My straw poll, conducted on foot recently, reveals a surprising, to me, absence of either awareness of or interest in Facebook’s mobile Check in feature among bricks & mortar operations. For those not immediately familiar with it, in the mobile news feed, Check in is the third of three options across the top of the feed.
Whether you’re inside or out on the sidewalk, choosing check in brings up a list of nearby businesses, attractions, and so on, any of which you may click to select. And it's important to know that you may search by name for a location if it isn't on the list. Adding text is optional. When you post, Facebook’s distribution algorithm determines who and how many of your friends will see the post. So a check in, with or with comment, is essentially an advertisement for the site. I checked in to a burger bar I much enjoyed. When I saw the post I noticed that 495 others had done the same before me.
I did some quick calculating, based on an average of 200 friends per user and a 15% organic reach. The result is close to 15,000 free ads, likely posted to the restaurant’s target market. Facebook offers free signage, into which you can type your own Facebook URL before printing.
In the window, on the counter a free sign gets you free advertising. So I’m on a mission to build business one neighbourhood at a time by getting the word out. I’ve also written a post with several other free or nearly free options for using mobile to build your business. You can find it here. And when you need advice or action on social media marketing, you can find us here as well.For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.