Geo Social is now starting to become mainstream. Many companies are popping up to allow people to make connections with who they know in their town (www.foound.com) and when they travel (www.ajungo.com). This is due primarily to three main factors: the penetration of smartphones to the mass market so the majority of the people in the market have a geo-sensing device that provides a rich experience; the overall popularity of Facebook so that many people with smartphones can be connected; and the ability of linking to Facebook to applications thus having readymade content at any application developers disposal.
Geo Social will take the next step in allowing people to know each other in the room via a wireless network connection and a social networking connection. This capability will probably be used in certain situations like business conferences and in dating situations where people do not know each other and will want to make some type of connection. This will move Geo Social from a community communications tool to a personal identifier and information source.
Geo Social will perform the function of knowing people's interests and characteristics before you actually meet them. It will a good conversation starter in a business situation when people are looking to make small talk and build a bond, in a dating situation where it is always more interesting to talk about something in common, or simply a way for people to exchange ideas about a topic they are passionate about. This evolution of making social interaction more efficient started with Facebook and will continue with geo social because it has value in creating more efficient conversation and it makes people more comfortable as they are able break the ice and start a meaningful conversation.
Privacy concerns do exist, and they become more impactful because the geo targeted person is at a physical location. Geo Social connecting needs to done in certain situation and should be turned off when the person leaves the particular area. In addition the same rules apply in providing content on social networks in terms of how you want to be perceived and known about. This may differ depending on the situation. LinkedIn for business situations and Facebook for social situations. People do in fact have different personas in different situations.
Some small companies are working on these types of solutions, but the larger social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn can use this to understand how people connect based on location, who people are interested in connecting with in a face to face meeting, and what common interests’ people have. Geo Social makes social networking more valuable to the user and provides a way to provide more targeted and higher CPA advertisements simply because it can help start a conversation.