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Finally, Foursquare Social Media star unveils its radically revamped new app

Finally, Foursquare unveils its radically revamped new app

After splitting its business and user experience in two earlier this year, Foursquare social media star has revealed its radically redesigned new app. Splitting in two Social media managers who’ve been following the NY startup’s metamorphosis this year will know that it launched Swarm back in May: this is now the home of Foursquare’s check in and it lets you find which of your buddies are nearby so you can link up for a Starbucks, or whatever else takes your mutual fancies. Now comes Foursquare 8.0, which has finally come out of purdah (it’ll be available within the next few weeks). Our attentive social media manager will instantly spot that the company’s trademark green has gone, to be replaced with watermelon pink. And that rather cuddly, bouncing ball-type logo has also been retired in favor of a striking flag icon in the shape of the letter “F”. CEO Dennis Crowley told The Verge journalist Ellis Hamburger that the new redesign brings to life the app he always wanted to build. The decision to split the company and place the check-in function with swarm, he conceded, generated controversy and dissent from some. But user feedback has been predominantly positive, Crowley maintains,…

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Walker & Co’s Bevel shave system bags $7 million

New York entrepreneur Tristan Walker has just announced a princely $7 million Series A investment for his ecommerce firm, Walker & Co. The twenty-nine year-old former Foursquare business development lead and Andreessen Horowitz entrepreneur-in-residence launched his personal care products firm Walker & Co last year. Intrigued ecommerce managers who know how crowded this space is may be wondering how Mr. Walker persuaded Andreessen Horowitz (who led the round) to invest in his project, which has so far focused on marketing a single core product. An uphill struggle that paid off  The product is Bevel, a shaving system uniquely designed to prevent the skin irritation frequently experienced by African-American men with coarse, curly facial hair. The high-end, single-blade Bevel razor prevents the irritating skin bumps men of color suffer from when using multi-blade razors (the latter tug at hair follicles, cutting them beneath the skin, whereupon newly growing hair tends to re-enter pores and become ingrown). The Bevel system also includes shaving creams and salves, plus a stylishly-designed shaving brush. Walker had something of an uphill task ahead of him: an astute ecommerce analyst could probably predict that mainly white investors would have little familiarity with this type of skin irritation,…

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How Foursquare’s crazy idea might become its Next Big Thing: Welcome to Swarm

Picture this: you’re a product manager at a highly successful social media startup that’s about to make a radical decision about its popular app. But the co-founder and CEO initially describes it as “crazy”. Pity the product manager at New York’s Foursquare: when the idea to split the app into two was first mooted (one for discovery and a new one – “Swarm” – for arranging offline meetups with friends), the initial response was not positive. How do you sell a pup like that? From crazy to total sense  As founder and CEO Dennis Crowley put it in an interview with Mashable, “At first, we thought it was crazy to do this, but it makes total sense.” Those last four words made that product manager’s job much less scary. Newly released for iPhone and Android, Swarm breaks the proximity and check-in functions away from the main app to become a simple, easy-to-use standalone feature. Users have the option of a grid view or list view of nearby friends who are also using the swarm app (the list view is a little easier on the eye, in our opinion). The app constantly pings each user’s whereabouts to others who use it…

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New York-based social network Foursquare now sends notifications proactively with version 7.0

Jobbing social media managers would probably agree that Dennis Crowley cuts an inspiring figure; the founder of New York-headquartered location-based social network Foursquare, he dreamt of the day when he had the means to automatically send users notifications giving them ideas on where to shop, where to eat or what to see depending on where they happened to be. How to realize a dream But he had a big problem: in 2009, when Foursquare launched, users had to “check in” to the smartphone app every time they wanted interesting tips about their location. When a couple of years later he experimented with a new app that would send notifications automatically, he found that it drained smartphone batteries. Creative social media managers can identify with his frustration: great ideas sometimes hit the buffers because the technology isn’t there to deliver them. But then Crowley tapped the talents of two brilliant minds – his lead engineer Anoop Ranganath and his data scientist Blake Shaw – and set them to work on solving the problems. And they did: a successful pilot for a new Ranganath and Shaw-built version of Foursquare over the last couple of months culminated in the launch last week of…

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Foursquare to feature local business as part of paid ad strategy

Business development managers looking to expand their portfolio of online advertising strategies will doubtless be interested to learn that listings giant Foursquare has decided to open out its services to small businesses around the globe. The idea is deceptively simple: Promoted listings will feature in the app’s “explore” function, in which users can search for local attractions.  For example, if the search term is “rack of ribs”, Foursquare populates a list of local restaurants providing appropriate fare. Restaurants (or hotels or other local services and attractions) can bid to have their details pop up in the search, meaning their profile is raised and the guy on the other end doesn’t go hungry.  Job done. Foursquare clearly thinks there’s mileage in this tank – the business spent time testing out its potential with SMEs in the New York City area earlier this year. In terms of the mechanics of payment, it works on a similar basis to other advertising listings.  SMEs wishing to advertise their wares are charged on a cost “per action” arrangement, which essentially means that they only hand over the dollars if users tap through to the promoted listing or check in at the location advertised on the…

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