Posts Tagged 'israel'

Foursquare + Caffe Henrietta (Israel)

Had the pleasure of meeting Orli this afternoon at Caffe Henrietta, one of the many coffee houses in Tel Aviv area. Shortly before arriving I saw the picture Orli took (embed below), which I believe is the 1st long-term partnership a local business is doing with Foursquare (correct me if I’m wrong).

Henrietta and Foursquare (credit: Orli Yakuel)

Caffe Henrietta and Foursquare: Join our social club (credit: Orli Yakuel)

The first 5 minutes of the meeting both Orli and I spent facing our iPad/iPhone, respectively, registering for the partnership, at Caffe Henrietta’s website (He). The process is fairly simple, 3-4 steps, to connect you to Caffe Henrietta’s social club (facebook, foursquare, cellphone). Shortly after we received 3 text messages – including a free drink coupon for the current visit!

The text messages I received from Caffe Henrietta

The text messages I received from Caffe Henrietta

I’m happy to see location based services (He) are kicking off in Israel, with various models in place – campaign based, specials, partnerships, exploring what works and what not. Although Caffe Henrietta saw only $5 from the 3 of us (+ tip), the long term exposure and buzz is much bigger, not to mention customer loyalty – next time I’m meeting someone in that area, it will probably be at Henrietta.

The Future of Nonprofit Summit Israel

On the last day of February I’ll be attending FONSI – The Future of Nonprofit Summit Israel conference, at Nalaga’at Center, Jaffa port. The Future of Nonprofit Summit Israel [FONSI] is designed to showcase the best tools, latest trends, and best practices in order to advance the third sector in Israel.

I’ll be on the ‘Is Social Media Overrated‘ panel (scheduled for 16:30 – so please stay ;-), along with Olivier, Kfir, Hadassah and Florence, speaking about the status of social media, specifically how (and if) nonprofits can leverage the tools and services to their advantage. Will share best practices from my own experience, like Alfa Romeo, Nokia World 2010, and others.

Register here, sponsors here. See you Feb. 28th !

Day of Mourning – Carmel Fire

Thursday, Dec. 2nd, will be declared a National Day of Mourning in Israel, to commemorate one of the toughest disasters in our country’s history – The Carmel Wildfire (still raging). Emergency forces are describing the fire using war terms, and many agree that, excluding the wars – this disaster is the biggest and most complicated Israel has ever faced.

Carmel Fire, Thursday night (Dec. 2nd)

Carmel Fire, Thursday night (Dec. 2nd), at Tirat Hacarmel. By Niv Calderon

Starting small near the Village of Nucleus (also see Google Map below) on Thursday at 10:45am, the wildfire picked up with the winds, changed direction west to road 721, and trapped a bus conveying 40 Prison Guards on route to evacuate a nearby detention facility. 37 died on the bus, 3 escaped, presumed dead.

The remains of the prison guards' bus

The remains of the prison guards' bus, Carmel Fire. By Niv Calderon

Pictures by Niv Calderon. Additional pictures from the disaster area at

View שריפה בכרמל – חדשות 2 באינטרנט in a larger map

The fire burst on the 2nd day of Hannuka, a Jewish holiday celebrating the victory of the Maccabees over the Seleucid Empire, marking the rededicating of the Temple in Jerusalem (Second Temple). The olive oil in the temple’s eternal fire was enough for one day, but miraculously it burned for 8 days – exactly the time needed to prepare fresh olive oil.

Carmel Fire, captured by The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite.

Carmel Fire, captured by The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite. Click image for original

My heart goes out to the families who have lost their loved ones and to the emergency forces working around the clock to extinguish the fire. Special thanks to Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Britain and Russia for sending their fire-fighting aircrafts to assist.

Angry Birds Peace Treaty

Season 8 of Israel’s leading comedy/late-night show, Eretz Nehederet (A Wonderful Country), starts shooting soon, and in the meantime they started publishing short clips online.

The latest one is a parody on the world’s famous mobile game – Angry Birds, with a Middle-eastern twist 🙂 The English version was published 4 days after the Hebrew one and already surpassed it by # of views. Even received a share from Jeremiah Owyang on facebook.


5 lessons learned from Club Seat Foursquare campaign

Seat ClubBack in July I wrote here about the 1st foursquare campaign in Israel, Club Seat, a bold activity at the time, and even now. 4 months later, and thanks to Lindsay for reminding me, here is best practices for launching a foursquare campaign post. The post is based on data I collected on facebook and foursquare, along with personal insights, from my experience and my understanding of the digital marketing space in Israel. The charts comparing the ‘official’ venue vs. Club Seat venue are a visual aid, based on actual foursquare data collected October 26th.

1. Confusing rules

I’ll start at the end of the contest, a status update (see screenshot below) from a participant wondering why he hasn’t won 1st prize. Before you say anything (sour looser, etc) – the dude has a valid point: the winner should be the Mayor of the venue (Galina) that received the most check-ins during the contest. The response from Club Seat, although agreeing with the participant, doesn’t help clear the air (4th comment in the screenshot below): “The club that had the most check-ins by August 31st was Gazoz, 2nd was Galina, 3rd was Sublet. OK, say we believe it (stats anyone?). But wait, it gets better: The Mayor at both Gazoz and Galina, as of August 31st was Michal Y., who declined accepting the prize. Hence, the Mayor of the 3rd venue, Sublet, is the winner”. WTF?!?! How did they deduce that?? Who is Michal Y. and why did she decline a flight+vacation to Ibiza? Where are the check-in stats for August 31st to support the decision? But the most awkward thing is the logic they used for picking an alternate winner. Just so we’re clear, Runner-up refers to an actual human. Not venue. Confusing, but even more, something’s fishy. And that’s not a term one wants associated with one’s brand.

Club Seat post-contest discussion

Club Seat post-contest discussion

2. Duplicate venues

Google’s mission is to ‘Organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful‘. Foursquare, as any other User-Generated-Content service (youtube, twitter, go-walla, facebook places, etc) are working hard on eliminating duplicate and triple content, in order to minimize storage space – and make it easier for us, consumers, to find what we need. I understand it was important ‘branding’ the club with ‘Club Seat‘, making it unique to the contest – but I think that’s wrong. There are plenty of methods to measure traffic and check-ins to existing venues, no need to create duplicates. Plus, by using the existing venue already on foursquare (Gazoz, Galina and Sublet) you give incentive to the current Mayor to ‘keep his chair’, by increasing his/her visits – basically ‘using’ the Mayor’s own need to remain, well, the Mayor.

Galina - Club Seat foursquare campaign

Foursquare stats: Galina vs. Galina Club Seat

3. Leverage evangelists

As I wrote back in July, this campaign will be interesting to watch, as foursquare is considered early-early stage in Israel, around 1,000 active users (who checked-in in the past 30 days) in my opinion. Any digital marketing campaign must include early adopters of the technology in question and community hubs – people that have 1000+ facebook friends, 2000+ twitter followers, 300+ foursquare friends – that will act as a powerful magnet, bringing more traffic, making some noise. Maybe Grey Interactive had such evangelists, but even if they had, I haven’t heard about it – and I’m pretty out there, socially speaking.

4. People, not venue, oriented

CEOs, CFOs, CMOs, CIOs – it’s all about the consumer. When doing a location based contest, people count, because tracking their movement and analyzing the data will bring you added value. Premiere value. To strengthen my first point (confusing rules), when the winner (Mayor) of a venue declines a free vacation to Ibiza, give it to the person Runner-up, not the venue. Now, the charts – although Gazoz and Galina (Club Seat) have more check-ins than the official venue, people-wise – they loose. Twice. Because those 114 and 203 people (respectively) could have joined the contest, boosting all metrics, simply by seeing all those other Seat clubbers checking-in.

Gazoz - Club Seat foursquare

Foursquare stats: Gazoz vs. Gazoz Club Seat

5. Bring the business on-board

In my opinion, the #1 reason this campaign didn’t go as planned – minimal business involvement. There are hundreds of clubs/bars in Tel Aviv, all striving to survive, 60% will close within 24 months (actual stat). If Club Seat would have worked with Galina, Gazoz and Sublet, offering an incentive to those checking-in (free keg to parties of 4+, 1st beer on the house, etc), this contest could have taken another route altogether, increasing awareness, boosting sales and helping both Seat and the clubs win the crowd.

Sublet Club Seat foursquare

Foursquare stats: Sublet vs. Sublet Club Seat

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Mobile & Media Consultant. I help startup companies launch products to the consumer market. Reach out: dvir.reznik [at]



This is my personal blog. The postings here do not represent the thoughts, intentions, plans or strategies of my past employers or of my clients. It is solely my opinion.