“We’re 99 percent not social media or location check-ins,” says Foursquare Labs CEO Jeff Glueck. “We are rather a location technology platform that helps other companies with location technology, marketing tools, analytics tools, and the like. We’re actually more ubiquitous than ever. We are like a location layer underneath, an Intel Inside for location. The company today is celebrating its 10-year anniversary and we’re very different, so much more than the check-in app that everybody remembers.”
Jeff Glueck, CEO of Foursquare Labs, discusses how the company has shifted from a consumer app to a B2B technology company as it celebrates its 10-year anniversary. Glueck was interviewed on Bloomberg Technology:
We’re 99 Percent Not Social Media or Location Check-Ins
The company today is celebrating its 10-year anniversary and we’re very different, so much more than the check-in app that everybody remembers. Now we’ve passed over $100 million in revenue. We’re bigger than ever. We’re 99 percent NOT social media or location check-ins, but a location technology platform that helps other companies with location technology, marketing tools, analytics tools, and the like. We’re actually more ubiquitous than ever. We are like a location layer underneath, an Intel Inside for location.
Foursquare, because we started ten years ago as a consumer company, had a head start in thinking about all the ways that location could make our lives better but also all of the potential abuses and the privacy implications where consumers should be in control. We’ve been thinking about this and really trying to build an ethical tech company. Internally, we talk a lot about the ethics and privacy of approaching this stuff. I know that in this day and age that’s unusual but that is what we’re about.
It has been in a way a benefit to our business because we are hoping that developers and marketers are actually taking a really close look at how they add value with location, whether they have adequate user opt-in, and whether there are user controls. We’ve been advocates in fact that there should be more regulation in the United States, not less. So for us, it’s staking out a position where privacy and ethics are very core to what we’re doing. We’re kind of welcoming the scrutiny and I actually hope they’ll be even more.
Placed Is The Leader In Measuring In-Store Visits
When we raised a $150 million from investors led by the Rain Group this year we acquired from Snap, the parent of Snapshot a B2B business called Placed. The Placed product is the leader in measuring in-store visits after you have seen an ad, whether it’s on TV or digital or on outdoor billboards and the like. It helps marketers make better decisions about what’s working and, as they say, which half of my marketing spend isn’t working. We combine that with Foursquare attribution which was growing fast and together we are the leader in helping marketers and product companies understand what’s working.
We work with about 50 of the Fortune 100 in the United States, 14 of the top 20 retailers, and 18 the top 20 QSR and dining brands to help them understand which of their ads is actually inspiring new consumers or regulars to come back in the door and their storefront. With Placed, we really have taken a big leap forward in being the number one by far in that space. We also added a bunch of very talented people including our new president David Shim.