Setting up your ad

To get started, follow these three simple steps:  

  1. Create an ad. Just write a short message and pick a photo. That’s it! You’re good to go.
  2. Set your budget. You choose how much you want to spend each month, plus how much you’re willing to pay per potential customer. We’ll only charge you when people act on your ad, and we’ll stop showing it once your monthly budget has been met. You’ll never pay more than your monthly budget, ever.
  3. Track your results. You’ll be able to see how your ad is doing in your dashboard at any time. Plus, we’ll send you weekly email updates that may include advice to help you get the most out of Foursquare Ads.

That's all! Once you turn on your ad, we’ll start sending customers your way.

How do I set up an ad to run at multiple locations at the same time?

Before you create your ad, you have the option to manage a single location, all your locations, or a group of locations. 


Choose the group that you want the ad to run on, and then follow the steps above. If you don't have any groups yet, see here for more information on creating groups of locations. 

How do I pause my ad?

Click on "Manage my ads" after you log into your manager dashboard. To the right of your ad, you will see a drop down button called "active". Click on that and then click on the orange "stop campaign" button.

This will pause your campaign. It can be restarted at any time by clicking on the green "restart campaign" button. 

How do I write a great ad?

You don’t have an be an expert copywriter to write a great ad! The best ads draw from things that you already know about your business. Do you offer daily specials? What about that guest chef/bartender that’s coming next month? Or that great review from a local blogger? It can even be a special offer for checking in. Anything that you want to highlight about your business can be turned into an ad.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Highlight what's special. The best fish tacos around. Holy chipotle mayo!
  • Feature an offer. Buy one pair of shoes, get the second pair 50% off.
  • Reward new customers. Stop by and get a drink on the house.
  • Promote an event. “Live jazz every night starting at 8pm.

Why don't I see my own ad when I use Foursquare City Guide?

Your ad won’t appear each time you search in Foursquare City Guide. There are a number of elements that are taken into account when we show an ad, including search terms, the budget you’ve set for the ad, and how many other similar business are advertising in the area.

Instead of searching in the app, the best way to ensure that your ad is live and appearing for your visitors would be to log into your dashboard and review your ad. Click on “Manage your ads” and you will be able to verify that your ad is live, see a preview, and track it’s progress.

If you’re not seeing anything under “Performance Stats” make sure you review the following:

  • That your ad is “Active”. If it’s not, click on the green “Restart Campaign” button.
  • That your credit card needs is up to date. You can review this under the "Billing" tab at the top of the screen.
  • That your monthly budget hasn't been spent.  You can review this by reviewing the reporting on your ad.
  • That you have a high enough bid to appear in the auction. If you don't you will receive an email notification, and you would be alerted to this in the ads dashboard.

How do I know my ad is performing?

You’ll be able to see how your ad is doing in your dashboard by clicking on “Manage your ads” at any time. If you're running more than one ad, click the ad name to view a more detailed report. Plus, we’ll send you weekly email updates that may include advice to help you get the most out of Foursquare Ads.

Here’s how to tell whether your Foursquare City Guide Ad is successful. Measure your progress in three ways:

  1. Number of Visits: Customers who physically visit your store after seeing your ad. If a customer spends even $10, your Foursquare Ad could be paying for itself.
  2. Number of Taps (like clicks): People who tap on your ad to learn more about your business - directions, menu, phone number, and more.
  3. Number of Impressions (completely free): People who see your ad while searching for somewhere to go, increasing awareness of your business.

What’s more, all the taps and impressions are made by individuals in your neighborhood (not in another city or state), meaning any of them could walk into your store in the future!