In this field and in Columbus, the American Marketing Association is a powerhouse professional association. For individuals interested in the field, or looking for an engaged and involved group to join — this might be the one. One of the aspects that I’m particularly fond of are the Shared Interest Groups or SIGs. SIGs help members find a place with individuals that share common concerns within the larger field. The Columbus AMA features SIGs on Health Care, Business to Business marketing, Non-Profits and those In Transition.
The Cool Kids
A newly developed group is the Social Media SIG, collaboratively started nearly a year ago by Sandy Blanquera, founder and CEO at Social Boomerang. She assembled a fantastic team of social media types in the area including, Tom Williams, President at InnGage, Jason Velliquette, marketing professional at PeerAssist, and Christy Williams, Principal at VividPointe Interactive. I’ve been fortunate to be involved with this volunteer committee, and am looking forward to a more involved role as chair. This SIG features bi-monthly meetings on social media as it relates to marketing — and as you can imagine, there are always new and exciting topics to cover.
This month we decided to have a discussion about geo-location and mobile media apps. Geo-location apps like Foursquare, Facebook Places, Yelp and Hunch are really changing the way marketers can go about reaching consumers, learn about their interests, as well as enhance their user experience. To better illustrate how this worked, we invited Nate Riggs, of Social Business Strategies and Jeff Harper of eProximiti to debate the pros and cons of identifying your whereabouts via social media, and Juila Kinslow of Nine Dots Creative served as moderator. Nate and Jeff made some really interesting arguments about mobile media apps and geo-location as it relates to privacy, consumer experience, business strategy, and social gaming. They are two of the leading experts in the field and actively engaged in developing products — so, if you want to know more, I encourage you to contact them.
My Newest Mobile Media Bestie
My role at the event was to provide a brief overview of geo-location and some of the major players in this mobile media app game. As we know Foursquare is “the big kid in the sandbox,” and Gowalla is coming in at a “distant second” place. But what other mobile media apps are out there and what do they do? Those are the two questions I tried to answer — in 10 minutes or less. Feel free to check out the SlideShare presentation here. It’s not even close to an exhaustive list, but it can get you started in knowing what’s out there. As it stands, I’m a fan of the juggernaut, Foursquare, but have recently discovered WeReward. The app basically attempts to reward you with points for your purchasing decisions.
In true social media style — while maximizing brand exposure — the user generated content is frequently you taking a picture with your cell phone of yourself doing what you would normally do in that business, store, or restaurant. You earn points, and eventually monetary rewards via Pay Pal. A nice feature is that you can earn points carrying out these activities anywhere because of the geo-location. This means if you’re in an unfamiliar part of town, or traveling you can see a list of places around you, their point value and go from there.