29 Jul 2011

Foursquare's Daily Deals Partnerships Going Live This Weekend, Including Groupon



According to reports, the partnership between the daily deals service and location check-in platform Foursquare is launching today in select locations. As reported in late May, the two companies have been in talks and it looks like an accord has finally been reached that will integrate the deals service into the "Explore" tab in the Foursquare app.
It is a big push in Groupon's push for customer acquisition, which the company spends a lot of money on, according to its S-1 it filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission to go public. Foursquare has upwards of 10 million registered users and has been aggressively pursuing daily deals a monetization efforts over the past month. The two companies will split revenue from deals acquired through the partnership.


According to Mashable, the Foursquare/Groupon partnership is now available in Chicago and should be coming to all users in the United States and Canada by Sunday. For Foursquare, that will also include the five other daily deals partnerships that that company has made in July, including LivingSocial, Gilt City, zozi, ButWithMe and AT&T Interactive.
Integration with Foursquare and other platforms could be a great deal for not just Groupon but the entire daily deals industry. Think of it like this: with six different options for deals packed into Foursquare's "Explore" tab, it seems like there should always be multiple deals within a users' general vicinity (at least in urban areas).

Groupon Now and Location Services

For Groupon, this is all in addition to its own location offering, Groupon Now, which is also live in Chicago and expected to come to all users in the near future. Groupon Now is a discovery engine for deals in an area that will ping users that are in the vicinity. The example that Groupon uses when describing the offering is of merchants having a slow period of the day (the afternoon, for instance) and offering a deal for a cheap lunch for a couple hours and pinging nearby, possibly hungry, customers. Groupon changed the privacy settings of its mobile app recently to start tracking users' location with the idea of being able to better serve its users by knowing their general location and buying habits.
Though revenue is being shared between Foursquare and Groupon, there is no word on whether data will be transferred from Foursquare to its daily deals partners. User location data is Foursquare's biggest asset and would likely be a target of any partners. Foursquare's privacy policy does state that it will share pertinent data with partners. Here is the pertinent bit from the policy:
Our Partners: In addition to the data sharing described above, we enter into relationships with a variety of businesses and work closely with them. In certain situations, these businesses sell items or provide promotions to you through foursquare's Service. In other situations, foursquare provides services, or sells products jointly with these businesses. You can easily recognize when one of these businesses is associated with your transaction, and we will share your Personal Information that is related to such transactions with that business, unless you have elected not to be solicited by marketing partners during the registration process or through the account settings page.
Will you use daily deals through Foursquare? Are you concerned that Foursquare may be sharing your location data with its six new deals partners?

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