Sonar bridges the online and the offline worlds by allowing users to leverage -- in real life -- all the data about themselves and their preferences that they've spent a decade uploading to their online social networks. Sonar reveals to users the hidden connections they share with people nearby, and, in doing so, attaches all the preferences, Facebook 'Likes,' interests on Twitter, and online influence a person has cataloged to their physical self. With check-in services like Foursquare flourishing, and so many consumers now volunteering their location along with their preferences, the implications for marketers in the spreading of this layer of data over the real world are extraordinary. Brands are some of the most 'Liked' and followed interest nodes that consumers connect over, and affiliations or affinities for certain brands represent a huge component of how many people define themselves.
In the future we imagine Sonar allowing people to create and project their "mobile profile" to their environment, incorporating a number of elements: What are you shopping for? Who do you want to meet today? What did you think of the movie you just saw? What is your favorite brand of sneakers? These are just a few questions people will be able to answer and direct toward one another. As individuals become experts and build influence on particular topics, Sonar will allow marketers in the retail, food, and other entertainment categories to take note. For instance, when consumers who are fans of a particular TV show are simultaneously checked into a location together, special content could be revealed exclusively to them. This is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of how brands can and will partner with Sonar and leverage the new behavior and consumer data it unlocks.
Sonar is a mobile app that shows people how they are connected to others nearby by applying proprietary algorithms to publicly available social media data from networks like Foursquare, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Sonar shows every user a personalized list of the people present in any venue based on how closely they're connected. Based in New York City, Sonar was launched in May 2011 at TechCrunch Disrupt, where it took second place.