Smash or Mash?

Gowalla, the lesser known of the check-in apps, just did something amazing. They didn’t me-too the better known FourSquare or try to overcome the looming Facebook Places, instead they integrated and aggregated them. You can now broadcast your Gowalla check-in on Foursquare and Facebook Places and while doing it earn Facebook Deals and Foursquare Badges. And they created an aggregated check-in stream of what your friends are doing on all three. Then they personalized their new release and added the ability to leave personal messages for your friends should they check in too. Brilliant. They didn’t circle the wagons, go me-too, only made here, instead they created a better product from their competitor’s products. The proprietary closed digital signage crowd could really learn from this. How could we “mash” rather than keep trying to “smash” each other?