Foursquare, the popular mobile application that lets users check-in with the service on where they are in the real world, just announced today a partnership with Pepsi for foursquare New York. When New Yorkers use foursquare this week, the points they generate on the service through actions such as checking-in and adding new locations will turn into cash that Pepsi will donate to CampInteractive, an organization that helps empower inner-city youth through technology skills and mentoring.
This makes me wonder what organization will be willing to take the risk in being the first Canadian Foursquare sponsor. When Toronto was added to Foursquare two months ago, out of the 15 cities added during the week of October 15th, Toronto generated the most Foursquare activity that week.
Rogers, Telus and Bell who each provide devices that support foursquare (expect that Bell doesn’t have any Android devices yet) are each candidates to be sponsors. Rogers has already used real world scavenger hunt tactics in its marketing campaigns this past summer to help launch their Android phones. Major real estate owners in Toronto, like Cadillac Fairview, the owners of the Toronto Eaton Centre, could also sponsor a campaign to encourage users to spend more time in their malls and the shops within. It could also be used as a way to cross-sell their Eaton Centre iPhone App. Another worthy sponsor? Starbucks of course, match one addiction with another.
Foursquare already has a resource that encourages local businesses to get involved with foursquare by offering benefits to foursquare mayors of their businesses, people who frequently check-in at particular locations, perks or free products. So far though, only one local Toronto business is listed as providing any perks to foursquare users. Sponsoring Toronto’s foursquare activity for a week may be a more effective way for large businesses to leverage what appears to be Toronto’s foursquare addiction.