Why are people sharing their location? What motivates customers to “check-in” and share their whereabouts with the world? Here is an abridged version of a framework I presented in previous articles that will help you understand best practices in location-based marketing.

The “7 F’s of Check-ins” Framework

The most important drive for check-in, the main F, is FIND. Under FIND, we can distinguish the 7 F’s of checking in.

  • Fun: Many check-in based social networks are games. People participate for the fun of it. The dynamic of the game is based on receiving virtual or material rewards.The 7 F's of Check-in framework for marketers
  • Fame: While this might be a subcategory of the previous F, people check-in and compete to achieve virtual status, badges, stickers, pins and other items so they can brag about and show them to their friends.
  • Friends: Making and meeting friends is another significant category. When people check-in, most applications allow the person and their friends to see who is around. The idea is to facilitate face-to-face encounters (and maybe filter people you don’t want to meet).
  • Flirt: While this might be a subcategory of the previous F, people check-in to interact with other people they don’t necessarily know. Some applications allow communication between users, giving them the option to virtually flirt with people around them.
  • Fancying: People like to recommend places they like, promoting and creating a good opinion about it.
  • Following: People use check-in based applications to keep track of places they visited, in the form of a personal diary. This category includes following yourself (looking at your traveling history) and following others.
  • Freebies: If you are not into games, or your friends do not necessarily use that app, the reason that will keep you checking in is the FREEBIES. This is finally the ultimate reason why users will keep coming back — to receive new offers, discounts, coupons, and free stuff.

As we’ll see in coming articles, this framework allows marketers to use check-in app functionality efficiently, as it help us devise appropriate tactics that address each one of these customer motivators. Keep reading: Foursquare – A marketer’s perspective and best practices.