11/01/2011 08:15 pm ET Updated Jan 01, 2012

7 Ways To Make Money On Foursquare

In an age where there's always "an app for that," it's easy to feel overwhelmed. As a small-business owner, the task to turn social media into a worthwhile and profitable part of your marketing budget can seem daunting, not to mention time-consuming and plain confusing. Keeping up with the changing tides of social media isn't easy, either. When you've managed to finally get the hang of Facebook, your competitor makes a Twitter account, and the dizzying cycle starts all over again.

Although costly in terms of man hours, social media is really a gift if you take the time to use it. Applications like Foursquare, a location-based check-in system, requires less work from you, and instead uses your customers to propel your business's popularity. "Foursquare unlocks your city and makes your world a more interesting place. It informs, illuminates and inspires. For small businesses, it can help attract, reward and engage customers in ways that were never possible," notes Carmine Gallo, author of "The Power of Foursquare," which educates business owners about the application through seven unique tips.

With Foursquare, a customer "checks in" to a business using an application on his or her mobile device. This check-in is cataloged on Foursquare, allowing friends and others in the area to see where that person is. The more that customer checks in to the location, the more notoriety he or she gains on the Foursquare platform. Users can earn badges and become "mayor" of a location if they check in often enough. Playful competition develops, and all of a sudden, you've got customers clamoring to check in at your business.

"The Power of Foursquare" teaches you how to harness the power of this rapidly growing social media platform, how to attract more customers and ultimately profit from this interactive application. Below, Carmine Gallo shares his seven tips to mastering Foursquare, as well as some great ideas to get started.