(NECN: Lauren Collins, Portsmouth, NH) - It's the latest social media craze and it's all the buzz in at least one New Hampshire community.
Foursquare launched in New York City a year ago. The social media site mixes gaming with marketing and it tremendously popular in Portsmouth.
"Foursquare is a location sharing application for your phone," explains Internet marketing pro and Foursquare user Walter Elly.
When users "check in" to a shop or spot, the application alerts their friends on Foursquare, Facebook, and Twitter. They also get points to earn virtual badges.
"That's what it turns it into the game," says Elly. "The fact that every time you check in you do get points."
The user who checks in the most at one location becomes the mayor of that location.
"I used to be the mayor of the Hampton tolls," laugh Jeffrey Vocelli as he checked into Port City Coffee Roasters in Portsmouth, New Hampshire Friday .
Dana Farida, though, is the mayor of Port City Coffee Roasters.
"It's been like every single day. So I don't even know how many times (I've checked in)."
The interaction is two-way. Businesses can use Foursquare to create a buzz or offer deals. Port City Coffee Roasters president Derek LaBorie says the application is a perfect way to build a relationship with his customers.
"When they're standing in line to get coffee these days they're checking their phone. It doesn't matter what it is, whether it's searching for something of checking their email so anything that works with that's just a natural."
Friday (4/16) is Foursquare Day -- dedicated to registering new businesses, signing up new users and offering deals. A group of social media gurus decided on Sunday to promote a Portsmouth Foursquare Day.
"In the span of about four or five days, we were able to, out of 200 participating cities, make Portsmouth number one," says Social Media Club NH President Justin Herman.
Co-Organizer Brian DeKoning says the city is "an innovative place where people are already using Foursquare already."
It fits a compact, hip, and locally conscious city like Portsmouth
"Users have to be in your location to use foursquare. The people who are finding out about your place or promo are going to be within walking distance," notes DeKoning.
And that includes non-retail businesses like the New Hampshire Film Festival and Infinite Imaging, where GM Sean Roberts says, "being involved in graphics communications, being a part of foursquare is another way to get in front of our existing client base as well as our growing prospects."