Topguest is a new web startup that acts as the middleman between FourSquare or Facebook and some of the brand names consumers love. It’s really simple, you just tell a company where you are using their services and they reward you with air miles, %10 discounts, and other goodies.
Sounds great, I love free stuff! Honestly, who doesn’t… When you’re trying to decide between two similar brands to book your travel plans with, the one that offers the extra reward points or discount on your bill is going to make the decision for you. That is the whole purpose of Topguest, they are changing the marketing game by rewarding customer loyalty, but there is a catch.
Location, location, location! When you use Topguest you forfeit your location privacy. Topguest and its partners will know where you are along with anyone else who has access to your Facebook or Foursquare check-ins. Is this a real problem..? Not really, most of these companies just want your business and want to market their products to you in the most effective way possible. Then again, it still is a little bit creepy because you never truly know just who all is tracking your location.
If you are comfortable with people knowing your whereabouts, there is some nice rewards to be earned through the Topguest system. They’ve already teamed up with an impressive roster of partner companies, just take look at this list:
- Virgin America
- Hilton Honors
- Priority Club Rewards
- Wyndham Rewards
- Viceroy Hotels, Resorts & Residences
- Thompson Hotels
- The Standard
- Avis (car rentals)
- Double Tree Hotels
- Holiday Inn
- Voila Hotel Rewards
- Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants
- InterContinental Hotels & Resorts
Virgin America is offering 25 bonus Elevate (frequent flyer) points with each check-in, Priority Club is offering 50 bonus reward points when you check-in at any of their hotels, Avis will give you a 10% off coupon when you check-in at their stores, and that is just to name a few.
You can pickup the free iPhone or Android app online from the links at the Topguest website, but don’t let that limit you if you don’t have either phone. You can still sign-up and link your Topguest account to Facebook Places or Foursquare and check-in using SMS or any other mobile method available to you.
This is great, at least now people are getting “paid” for giving up their privacy.
Agreed – as someone who is neither a spy nor a criminal, I have no problems with people knowing where I am. I just hope they aren’t too disappointed with the fact that I never leave my house.