Posts from Checkin

Foursquare Lists

I had an epiphany today. I was in Storm, a cool store in Copenhagen, and I checked into Foursquare. In the result screen of that checkin, I saw a tip that there was another design store right around the corner called Hay. And that my friend Naveen had recommended Hay on his Copenhagen list.

I immediately saved Naveen's list to my phone and then saved a few other Copenhagen lists that were recommended to me.

Now every time I checkin somewhere in Copenhagen, I get a tip for another place that is nearby on one of the lists that I saved. No more thinking about where to go next. Foursquare will tell me based on suggestions from my friends and the lists I've saved.

I've tried every kind of travel guide out there. Some are great, like the Luxe guides and the Wallpaper guides. But an interactive, real time, geolocated travel guide built by my friends and likeminded travelers is way better.

So I'm going to create lists on Foursquare from now on so that others can benefit the same way that I am right now. Here's my list so far from a day or so in Copenhagen.

#Blogging On The Road#mobile#Travel

Feature Friday: The Multi Photo Checkin

I'm a huge fan of the photo checkin on Foursquare. When I see a friend checkin somewhere interesting to me, I always leave a comment on that checkin saying "photo checkin pls" and I usually get one back.

The checkins with the photos are the ones that stand out in the feed on the phone. And for that reason, I put a photo in almost every checkin I do. It just makes Foursquare so much richer.

But the killer move is the "multi photo checkin". Not everyone knows this but you can add more photos to a checkin. If you just open that checkin on your phone, there is a camera button that allows you to add more photos.

Last night my colleague Gary Chou was eating sushi and started doing a multi photo checkin. I begged him to stop as I was starving and hadn't eaten in a long time.

When Christina went down to OccupyWallStreet, she did a twelve photo checkin which I can't seem to find on Foursquare right now or I'd link to it. It's essentially a photo collage of her visit there. It is great. (update: Christina provided this link to her OWS visit in the comments.)

These multi photo checkins remind me of the blog posts Gotham Gal does on her restaurant reviews. In fact Foursquare could make doing a restaurant review on a blog a piece of cake with a slick export checkin feature. Consider that a feature request Alex and Dennis.


Check In Apps vs Audience Measurement Panels

I spent a decade as an early stage investor and board member of comScore. In that capacity I learnt a lot about using representative samples to develop broad based market research on media viewing. This is the approach used by Nielsen in television and comScore in internet. Both companies assemble representative panels of users and then scale up the data to predict media viewing at large. There is a lot of data science involved in this approach. Both companies have built large and valuable franchises with this technique.

Yesterday, I came across a blog post by our portfolio company Get Glue where they correlated their "checkin data" with film box office results. For those that don't know, Get Glue is the most popular entertainment checkin app for mobile and web. Get Glue has well over a million users and had over 4 million entertainment checkins in April. So the question is – can a checkin app be a representative sample for the purposes of measuring and predicting entertainment product performance?

Here's a chart of checkins vs. box office results:


Get Glue goes on to explain the math behind this graph:

As you can see, there is a clear correlation between check-ins and box office dollars. The gray dotted line represents the average relationship between the two. For the mathematically inclined, to get the trend line we performed a simple linear regression and obtained an R2 value of 0.95. In other words, 95% of the variance in the data was explained by the trend line. A perfect correlation would have an R2value of 1.0.

I think this is fascinating. Get Glue also gets checkins to TV shows and music listening. It occurs to me that they could, with a fair bit of targeted recruiting and data cleansing, get to a fairly decent audience measurement service. I continue to be amazed by the power of the checkin.

#VC & Technology#Web/Tech