Gowalla to launch "Groupon" style rewards at SXSW

We all know “checking in” to certain places using location-based mobile services like Foursquare and Gowalla can have some real life benefits.

Maybe you’ll get 20 percent off or a free donut, but currently it seems like there aren’t enough brands using the services to make a real difference in daily life.

That’s why Gowalla is hoping to leverage the power of a site like Groupon or Living Social with the benefits of location based services. Enter Gowalla’s Rewards platform.

“Everyone talks about game-mechanics and badges, but the question for us is how we take these beautiful icons and turn them into something that has tangible value,” Gowalla CEO Josh Williams explained.

“That’s where our Rewards platform comes in. It allows us to take rewards from local businesses and larger brands that are definitely more akin to, say, a Groupon or Living Social-type thing, rather than just a dollar off your coffee.”

The nitty gritty details of the experiment have yet to be announced but we can presume it could mean big discounts based on the number or people who check-in.

This could give major brands more reason to experiment with location-based check-in services, which translates into more discounts for us common folk.

The Austin-based company hopes to unveil the product at South by Southwest (SXSW), at the upcoming tech, music, and movie festival.

“Basically we’re launching with a select group of partners, both larger brands and local businesses,” says Williams. 

Foursquare, watch out now!

(Via Fast Company)