A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal content, commerce, and technology.
At AOL Under Tim Armstrong, the Only Constant Is Change (AdAge)
The number of people who visit AOL properties has not increased in the past three years, and ad revenue, while mostly steady, has yet to show sustained growth. His two biggest financial bets — local-news network Patch and the Huffington Post and its live-video network HuffPost Live — have yet to contribute significant benefits to the topline.
Yelp Hits 100 Million Uniques as Users Shift to Mobile (Street Fight)
Yelp reported mixed earnings on Wednesday as wider than expected losses tempered strong revenue growth in the fourth quarter. The reviews site brought in $41.2 million during the quarter, taking its annual revenue to $137.6 million for 2012. The overwhelming majority of its revenue growth came on the backs of local advertisers as brand spending remained flat.
Made To Order: Big Moves In Online Food Delivery (ReadWrite)
A flurry of major moves in the space practically scream that online, specifically mobile, is becoming the new driving force in food sales. And it’s not just one company leading the charge; several are demonstrating that digital devices are the hunting and gathering tools of our society.
Big Data and Local Search: The Netflix Precedent (Street Fight)
Damian Rollison: We’ve entered an era when product decisions can be made not by analysis of demographics or user testing but by extremely fine-tuned measurements of current user activities. For local search, the question becomes just how many of our passive online activities can be converted into data points to be examined for purposes of marketing and product development?
Report: Geo-Aware, Geofenced Ads Outperform Other LoMo Targeting (Screenwerk)
Greg Sterling: Location based ad network Verve Mobile has released a year-end report that highlights data and case studies from 2,500 campaigns run on its network in 2012. The overall message of the Verve report is that locally targeted ads and ads with localized content outperform other types of mobile ads.
Study: 14.7 Million People Engaged ‘Locally’ with Retail Brands in Q4 (Street Fight)
A new report by the Location-Based Marketing Association and local analytics company Venuelabs looks at the amount and quality of ‘local’ consumer interactions. As local actions like reviewing, checking-in, or posting a photo become ubiquitous across platforms the volume of location-specific (vs. brand specific) it’s clear that digital engagement with brick-and-mortar businesses has exploded.
Google Revamps AdWords in Nod to Mobile Device Explosion (GigaOm)
With more people jumping from laptop to tablet to smartphone, Google has decided it’s time to tweak Adwords to make it easier to manage advertising campaigns targeting each of those platforms. The unstated rationale is that click rates for mobile ads aren’t exactly setting the world on fire, and breaking down the division will solve the mobile problem.
Case Study: Bakery Relies on Hyperlocal Press, Yelp Reviews for New Customers (Street Fight)
When Donna Lawson first opened Stuffed Cakes, she ran a series of daily deal promotions through CBS Local and Urban Dealight to spread the word about her Seattle-based bakery. Now two years later, Lawson relies primarily on press mentions on hyperlocal sites like the West Seattle Blog, as well as positive reviews on Yelp, to get new customers coming through the door.
Nav App Waze Says 36M Users Shared 900M Reports, While 65K Users Made 500M Map Edits (TechCrunch)
Waze grew rapidly in 2012, hitting a milestone of 200 million users in July after doubling that number in six months. In total, 36 million drivers in 110 countries shared 90 million user reports (including traffic and road condition alerts) last year.
Urban Airship Raises $25M to Push its Messaging Message (GigaOm)
In-app push messaging specialist Urban Airship bulked up its wallet with $25 million in new funds, raised from August Capital and its previous investors. Late last year, the company acquired SimpleGeo, adding a location-aware component to its push messaging platform, and Tello so it could expand its marketing and branding business into Apple’s Passbook digital wallet.