After the long weekend pass and I had the opportunity to summarize many of the emails and twitts received during the last weeks, I was surprised to still find new Location Based Social Networks coming to the market… not. This week I added to my List of Location Based Social Networks: Match2blue, My Adventures, Snikkr , Mizoon, Nulaz , Toai , and Glympse.
I also found a few social networks closing or going through difficult times and struggling to survive. Then I remembered last Friday I was saddened to find one of my regular lunch places out of business. I just entered the Subway next door and had a sandwich. Today I found a “coming soon” sign at the same place.
Is there any parallel? Certainly there are LBSN for many tastes. There are gourmet types of Social Networks, others that appeal the masses, some that serve particular type of people, some are for dating, some are for business, some you need certain hardware to get in, and others that are by invitation only.
The fact is that in both cases the owners invest a considerable amount of money to get in, they dream to have fun and be unique, and in some cases they understand very little about the business model and end loosing all their savings.
That’s why I tried to contact some of the companies going through difficult times, to understand their process, check if I can help, and see if we can all learn something from their experience. I couldn’t find those willing to share their struggles yet. On the other hand, I had the opportunity to talk with two of the most successful Location Based Social Networks in the market and they shared their vision and experience. This will open a series of notes, that I hope will give some perspective for existing and planned Location Awareness Networks to be.
Not long ago I had the impression this market will soon consolidate to a handful of companies. Now I have my doubts. There is place for a diversity of LBS based networks, and they are as varied as people tastes for food. Now I’m going back to the list of LBSN and I still see much of the same flavor.
What do you have in your menu, how is your business different from the others, how do you make customers to come back, and how do you build a name in a difficult industry. (Am I talking about food or technology now?). Bottom line, there is still a huge space for good marketing work to be done. Power to the marketing department!!!
If you are around here I will invite you to a good restaurant, and we can talk about business, just give me a call or drop an email I’ll be glad to help.
On a final note I wanted to have a restaurant; in fact my friends say I cook very well. I talked with a chef friend about my plan, the environment, marketing, ideas, and he said to me “You don’t understand, the money is not on the tables, the money is in the kitchen.” Yup, I didn’t understand much about their business model…