I talked the VP of Network Development for Schmap, Donald McMillan today. I posted about their GeoTweeting service and wanted to talk with them about their plans for the future; specifically what I’ve been calling, conduit marketing.
At a high-level, they see the future of GeoTweets as something that ads value and more specifically things that;
- Enable tasks
- Allow users to share information
We spoke specifically about GeoTweeting’s impact on real estate. There is a general consensus that what happened to the travel industry with online functionality will soon happen to the real estate industry. We talked about having users follow a real estate agent as they perused various neighbor hoods and then GeoTweeted images of the property. (Zillow just released their iPhone application.) This brought up the discussion of Twitter not only becoming more focused on subject matter but also increasingly location based.
When it comes to revenue models there is the potential for co-branding and advertising (pictures, banners). We discussed ExecTweets and their model of providing Tweets from business leaders. When I asked about geo-targeting interacting with location based services, he indicated they were working on assembling tools for local businesses, maybe travel oriented. They had also been working with a group that organizes urban scavenger hunts (which sound really cool). According to Donald the future of GeoTweeting lies in their ability to contextualize, which is a combination of location, genre and industry. These will be the expectations of the users in the coming months.
One of the most interesting things that came out of our conversation is that the technology to create these business models is there. It’s just that no one has assembled them yet. People still think of many of these things as “The Jetsons” and yet they do exist. People just need to assemble those models.
The other thing that became apparent was that with the advent of iPhone applications driving advertising (for businesses like AdMob), additional revenue streams are possible for strategic partners of Schmap. The iPhone could be the lynchpin for conduit marketing. It allows you the revenue from the application, potential subscription, ad revenue and allows users to recommend products/services to friends by placing location based reminders.
Is there anything the iPhone can’t do? Can it make me macadamia nut pancakes? Not yet! Soon though. Very soon . . .
Schmap does offer a GeoTweeting app and I suggest you run down to the store (iTunes will open) and get one today. It’s free and it’s going to get very very handy.