Mobile Search - Tips and TricksIt seems the new generation of smart phones, social networks and apps all demand a huge contribution from you. What you are thinking, doing, and now – where are you? After all, without those contributions, the networks cannot exist and function.

It is hard not to believe that the top scoring apps are not an endeavour by the human race to return community to every day living. Whether it is gossiping over the garden fence, reporting on a  friend’s (or your) whereabouts, encouraging social meet ups etc. Is this not how villages and communities used to exist and co-habit? Learn from other’s daily lives or mistakes? Establish bonds between friends and family? Unsurprisingly, the online social networking tools have shown higher uptake than simple communication or work tools such as Office and email (the equivalents of the flint knife or hieroglyphics in stone age society)

Foursquare etc have grown inordinately over the last few years as people use these type of geographical apps to monitor and report their locations as well as their ‘doings’. Facebook has leapt into the latest social/geographical app with Facebook Places.

What do these mean to businesses? As more people use social networks to reach those in their close social circle (initially) and then to extend that circle – the equivalent of searching out a wider gene or experience pool in prehistoric times – so the options for commercial returns gain momentum.

If you can find who is near to your cave/shop, and reach them easily with an advert for a product or service through such a simple mechanism as their ear/mobile phone, then you can instantly reach all of their network too if they are impressed with your offering. “Roll up, roll up, gorgeous furs and skins to protect you from the winter whilst you hunt wild game” may not be the message you need to transmit (TX) in the 21st century, but at least you know now that the audience who will receive (RX) your message can be global and not just those within earshot. The possibilities for TX to a diverse audience are no longer dependent per se on a drum or word of mouth – you can email, text, tweet, blog, RSS, advertise on TV, radio, print, or create a mobile application.

One of the joys of location dependent advertising is that it allows your customers – potential, existing or FOAF (friends of a friend) – to take the first step of advising where in the world they are, which then permits you to target products and services, particularly location dependent, directly to these people whilst they are (interested) in the area using tools such as Foursquare or Facebook’s Places or mobile apps such as StreetSlide. Proof again, if it’s ever needed, that internet marketing continues to evolve.

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About the author:

A practising internet marketing consultant since 1996, Lindsey Annison helps companies improve their website marketing, online PR and information architecture. Lindsey is also a qualified adult education lecturer and author. As co-founder of the Access to Broadband Campaign, she has been instrumental in the provision of high-speed internet access to rural areas in the UK. Lindsey is also a past winner of's Outstanding Contribution to UK Technology