Many people are wondering what the FourSquare phenomenon “is.” With the social media application Twitter founded in 2006, online users are still trying to “get” Twitter. What’s FourSquare?

FourSquare is a new form of Social Media for the smartphone where one earns points and badges by visiting friends and places. The one that visits the most places in a given location becomes “mayor” of that location. It’s a new, incentive-based way to get up from the couch and meet people and places. With over 1 million subscribers, the people have spoken.

Interestingly, the Foursquare Location-based service is nothing new. According to Wikipedia, Dennis Crowley, who co-founded Foursquare in 2009, had started a similar location-based app called Dodgeball in 2000. Dodgeball was then bought by Google in 2005, and shut it down in 2009, instead re-branding it “Google Latitude.”

The location-based app Dodgeball in 2000, and even in 2005, apparently was “before its time.” Apparently, the times have caught up to the application, thanks in huge part to the widespread usage of smart phones. Foursquare’s childish-like “badges” and “mayor status,” as well as the ability to import friends from Facebook, Twitter, and Gmail, have appealed FourSquare to the masses.

How does one know when a product becomes a hit? When people begin to culturally reference it., just today, used the “FourSquare” reference. A creative writer posted “Foursquared: Homers help SF into Wild Card Tie.”

Indeed, FourSquare is here to stay, and Internet, especially Social Media, Marketers should take FourSquare seriously.

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