Snapchat partners with Foursquare to make location-based ads better



Yesterday Snapchat, the popular multimedia messaging app, filed for an IPO. For us the more interesting news is that at the same time the company signed a deal with Foursquare. The goal of this partnership is to provide marketers with precise geotargeting capabilities for geofilters (animated overlays on pictures).

Snapchat introduced geofilters a year ago but currently it’s limited to nearby cities or landmarks in addition to the sponsored locations it sells to businesses. With Foursquare’s data the start-up will have an access to the database of over 90 million locations. This creates a huge opportunity for better targeting but making use of it is actually much more difficult than you might think.

Twitter also announced a partnership with Foursquare two years ago but the company did not manage to build any value added around location information. Snapchat is however in a totally different place and the value proposition is very clear. Pin-pointing user to a specific store or restaurant could for example allow large chains to introduce sponsored video filters that differs location by location. Users would want to collect them all.

With this deal Snapchat can actually sell more filters while enhancing the user experience. Win-win. Location is again proving to be the killer feature of almost any app.

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I'm a professional always thinking outside the box and a self-confessed gadget addict. As a son of a professor of cartography I was surrounded by maps all my life and as a result spatial way of thinking and seeing reality is naturally embedded in who I am.


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