Foursquare Makes its Play For College Campuses
Over the past year, popular location-based social network Foursquare has employed a number of tricks to get students in the habit of checking in around campus. Many schools partnered with the site to offer custom badges, tips for different buildings on campus, or even discounts at certain campus dining locations. Some schools even hosted Foursquare student ambassadors to get the word out around campus. It appears to be having some effect, with Foursquare passing 10 million registered users, and now they are preparing to double down on their campus efforts.
A recent blogpost announced the impending foursquare For Universities 2.0 program, launching in the Fall. Though the post is light on details, it seems to be focused on providing more schools with custom badges designed around university insignia. The mysterious new initiative also has a number of large universities signed up as launch partners. Foursquare also included links to Google Docs forms (really?) to sign up to be a campus ambassador, or to request your school be added to the program.
I’m not an avid Foursquare user, but I could see the appeal if lots of your friends were using it regularly. It’d be nice to see if they were gathered in the library for a study session, or stopping by the dining hall for dinner. Unofficially, wider adoption would also allow you to gauge the popularity of off-campus parties without needing to waste a cab ride. Unfortunately, I’m not sure virtual badges are going to be enough to entice a wide swath of students to get into the location game. Hell, most students I know still aren’t on Twitter.
So you tell me. What does Foursquare need to do to attract students en masse? What would it take for you to join?