July 30, 2010
Many of us have been on the location based app bandwagon for a while now. We use apps like Foursquare, Gowalla, and Brightkite to check in at the places we visit in order to gain badges and some online notoriety. We track where we have been, where our friends are at, and see how many mayorships we can take over and points we can receive. It was all a quasi adult game until now. Our friends over at SCVNGR have taken it to a new level.
SCVNGR, unlike the other sites previously mentioned, is not about checking in everywhere you go. Rather, you go to a place and complete a trek, take a challenge, and best yet, get real rewards. SCVNGR is not just a mobile location based app- it is a location-based mobile game. Individuals and enterprises (businesses big and small) can build SCVNGR applications and add challenges around their favorite places.
Just today, SCVNGR announced their newest feature, rewards. Now you can go to places, complete the challenges and get rewards – not just a silly badge. Although in all fairness, I have noticed recently on Foursquare that when I check in, their are establishments in the area offering “Hot Deals”. I stopped by the local Moby Dick Kabob House the other day and clicked the deal button. They were offering a trip to the mayor that also put their picture eating a kabob on the restaurant’s Facebook page. I thought that was pretty cool, but am anxious to dig in a little deeper and see what rewards we can get from SCVNGR as well. Their first national retailer to offer a reward is Journey’s, the shoe store. Simply pop into one of their 800+ locations and complete the challenge and grab a $10 off coupon.
It will be interesting to see how the rest of the apps in this space respond. Obviously, Foursquare has a huge following and could be positioned to get it’s locations to offer more deals and prizes. I am not sure it would make me frequent an establishment any more, or go to one I had not been to yet, just to get a prize, but it couldn’t hurt either.
Right now I think SCVNGR has a leg up on the pure “fun” factor over the others where you simply “check in” but that could quickly change and we will definitely keep an eye on this up and coming space.
If you are in the Boston area, please come join us for a startup breakfast at the SCVNGR office, 8 a.m. EST, 175 Second St, Cambridge, MA. The event is sponsored by SCVNGR and we are thankful for it. Hope to see you there.
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