personal Facebook or Twitter page. While it can be fun to share with your Facebook and Twitter friends when you’re at an exciting amusement park, a cool destination location, or a new restaurant you’ve never tried, some people overdo it.
I’ve gone on a friend’s Facebook page many times to find the entire feed consisting of Foursquare check-ins. Even more so, I hate when I see them stream through my newsfeed all day long. While it’s great that check-ins can be connected to other sites, I wish some people would do so a little more sparingly.
Since Foursquare has a prompt prior to completing a check-in that asks if you want to share the update with your social media networks, I sometimes opt not to send every single check-in to my Twitter feed. On Foursquare, your friends expect to see both exciting and mundane check-ins. That’s what they signed up for. My Twitter friends; however, do not.
What about you? Do you agree that you shouldn’t send every single check-in to Facebook or Twitter so you don’t bore that particular audience? Or, do you think all is fair game in the world of social media?