The Guildford pub of the future
26th November 2010
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One of the hottest topics in the world of Social Media right now goes under the unlovely title of Geosocial Networking  - defined by Wikipedia as “a type of social networking in which geographic services and capabilities such as geocoding and geotagging are used to enable additional social dynamics”.  Don’t you just love that type of definition, where you start off trying to find out what one term means and end up going round in circles looking up three or four more new ones?

Put simply, it is where online Social Media meets the physical shop, pub, restaurant, garage…….

The two best known Geosocial networking tools are Foursquare and Facebook Places – tools that allow the user to notify his friends and the world in general (including potential burglars!) where he is at any point in time, and which enable him to get some information about the area around him.

It is easy to imagine the benefits a user can obtain; suppose someone fom another part of the country, let's call him Jim, finds himself staying overnight in Guildford, and that he's never ben here before.  Jim's hungry, and fancies a good meal in a welcoming pub.  Opening up the Foursquare app on his smartphone he can see where he is and what venues are nearby.  Finding the Cricketers in Farncombe he checks out the tips that others have left and finds that not only does it have excellent reviews, it was also the birthplace of the cricketer Juius Caesar.  Sorted.

The question marks are really around the benefits for the business owner; he might attract the odd customer like Jim but how does he turn that individual into a loyal repeat customer?  

At this stage of the development of this technology the pieces aren’t all in place yet, but it’s very easy to foresee a time in the near future where the canny landlord, Chris Clover, will be able to link together the physical presence of Jim in his pub, as announced by Jim’s Foursquare Check-In, with his POS system that has details of what he ordered last time he came, with Jim’s tweets and comments on his Facebook profile about what he thought of the previous meal.  

Armed with that knowledge, Chris could suggest a new dish that might appeal based on his earlier visit, or perhaps an ale that was similar to the one Jim enjoyed last time – he could make the whole meal a truly personalised experience.

This is the direction that Geosocial networking is heading, and it really will open up the possibilities for  business owners to make customised offers to specific shoppers to entice them to spend more and to become loyal customers.  

It’s not all there yet, but watch this space……

Martyn Stead is a Guildford-based Social Media Manager who helps local businesses use the power of Social Media to attract, grow and retain loyal customer followings. For more information, visit his website 
About the Author

Martyn S

Member since: 26th October 2011

I provide a range of services to help businesses interact with their customers and potential customers using the most common Social Media platforms (Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube). This is NOT...

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