Internet technology and marketing

April 6, 2011

Yelp’s Check-in

Filed under: android, social media, yelp — Tags: , , — webcubic @ 11:13 pm

We installed a YELP app on our new Android phone.  We were already familiar with Yelp because we had been a user for a number of years. The Yelp app would allow us write our reviews from our smart phone.

We noticed a “check in” feature.  After walking in a restaurant we did a “check in”.  Then anyone who was “following” me knew where I ate. Truth be told, there was only one person “following” me.  Someone else explained to me that he had checked in more often than anyone to a particular restaurant and was now the “duke” of the restaurant. 

 So then the “check in” feautre was just a game.  Silly.  Why would anyone play this game?  Just to be the silly “duke” of a restaurant?  It would require returning to the restaurant and spend more money.

Then we learned that some establishments award discounts or other rewards to people who “check in” to their establishments.  Now people had a real incentive to return to those businesses – primarily restaurants at this time.  If they go often enough, they become the “duke” or “duchess”.  Or get a discount. Or a free appetizer. Or a free drink.

If you are a business owner who depends upon repeat business, could the “check in” feature of Yelp create a real incentive for your business?  Absolutely!

Here are some ways to implement this.

– for every several “check ins” to a car wash you can earn a free wash.

– for each “check in” to a restaurant, you get a free drink with your meal.

– after several “check ins” at a coffee shop or hair salon or massage parlor, you get something free or an upgrade service.  Better yet, you become a frequent shopper and are entitled to discounts. 

For every establishment that has a variation of a rewards card – YELP’s “check in” feature can do the same thing.  Because those establishments can be found on Yelp, it is more readily found.  Especially inviting would be an immediate reward for the first “check in”.  Alternatively, you could combine the “check in” with a written review.

What kind of business do you have?  What reward can you offer as an incentive to visit your establishment?  Even if you are not a “repeat business” establishment, that initial discount or free service is a powerful incentive.

If you are an enterprise reaching out to new customers and improving your repeat business, investigate the Yelp “check in” feature.

February 8, 2010

Angie’s List

Filed under: social media — Tags: , — webcubic @ 9:45 pm

For those of you who have used Yelp, you realize that it will allow you to submit your reviews of various businesses.  You realize also that if you are looking for a company that provides a specific product or service, you can search Yelp and find what others think of specific companies.

We recently heard of another Internet site, Angie’s List, that also does that.  While Yelp provides a good number of companies, Angie’s List does also.  You can check it out at www.angieslist.com.

We like Yelp better – probably because it does such a great job with restaurants and lodging.  There are also Yelp apps available for the Blackberry and iPhone. But we will check out Angie’s List in the future when we don’t get enough information in a category from Yelp – and you should, too.

February 6, 2010

Yelp – useful?

Filed under: social media — Tags: , — webcubic @ 10:29 pm

There was a recent survey to see if people really used Yelp.  Before making a decision about a local business or establishment that they did not know already, how many businesses were researched in Yelp? 

On average, customers reviewed 3 business pages before making a spending decision.

In other words, for every 3 people viewing your Yelp business page, 1 of them becomes a paying customer.

Are you using Yelp yet?

December 6, 2009

Brief: how does social media differ from traditional marketing?

Filed under: facebook, social media, twitter — Tags: , , , , — webcubic @ 8:29 pm

There are more similarities than there are differences.

Marketing is marketing, and whether you do it in the traditional manner or you use social media, the objectives are the same.  You are trying to increase your audience’s awareness of your product and you are trying to increase your business.

Social media has advantages.  It emphasizes social interaction.  Not only are you doing the marketing thing, but you are personalizing your message to the individual by the possible interactions with them.  You are establishing a relationship with members of your audience before doing business with with. This brings a humanizing element into marketing.

Social media tools that are currently being actively used with good results include (in no particular order) Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Yelp, and blogs.  If you are currently not using these, then you need to do so.

October 20, 2009

Yelp

Filed under: facebook, social media, twitter — Tags: , , , — webcubic @ 7:49 am

Yelp is a popular website where individuals can review and rate places, events, and products.  The mostly likely uses are to review restaurants, hotels, and retail stores. Before going to a restaurant or to check out what others say about it before you go, you can check it out on Yelp.

NOTE: the five most popular categories are restaurants, shopping, food, automotive, beauty and spas.

Yelp is used for and will continue to be for many other things.  There are already reviews for home services, real estate, health and medical, and pets.  This list will continue to grow in months to come.

As a business owner or manager, you need to have a presence in Yelp.  You can “claim” your business so that you can provide more information to the visitor.  Yelp is popular enough that many businesses (especially restaurants) already have recognizable “Yelp” stickers in their establishments.

As a Yelp user, you can post your honest reviews about your experience with a business or event.  While you’re at it, you can set up your profile on Yelp to send your reviews directly to Facebook or to Twitter.  This is a great way to post one time and maintain an active presence on multiple social media sites.

 Do you Yelp?

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