LeWeb: Dennis Crowley for Foursquare

Adam Tinworth
Adam Tinworth

Dennis from Foursquare

The snow is beginning to send things off the rails at Le Web. Speakers are missing and not able to find their way here. But we have slightly late, Dennis Crowley of Foursquare. It’s been a gentle, rambling chat, talking about his path to where he is now. It’s clear that his time with Google after they acquired his first startup, Dodgeball, has affected how he sees the world. Google bought it, he couldn’t get the things he wanted done with it, and so he left and they closed the service. And where does that leave us? He’s clearly reluctant to sell again, because he’s more interested in building a product than a business per se. And Google is trying to play catch-up in location services.

He reiterated the product point in response to a question from Tara Hunt as to what he’d do if he could magically change things – and he just came back to wanting to build products. But, from the other questions, there’s an emerging message that he’s building revenue through partnership. He’s building a far more sophisticated version of the loyalty card, where you’re not just rewarded for 10 purchases, but for bringing a number of friends, or trying different dishes, or going to different outlets…

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Adam is a lecturer, trainer and writer. He's been a blogger for over 20 years, and a journalist for more than 30. He lectures on audience strategy and engagement at City, University of London.