How to Make the Most of Foursquare for Your Restaurant

Is your restaurant on Foursquare? If it isn’t, you could be missing out on the potential of this location based social networking site. Let’s look into how you can make the most of Foursquare and use it to promote your restaurant.

What is Foursquare?

Foursquare is a location based social network that encourages users to check in when they are visiting restaurants, bars, cafes and other establishments. It becomes a social game where friends compete to see how many places they can claim that they have eaten at.

The social network gives out rewards for checking in at many locations. For example, if you check in at a particular restaurant the most you will be declared the “Mayor” of that particular place. Foursquare also gives out virtual badges for checking into different types of businesses.

This social network offers you the opportunity to target customers in your immediate area and attract them with special deals. If you can make the most of Foursquare you will be able to tap into this potential and increase traffic to your restaurant.

Claiming Your Businesses’ Location

The first thing that you should do is to claim the physical location of your business so that you can ensure ownership of your company on Foursquare. Create a Foursquare account and search for your business. If it isn’t already on there, you can add it yourself by entering your information such as street address and phone number. Make sure that this information is accurate so that customers are able to find your business.

You’ll need to select the category that fits your restaurant best, such as nightlife spot, dive bar, fast food, beer garden, café, etc. You will them need to “claim” the venue, which you can do over the phone. An automated message from Foursquare will call your location’s number and ask for your name, the restaurant’s name and your relationship to it. You will need to enter the four digit number on your screen in order to finalise the verification of your phone number for your business.

Using the Power of Local Updates

Now that your business is set up on Foursquare, you can start to use the power of local updates. This is a feature that allows your business to send updates to a Foursquare user’s feed about deals, coupons, special events and other announcements.

Imagine one of your customers is looking for a place to eat and they are checking their Foursquare account on their phone to see what is in the area. They see three nearby restaurants that look appealing, including yours. However, your restaurant is the only one that is offering a special deal such as half price appetizers, happy hour drink specials or a free dessert. Based on this first impression, the customer is more likely to be interested in your restaurant.
Ideas for Foursquare Promotions

How-to-Make-the-Most-of-Foursquare-for-Your-Restaurant 4 promotions

So what kind of promotions can you offer on Foursquare to entice hungry customers to make their way into your restaurant? Here are some ideas:

  • Rewarding New Customers – You could offer a “new customer” special for anyone who checks for the first time at your restaurant. This will help to drive more customers through the door and if they are pleased with their experience at your restaurant they just might come back.
  • The Mayor’s Special – Whomever has checked in the most times and has become major of your restaurant should be treated to a special deal as a reward. They are your best customer, after all! This will create a sense of competition for the position of Mayor and your frequent guests will keep coming back to hold onto their title.
  • Reward Every 10 Check-Ins – Another way you can use Foursquare to offer promotions is to give your customers a special deal or a free gift every 5-10 check ins at your restaurant.
  • Limited Time Offer Rewards – Make an announcement on FourSquare that you will be offering a 25% discount to the next 25 people who check in at the restaurant. This can be a great way to drive in customer traffic on your slow nights.

These are just a few of the ways that you can make the most of Foursquare and use it to promote your restaurant, in order to bring in more hungry customers!