Twitter just added geolocation to it’s growing list of services to tweets. That’s a really big deal as 4square has been making so many waves in the last few months. I tested it and it works really, really well.
We’re seeing a lot of overlap from the big guys in social networking (or whatever you want to call it now.) Google dropped Buzz a few weeks previously and that was essentially a Twitter clone overlay to Gmail. Thing is, everyone has Gmail so they circumvented the hurdles that new services typically have in creating incentives for potential users to initiate an account. I really haven’t had time to follow it and see what the numbers were for them in terms of continued use. I can say that my friends don’t use it and there were a lot of complaints (drinking from a fire hydrant on power users, non opt in) initially. But some prominent web types thought it would halve Twitter’s value.
I don’t think so. Twitter has successfully gotten to critical mass where it’s an ecosystem for certain users. Facebook just doesn’t fill that void; it’s more static where Twitter is purely a stream and meant as a media outlet in so many senses. It’s great for communicating with friends, but it’s bigger than that. Buzz was a great idea and could well be very valuable in the future, just like Wave could be, but overall I’m not seeing it yet.
Geolocation is a huge idea for marketers everywhere. For instance, building promotion around proximity or frequency of visits is a great way for certain businesses to create new customers or entice existing, respectively. There will be a backlash to this idea. There is always a backlash when considering personal information. Twitter played this smart by making it opt in.
Watch this space! Huge for consumer marketing and it will be incredibly relevant for sales forces in a few years.