LBS Providers That Focus on Consumer Plans - dummies

LBS Providers That Focus on Consumer Plans

By Aaron Strout, Mike Schneider, B. J. Emerson

If you are venturing into location-based marketing, it is important to know a bit about potential location-based service (LBS) providers. These LBS offerings differentiate themselves by focusing on the notion of helping people express what they’re going to do.

  • Ditto: One of the few services that asks you where you plan to go versus where you actually are, Ditto attempts to bridge the gaps among services like foursquare and Facebook Events. It’s a service that does these two very interesting things:

    • It allows users to semantically announce their desires. In other words, they choose what they want to do from a series of categories — such as home, food, coffee, movie, exercise, and more. These can then be further honed to subcategories — such as espresso, latte, French press, tea, or the specific film they want to see based on a list of current releases in the theater.

    • Wants are then tagged with a general vicinity the user is in.

    You can monitor the service and provide users with information about products that fit their requests.

    Ditto starts with a list of popular intentions.
    Ditto starts with a list of popular intentions.
  • Plancast: Plancast allows users to announce to friends and the public that they plan to attend an event. The entire service is built around events like concerts, conferences, tweetups, meetings, sporting events, and more. The service is integrated with Twitter and Facebook, so users can announce plans to the world.

    Hopefully, Plancast will incorporate check-in services so that users can check-in to the event and venue simultaneously. Right now, it’s fairly easy for a user to make a plan to go to an event, but not actually attend.

  • Zaarly: Zaarly allows users to express very specific interests related to their location. Users tie a location to a need.

    They can say things like this: “I would like to stay in an apartment in Hell’s Kitchen for two months, and I will pay $3,000;” “I would like a cheeseburger from Bill’s Bar and Grill delivered to my hotel, and I will pay $50;” or “I would like to buy a new longboard, and I will spend up to $275.”

    Businesses and people who can fulfill the need can create a minicontract on Zaarly and perform the service or provide the product.