Yesterday, foursquare announced the launch of their new custom badge program for universities. WVU is lucky enough to be highlighted as a launch partner. Last fall I shared how I think foursquare can help your school and most of those points still stand. After reviewing the foursquare numbers for our campus and comparing them against the competition I'm still excited by what foursquare can do for our school. The expanded options for specials has also opened up a lot of opportunities. For now I'll keep mum about our plans for the fall (outside of the new custom badge obviously) but, suffice it to say, I think we have some cool projects and integrations in the works.
Getting the Badge
For most schools learning about the program the first question will probably be, "How do we get that badge?" (With the second question, "Is it free?" ,quickly following. The answer is yes.) To get the badge a school must fill out the foursquare for Universities sign-up form. If you're already in the university program I'm not sure if you have to fill it out again or not.
As more and more smartphones hit campus the ability for students to discover your events, offices, and deals while they're out and about is going to skyrocket. foursquare provides a great and fun avenue to share information based on location with students. If you're so inclined, and I think it's one of the most powerful and useful tools of foursquare, the API can open up a whole host of possibilities.
Student Ambassador Program
If you know of a student on your campus that is totally into foursquare and can be an asset in helping populate foursquare with your information then tell them to check out the re-launched Student Ambassador Program. Collateral and a connected extra hand can always be helpful.
Keeping Up with Future foursquare Updates
Obviously you can follow the foursquare blog for future updates but there are at least two other avenues as well. There is the @4sqonCampus twitter account and you can follow Anna Frankel (@af), one of the campus marketing folks at foursquare, as well. If you want to know more about what is involved with the new program I'd definitely encourage you to ask either of those two accounts. I've been pleasantly surprised by how much they really want to help higher ed do cool things with their technology.
I'm excited by what schools will be able to deliver with foursquare on their campuses. The new custom badge program shows that foursquare recognizes both the economics of higher education by offering the badge for free but also knowing we can help push the envelope a bit as well if they can engage and educate us.