A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal content, commerce, and technology
Attention, Shoppers: Store Is Tracking Your Cell (New York Times)
Nordstrom’s tracking experiment is part of a movement by retailers to gather data about in-store shoppers’ behavior and moods, using video surveillance and signals from their cellphones and apps to learn information as varied as their sex, how many minutes they spend in the candy aisle and how long they look at merchandise before buying it. All sorts of retailers are testing these technologies and using them to decide on matters like changing store layouts and offering customized coupons.
Why Local is the Future of Commerce (Street Fight)
Steven Jacobs: The past decade has seen a slow but persistent transformation in the set of services consumers use to navigate the local marketplace. The transformation began in search, but companies have since started to rethink the way we buy and retrieve these goods and services as well as the way business reward, and retain, past customers, creating a coordinated stack, to borrow a term from computing. As each piece of technology builds around the other, the whole starts to become greater than the sum of its parts.
A (Modest) Defense of Foursquare (Inc.)
Christine Lagorio: Foursquare is four years old. It’s no dinosaur, but as a village elder of New York’s tech start-up scene, it’s been the subject of plenty of scrutiny lately–well, pretty much ever since it took $41 million in debt financing this spring. With more than 160 employees, who have been through many modifications of the business plan, it’s natural that the company culture might be losing a little of that electricity that makes working at a start-up exhilarating.
7 Strategies for Maximizing the Success of SMB Social Media Campaigns (Street Fight)
More than four out of every five small businesses now use Facebook as a marketing vehicle, but that doesn’t mean merchants on Main Street have social media all figured out. Thirty-one percent of merchants who don’t use social media say they “don’t know how,” and 13% say they “don’t know what to post.” Here are seven strategies for maximizing the success of an existing social media campaign from a few of the experts who work in this field.
We Want Privacy From The Government, But We’re An Open Book On Social Media (Guardian)
It’s ironic that, at a time when many of us are outraged over the US government’s “spying”, quite a few of us are either willingly or unwittingly giving up some of our own civil liberties. Although there’s an important distinction to be made between information we voluntarily sign away and private data that’s seemingly subject to unwarranted searches and collection, many of us are inconsistent in our release of personal data that chronicles our whereabouts.
How Locu Became Every Local Business’s Personal Publisher (AllThingsD)
A little startup called Locu has inserted itself all over the local space — it’s now integrated with Yelp, TripAdvisor, Yellow Pages, OpenTable, CitySearch, Foursquare and every new Go Daddy business website registration — simply by being helpful.. The company has built profiles for more than one million businesses across the U.S. by doing the grunt work of sending out contractors to input and correct menus from restaurants and building a semantic analysis system to interpret all that data.
Public Media Join Non-Profit Startups to Collaborate, Fill Local News Gap (PBS MediaShift)
Public broadcasters have always done partnerships, but in the last year these and other public-media outlets have begun piecing together the infrastructure for local-news reports that will offer more than cutaways in “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.” Unfettered by the competitive pressures at commercial media, leveraging the trust in their brands, they are employing creative approaches: They are tying the knot in extraordinary mergers, divvying up the cost of reporters, sharing newsroom space and even engaging in joint fundraising with their partners.
NFC Is NOT Dead: Why Critics Are Digging Its Grave Far Too Soon (VentureBeat)
Just like cameras, MP3 audio players, GPS, and accelerometers, NFC must go through its own period of doubt and disillusionment until the market realizes the incredible value that could be delivered by integrating this technology into user handsets and other devices. Just like cameras, MP3 audio players, GPS, and accelerometers, NFC must go through its own period of doubt and disillusionment until the market realizes the incredible value that could be delivered by integrating this technology into user handsets and other devices.
Appeals Court Questions Merchants, Yelp In ‘Payola’ Case (MediaPost)
Merchants seeking to revive their “extortion” lawsuit against the Yelp faced some hard questions at a recent appellate hearing. The three-judge appellate panel that heard the case last Thursday pointed out that Yelp continually shuffles the order of reviews, and that any changes that occurred after merchants were contacted about potential ad purchases could have been coincidental.