A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Geofeedia Raises $17M to Help Businesses Tap Into Social Location Data (TechCrunch)
Geofeedia, a startup that pulls real-time, location-based data from social media, has raised $17 million in Series B funding. Co-founder and CEO Phil Harris said the company “invented a new way of organizing social data” — most other analytics tools allow businesses to look at the data based on things like keywords and hashtags, while Geofeedia is focused on location.
Patch Rebounds After Split From AOL (Wall Street Journal)
Two years after beginning an overhaul of hyperlocal online media service Patch, turnaround specialist Hale Global said its efforts are bearing fruit. Patch attracted over 23 million users in January, up from 10 million in August 2014, and the company said it’s profitable and plans to expand this year. Patch’s network now consists of over 900 community-specific sites in 23 states.
As Mobile Ordering Platforms Evolve, Expect More Personalization and Integration (Street Fight)
Consumers are more likely to seek out restaurants that accept mobile orders, with 34 percent saying that technology is the reason why they’re ordering takeout more frequently. To keep these customers excited and engaged, vendors have to keep innovating and improving. Here are some predictions from top executives about where things are headed.
Why Would Amazon Want To Be the New Barnes & Noble? (New Yorker)
The great secret for ecommerce companies is that physical stores can be arranged to offer the benefits of both the location and online, drawing people in but driving online sales, too. This is what Amazon appears to have done with its test store in Seattle, integrating consumer product reviews on its shelf displays, stocking books that sell well online, allowing for instant payment with Amazon technology, and offering unified online and in-store pricing.
New President’s Focus at Hearst Digital: ‘News Users Can’t Get Anywhere Else’ (Street Fight)
“Many quality news sites with paywalls equate ‘premium’ with ‘quality journalism,’ where the paywall encircles the most expensive, ambitious, and time-consuming public-service journalism,” said Rob Barrett, who recently took over as president of Hearst Newspapers Digital. “That’s not how the minds of consumers necessarily work.”
Gravy Partners with Mobilewalla to Build Audiences Based On Local Events (MediaPost)
Location-based behavioral analytics provider Gravy has announced a partnership with Mobilewalla, a marketing automation company, to segment audiences based on their attendance of events and activities in their local communities.
Yahoo Once Again Bets On Search (San Francisco Chronicle)
In Yahoo’s big shakeup, CEO Marissa Mayer said she plans on investing in the three pillars that “make Yahoo, Yahoo” — communications, content, and search. Search has proven a particularly big challenge for the company. “We see mobile search as the biggest opportunity,” Mayer said. “Search is obviously essential to discovery, and the lucrative nature of search makes it important to our overall business.”
Amazon Echo Can Now Order Your Pizza (TechCrunch)
Amazon’s Echo device, which is becoming a hub for your smartphone, can order pizza for you. The feature is being made available by way of a third-party app from delivery chain Domino’s, which has been experimenting with new digital ordering systems over the past year.
Google’s Head of Search Is Retiring After 15 Years (The Next Web)
Google’s SVP of search, Amit Singhal, is leaving the company. Singhal is known for having heavily tweaked the search engine’s ranking algorithm in 2001 and was a driving force in making Google into the company we know now.