This weekend I attended a conference “Social Media Marketing Unplugged“, so along with some 300 other people who gave up their Saturday, I too sat in a lecture theatre and listened to 8 speakers talk about various aspects of Social Media Marketing. It was an interesting conference, and well worth the $95 I spent to attend (thanks SocialShopper). Being more of a technology guy, and not so much of a marketing guy (although with the years I’ve put in volunteering for non-profits, it’s not a totally unfamiliar hat to wear) I’m not sure to what degree I’m going to try (or be able) to apply what I learned through the sessions. Still, I came out of the sessions with more knowledge, and a few interesting ideas, we’ll see how they pan out.
One of the sessions was on Yelp! which I’d heard of previously, but not really used. Essentially it is a local community based reviews site for restaurants and businesses. Because it’s a community, you can see how many reviews someone else has written, and through that see how their opinions mesh with your own, and develop a sense of trust of their reviews, allowing you to then base your purchasing or visiting decisions on those recommendations. This could obviously be a quite powerful tool. Yelp is also available as an App for various phones, and you can imagine how powerful that could be with a phone with GPS enabled. Looking for a good nearby Greek restaurant would no longer require any knowledge of the neighbourhood (presuming that you trust your fellow Yelpers (as they’re called)).
So where am I going with this? Well, I suppose on some level I’m not sure. Conceptually I like the idea, and it’s potential power, but personally I have a basic phone and tend to frequent the same establishments. That said, I have signed up, and am actively reviewing places at the moment, so we’ll see if it has staying power for me personally or not. Part of the interest was that it is possible for you to enter your own business on Yelp, if it’s not there already, so I was definitely curious to see if any of the Ultimate leagues were listed (didn’t find them), although it does appear that the local Disc Golf courses are, which is where I’ve been spending my review time so far.
It’s worth checking out, to see if you’d find it useful, and if you’re already on Yelp feel free to add me as a “friend”, if you are a business owner, or even an employee, it’s probably worth checking to see if you’re listed on Yelp, and to see what people think of your service/products, it should either highlight areas of improvement, or allow you to accept a pat on the back.
I suspect that there will be fewer review type posts appearing here in the future with them instead being put on Yelp (at least as a primary source) where they will be of more benefit to more people, at least in theory.