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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tons of great ideas for making the most of foursquare
What the book covers:

The "seven keys" follow the acronym CHECK IN (groan), and are as follows:
Connect your brand.
Harness new fans.
Engage your followers
Create rewards.
Knock out the competition.
Incentivize your customers.
Never stop entertaining.

Each key gets its own chapter, and provides a TON of ideas for...
Published on October 2, 2011 by The Local Cook

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars fad or merely nascent?
Some things are fads and some things are merely nascent, and rare is the marketer who can tell the difference when it matters. Who among us did not pitch facebook concepts to advertisers who'd never heard of it, didn't understand it when you explained it to them, and didn't want to be a part of it when they did understand it. And then Aaron Sorkin writes a movie and Mark...
Published on November 14, 2012 by Them


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tons of great ideas for making the most of foursquare, October 2, 2011
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
What the book covers:

The "seven keys" follow the acronym CHECK IN (groan), and are as follows:
Connect your brand.
Harness new fans.
Engage your followers
Create rewards.
Knock out the competition.
Incentivize your customers.
Never stop entertaining.

Each key gets its own chapter, and provides a TON of ideas for harnessing the power of foursquare that are applicable to nonprofits, brands, brick and mortar stores, and more. Real life examples as well as "why it works" are included in every chapter. Every few pages I found myself wondering "hmm, I wonder how I could . . . " and going back to the foursquare website to figure out how to implement the ideas that were swirling in my head and apply them to my own business.

The book was well written and easy to follow, if a little light in the technical implementation side of things. That is probably better, because it's easy to get bogged down in the details of how the app works and forget the strategy behind it. You could spend hours (one business owner spent six months!) learning how to set up the technical side, but the key thing is to remember your goals. That way you can prioritize, because social media in general, while powerful, CAN become a big time suck if you don't have a plan of action mapped out. In fact, one of the last chapters includes a list of pitfalls to avoid. I think the last item on the list is the most important:

"Avoid 'Doing it just to do it.' Many businesses . . . create social media pages and promotions with no clear objective. They do it just to do it. They are joining out of fear instead of joining because they are passionate about engaging their customers. This apathy shows up in the form of lukewarm specials, poor execution, little or no training, and bad customer service."

If you are already using social media and social location marketing, this book will give you some creative ideas that you probably haven't thought of.

If you are brand new to the whole concept, it will give you an idea of what you are missing. If you have no time to spare, my best advice is to at least claim your business or brand now so that you can see what existing foursquare users are saying about your business, who's checking in, and to make sure that your business' name and contact information is correct. Then carve out some time to figure out how to put this practically free marketing tool to work for you. (I say practically because time is money, after all.)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The future of local business - Social Business, October 30, 2011
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
Length:: 2:19 Mins

The future of local business

I was hooked by the first chapter. Carmine is a superb writer, not simply creating a book but skilfully immersing the reader in the content and the solutions to your inevitable questions.

This book is not what I expected. I thought it would be an overview of one of the growing social media tools, Foursquare. In fact, this book is a marketers masterclass on how to use location based services for marketing, provision of proven campaigns, marketing tips, local engagement principles and how to get Foursquare to do it all for you!

What is Foursquare? Well Carmine describes it as:

-It's a social, local, and mobile networking tool.
-It's a location-based social network.
-It's a geolocation app.
-It's a game.
-It's a communication tool.
-It's a new social-media marketing platform.

Not only does he then prove each genre, the then provides case study after case study. The brilliant thing about it though is not that he provides case studies but the manner in which he shows you multiple ways to instantly utilise Foursquare for local engagement and business with pre-tested campaigns. Fantastic.

This book has helped our business significantly but even more significant is the immediate results it has had for our clients and their local business.

I thoroughly enjoyed the book and recommend it to the following:

-Business owners
-Managers
-Entrepreneurs
-Social media managers
-Marketers
-Executives
-Teens
-Adults
-Retirees
-Technical professionals
-Travellers
-Tourism providers
-Government agencies
-Risk Manager
-PR agents
-Consumers
-Travel Industry providers

Tony Ridley
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Comprehensive How-To Guide to foursquare, October 19, 2011
By 
Steve Amoia (Washington, D.C.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
"As a proud Italian I was familiar with Hoboken as the home of one of my boyhood heroes, Frank Sinatra, as well as the legendary Feast of San Gennaro (the patron saint of Naples). But other than its Italian and musical legacy, my surroundings where unfamiliar to me... Before heading to the train station, I opened my foursquare account. With that simple act, my smartphone turned into a personalized tour guide." Page 46, Carmine Gallo.

The innovative nature of foursquare had such a strong impression on Mr. Gallo that he decided to write a book about them.

Organized, Detailed and Well-Researched Format

There are sixteen mostly concise chapters, detailed notes and index sections, along with a bonus interview with the foursquare co-founders, Naveen Selvadurai and Dennis Crowley. The author writes in an enthusiastic, positive and informative style. You continually sense his personal engagement with the topic which makes the book an entertaining read despite its detailed nature.

Innovative Features

Each chapter has "Checking In" blocks to provide actual user examples. Another useful feature, "Unlock The Power" summaries, assist the reader to highlight key concepts. I also liked something that was aesthetic in nature: Page numbers are encircled and appear in the middle of the page.

Enlightening Case Studies and Interviews

One facet of this book that I appreciated was the number of diverse company profiles, along with targeted interviews, compiled by the author. From a matchmaking service in New York City, Agape Match, to Mike's Bikes in Northern California, to the PYT burger joint in Philadelphia, you will see how individuals and companies make personal connections with foursquare. These case studies emphasized the practical advice provided by the author and were some of the most salient features of this book.

Notable Quotes

"Sixty percent of all mobile Internet usage is now spent on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter." Page 11.

"We started the service in a playful way to make cities easier to explore. Everyone, young and old, can fall in love with it." Naveen Selvadurai on page 30.

"When you talk to these merchants you find out that they care about two things: retention and acquisition. They are asking themselves, how do I get customers to walk in and how do I get customers to return. Foursquare can help you with both." Page 58

"It costs seven times more to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an existing one. And studies have shown that 20 percent of your customers contribute 80 percent to sales." Tristan Walker of foursquare on Page 107.

"Foursquare is growing at a faster rate than Twitter did at similar stages." Page 111

"Competition, especially in the restaurant industry, is fierce. Your customers are easily wooed. Foursquare specials give your customers a reason, and incentive, to enter your establishment instead of another." Page 166

"Sixty-four percent of respondents said that in the past 12 months they had left a store because service was poor." Page 231

"I think merchants appreciate the fact that once you claim your venue and we verify it, you get access to all the stats on who's coming to your place and when." Dennis Crowley on page 244.

"Foursquare gets you off your couch or your computer and encourages you to explore your world. Many other social networks are about being behind your computer screen or TV." Naveen Selvadurai on page 249.

Check In and You Likely Won't Check Out

This is an integral and comprehensive book to understand the ins and outs of a growing mobile social media platform. As in the famous "Hotel California" lyrics by The Eagles, "You can checkout any time you like, But you can never leave!" As the author concisely states on page 111, "So when it comes to checking in, you'll be making a big mistake if you check out without giving it a chance."

Please Note

A McGraw-Hill representative provided me with a complimentary review copy of this book. I was not monetarily compensated for the review by any party that would benefit from a positive analysis.
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5.0 out of 5 stars good book, July 12, 2014
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
good if youre into foursquare. very informative on how to maximize its use
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3.0 out of 5 stars fad or merely nascent?, November 14, 2012
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
Some things are fads and some things are merely nascent, and rare is the marketer who can tell the difference when it matters. Who among us did not pitch facebook concepts to advertisers who'd never heard of it, didn't understand it when you explained it to them, and didn't want to be a part of it when they did understand it. And then Aaron Sorkin writes a movie and Mark Zuckerberg tours Wall Street, and suddenly every CMO is screaming that they wanna be liked.

That's why books like Carmine Gallo's "The Power of Foursquare" are appealing - because they provide the kind of down-to-earth explanations and examples that you can hand to your CMO or VP of marketing and say "Look, check out the case studies. Skim the possibilities. Review the month-over-month growth." I'm not saying this book will make him buy your ideas; I'm just saying it could help him stop looking at you like you're speaking a rare Klingon dialect when you pitch them.

To make the case for foursquare, Gallo (for the rest of this review, please see theagencyreview.wordpress.com/foursquare)
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4.0 out of 5 stars CHECKIN - an acronym that simplifies, November 29, 2011
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
I liked Gallo's book on Steve Jobs Presentation secrets. I like this one even more. He is a good writer. He simplifies concepts which makes them easy to remember and absorb.

I often try new technologies. Some I stick with and others I drop as "not for me". Foursquare is one I dropped. Perhaps I am not the right demographic. I thought it would not go. So much for predicting the future.

The Power of foursquare explains the success of foursquare - 0 to 10,000,000 users in 2 years.

Gallo creates an acroymn - CHECKIN to explain how companies should connect with with people where they are:

Connect your brand
Harness new fans
Engage your followers
Create rewards
Knock out the competitors
Incentives your customers (seems a bit of repeat of create rewards)
Never stop entertaining

Gallo explains each step with interesting case studies. I particularly liked the case study about a nonprofit that raised $50,000 using a "check-in" campaign.

Good book. Worth the read.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A semi official owners manual and marketing for four square, November 27, 2011
By 
Mark P. McDonald (Chicago, IL United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
Gallo's The Power of Foursquare is an unabashed and descriptive support for Foursquare. The book is loaded with positive explanations of Foursquare and how it might be used to generate revenue, satisfy customers, or help employees be more productive. The book contains helpful descriptions of how you should use Foursquare but it lacks balance as the descriptions and examples are decidedly positive and in favor of Foursquare. The one sided nature of Gallo's analysis and chapters limit the books value in terms of understanding the do's and don'ts of location based marketing.

Strengths

Detailed discussion of Foursquare, how it works, how people use it.

Case examples of Foursquare applications that describe how people use the technology

Providing a repeatable framework CHECKIN which reflects the actions involved in using Foursquare.

Challenges

The book is somewhat unbalanced discussing the positives with limited discussions of the challenges and pitfalls of location based marketing

There is limited discussion of implementation or operational issues. For example the terms security or privacy does not appear in the index

The book looks to market Foursquare more than anything else. That is a challenge if you are looking to learn more about mobile and location based marketing

Overall the reader should understand that this book's discussion begins and ends wih a single application to the exclusion of alternatives. There is nothing wrong with that but it's important to know in making your decision to invest your time in this book. It is very one sided but that will be just what you want if you are looking to use only Foursquare as your mobile marketing platform.
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5.0 out of 5 stars So why should an organization care about foursquare? Find out here..., November 20, 2011
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
Most of the books and information I've read about the phenomenon that is foursquare centers on how and why people should use it. What I haven't seen much on is how and why a business should use foursquare as an integral part of their customer relationships. That gap is now eliminated with Carmine Gallo's new book The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are. He makes a compelling argument as to why a business can't afford to ignore foursquare, complete with examples and case studies on companies that see a direct bottom-line result. Add in the fact that foursquare costs them nothing to use, and it's a no-brainer.

Contents:
Introduction - What's All the Fuss About?; Connect Your Brand; Connection Superstars; Harness New Fans; Newbie Ringleaders; Engage Your Followers; Super Users; Create Rewards; Super Mayors; Knock Out the Competition; Swarm Masters; Incentivize Your Customers; Local heroes; Never Stop Entertaining; Crunked Kings; 10 Pitfalls to Avoid; Foursquare Founders in Their Own Words; Conclusion - Your Turn to Check In; Notes; Index

Using the CHECKIN acronym (Connect, Harness; Engage; Create; Knock; Incentivize; Never) as found in the chapter headings, Gallo builds the case for the value of foursquare to any business, both large and small. Using a large number of examples from an array of various sized businesses, he shows how reaching people based on their current location and choices, coupled with the possibility of receiving rewards or special recognition, turns a normal customer interaction into a "wow" experience that builds both loyalty and buzz. Even better, using foursquare is completely free! For instance, the Corcoran Group, a real estate firm in New York, uses foursquare to leave tips and inside information on foursquare that are pushed to people who follow their company on their mobile devices. These location-specific tips are pushed to the individual when they check in somewhere. No, it doesn't directly sell a house to a customer. What it does do is establish them as an expert in knowledge about the area, which *does* translate into interest and sales when someone goes to buy a house. This type of highly focused information works for them 24/7, and costs them nothing other than the time and effort to create the tips.

Probably one of my favorite examples is the AJ Bombers restaurant in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 2008, the place was close to going under due to the economy and a lack of business. Joe Sorge, the owner, knew he had to do something drastic if he wanted to save the restaurant, but he had no budget for advertising. He decided to start using the social network tools of Twitter and Facebook to market to a tech-savvy crowd that caters to their online connectiveness. As AJ Bombers built up followers and catered to that group, things started to turn around. But when Sorge put foursquare into the mix, things exploded. Users started leaving tips for others, which lead to more people trying the restaurant. Sorge organized events around foursquare, such as Swarm parties so foursquare users could earn the Swarm badge. He had an "I'm On A Boat" party for people to unlock that badge (no, they're not on a river, and yes, it's possible). Add in special menus for the Mayor of AJ Bombers, winning a burger competition from another restaurant that had owned the title for 10 years, and wireless access points named "don't forget to check in on foursquare", and the place has been transformed into a must-visit location. They even have investors who want to take the place national. He owes most of his success to social media, and the vast majority of that is due to foursquare.

I had dropped my foursquare account a while back as I was wondering if it was really worth it. While this isn't a book targeted at the users of foursquare, it did cause me to start back up again if nothing more than to study how different companies are using the site to build their customer relationships. Either way, The Power of foursquare should be high on the reading list of anyone who is looking to connect with their current customer base and go beyond normal "advertising."

Disclosure:
Obtained From: Publisher
Payment: Free
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Power of Foursquare, October 13, 2011
By 
Sylvia Lafair, Ph.D. (White Haven, PA and San Francisco, CA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
Foursquare as the name of a company is a conversation starter. What, does it mean? In this day of businesses named Squidoo or Google, Foursquare is a solid player. In fact, it really says what it is all about. It's a new kid on the block (at least for a month or so) of social, mobile networking and location based services. If you are in a new city for a meeting or just for fun and you want to know what's hot and what's not, press a button and you'll find out the skinny on where to go, what to do.
This well researched book by Carmine Gallo gives you good reason to join the Foursquare family. Major companies including ones that span the globe and are diverse brands from The American Red Cross to upscale shoe company Jimmy Choo,from NASA to Chili's Bar and Grill have all used Foursquare to their advantage.
Gallo, a former correspondent for CNN and CBS used his journalistic abilities to ask great questions and dig for answers . His case studies are clear and make you think about how this on line tool can benefit you and your company. If you are in business in the 21st Century, this book is one to read and underline.
Sylvia lafair author "Don't Bring It to Work"
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5.0 out of 5 stars "Foursquare and seven `innovative ways' ago....", October 12, 2011
This review is from: The Power of foursquare: 7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are (Hardcover)
Frankly, I did not know quite what to expect when I began to read this book, except that Carmine Gallo may perhaps develop some of the c once pts he discussed in an earlier book, The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs. Moreover, until then, I knew nothing about the foursquare organization. As Gallo explains, "Foursquare is a social media tool that businesses of any size can use to tell their stories and engage their customers in an innovative way...Users sign up for an account by visiting [...]." At this point, I need to point out that Gallo does not provide instructions for an easy process that takes about two minutes nor is his book an operations manual. Rather, presenting his material within a framework of seven innovative "ways" (strategies, actually), he can help any reader to take full advantage of the ever-expanding, ever-increasing opportunities that foursquare offers.

"For users, the free foursquare Smartphone app allows them to `check in' to a location and to share that location with friends. It's also a game. Users who check in earn points, badges, and rewards for exploring their cities. It makes their world a more interesting place." How so a game? "Because it's meant to be fun...People like collecting virtual badges that have no meaning except bragging rights. For example, a user will unlock the `superstar' badge for checking into 50 different venues or the `crunked' badge for checking in to four different venues in one night. It's silly, right? But millions of people around the world are having a blast paying the game. Foursquare is a game. It's meant to be fun. Play along."

Personally, I dislike audience participation and have no interest in playing online games to earn badges that have no meaning except bragging rights. However, I am among those who are eager to attract, retain, reward, and (yes) delight my customers. That's what makes foursquare appealing to me. Gall devised an acronym, CHECKIN, for the seven strategies and devotes a separate chapter to each:

1. How to Connect your brand with "Connection Superstars"
2. How to Harness new fans with "Newbie Ringleaders"
3. How to Engage your followers with "Superusers"
4. How to Create rewards with "Super Mayors"
5. How to Knock out the competition with "Swarm Masters"
6. How to Incentivize your customers with "Local Heroes"
7. Why you must Never stop entertaining with "Crunked Kings"

Sure, some of the nomenclature is goofy but so what? Under Gallo's expert supervision, each reader will learn how to make effective use foursquare capabilities. Keep in mind that the smartphone app is free, can activated in about two minutes, and offers substantial benefits to almost any user, whatever the size and nature of the given enterprise may be. Well-known brands that have active foursquare partnerships include American Express, Chili's Bar & Grill, McDonald's, NASA, 7-Eldeven, Starbucks, and Walmart but as Gallo demonstrates throughout the book with dozens of examples, family-owned businesses can also achieve great success with their foursquare association by attracting, retaining, rewarding, and (yes) delighting their own customers.

Gallo concludes this amazingly entertaining as well as in formative book with a rigorous review of "10 Pitfalls to Avoid" (Pages 231-239) followed by his interview of Dennis Crowley, foursquare's CEO and co-founder. I presume to conclude this brief commentary with an observation of my own: Ultimate success with foursquare will ultimately depend on effective innovation and effective presentation. In my opinion, the person best qualified to provide the best advice in both areas would be Steve Jobs but, in his absence, the next person best qualified would be the author of The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs and The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: Carmine Gallo.
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The Power of foursquare:  7 Innovative Ways to Get Your Customers to Check In Wherever They Are
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