Social location-based services offer users the opportunity to inform their social environment immediately where they are. They offer the possibility to see if there are other friends in the building or in the area of the user and to communicate with them. In addition, social location-based services also refer to the location-based games and apps such as Foursquare, Gowalla or Loopt, which have been in fashion since 2010. The GPS-based app Pokemon-go, which connected virtual content with the real world, caused a sensation in 2016.
In retail, providers of social location-based services aim above all at customers simultaneously acting as promoters and sharing attractive offers from a shopping app directly with their contacts. However, social location-based services are most strongly represented in a completely different industry: In professional sports. In stadiums, arenas and in direct contact with fans, social location-based services display their strengths so optimally that in this case one speaks of location-based sports marketing.
Location based services in sports
The NHL (the US professional ice hockey league) has even entered into an official partnership with Foursquare. At the start of the season, the league provided those fans who “checked in” via Foursquare with tips, insider information and hints on “secret locations”. The NBA basketball league has gone one step further and has developed its own network with Turnstile, which enables virtual check-in in “real” venues as well as in TV games. Facebook and Twitter are also integrated so that users can comment on the game via both networks. Of course there are virtual prizes, highscore lists and other rewards for each check-in.
In addition, location-based services are a powerful tool for ticketing and cross-selling and up-selling measures. Because for the first time the clubs have an overview of which fan is actually at the game. And they get an overview of their fans’ demographics. With “Connected Arena” in 2017, the Bamberg-based company Favendo presented an integrated concept for stadium and arena operators that covers the needs of both spectators and facility management on the basis of sensors. Including indoor navigation, asset tracking, proximity notifications and alert functions.