Street Smart Moves | Street Fight

Facebook Replaces Places

The Editors

Facebook Replaces Places

Just a year after launching its location-based service, Places, which let people use their mobile devices to post their whereabouts to their profiles, Facebook is killing it off. FourSquare and its ilk shouldn’t be too psyched. While Places wasn’t a hit—did you use it?—Facebook is planning to include location features all over the, er, place. Users can add locations to photos and to their profiles, and do it from smartphone, desktop and everything in between. Considering that plenty of people are complaining about social networking overload, that’s smart

Patch and Profitability

The Editors

Patch and Profitability

Deep-ish into a story about AOL’s growth this week. The Wall Street Journal tucked this tasty nugget of information: AOL is spending about $160 million a year on Patch, which equates to about $150,000 to run each individual Patch site annually, according to an analyst’s estimate. 

It begs the obvious question of whether AOL will–or even can–make a profit from this enterprise…

Bloomspot Leads an Industry Shift

The Editors

Bloomspot Leads an Industry Shift

Who: Bloomspot

What: $40 million in funding and a merchant guarantee

With all the chatter about Groupon’s updated IPO filings this week, and news that Patch is offering up daily deals in 800 (not a typo) hyperlocal markets, a couple of announcements from Bloomspot didn’t get as much attention as they otherwise might. The company said that it had scored a whopping $40 million in new funding, and revealed that it is using the data it collects to guarantee that deals they do will be profitable to vendors, or Bloomspot will cover the difference from its cut. There are a couple of important takeaways from all this news…

Goshi Goes Live

The Editors

Goshi Goes Live

This week saw the debut of Goshi (formerly MapDing), a hyperlocal mobile marketplace incubated by the Chicago-based Exelerate. What’s interesting is that startups are gunning hard for Craigslist turf.

American Express Gets Into Daily Deals

The Editors

American Express Gets Into Daily Deals

Who isn’t getting into the daily deals space? That’s becoming a tough question to answer. The latest company to get on the bandwagon in AmEx–and it looks like they have some very intelligent twists on the concept that will help convince customers to spend more.

Gilt City Takes Facebook Further

The Editors

Gilt City Takes Facebook Further

Last spring, an intriguing New York Magazine profile discussed some of the challenges Gilt Groupe faced as it grew bigger and more popular. Among them was the loss of its aura of exclusivity and community. At the very end of the article was revealed a long-term strategy…

Yelp: Going Mobile

The Editors

Yelp: Going Mobile

Yelp is wisely leveraging one of its major strengths–its mobile popularity–to get up in Groupon’s grill. Yelp users regularly use its mobile features to decide where to eat, drink and shop when they’re out and about. Now they get instant info on nearby Yelp Deals as well, which should help boost sales and give the company more leverage with its local vendors…

Loopt: Re-Energizing the Deal Business

Laura Rich

Loopt: Re-Energizing the Deal Business

Our pick in this week’s Street Smart Moves is Loopt. Daily deals is a hackneyed formula already, but Loopt is trying to bring some innovation to the fore by letting consumers pick their own deals. What Loopt is doing is almost exactly the answer to John Wannamaker’s famous quote about not knowing which half of his advertising worked (but knowing half did): By letting consumers suggest the items they want deals on, merchants will know what will sell.

Edmunds’ Drive for a Daily Deal

Laura Rich

Edmunds’ Drive for a Daily Deal

The single-best deal, assertion, investment or other strategy this week…

Who: Edmunds…

Why: For its bid to play in daily deals for cars

“It helps automakers and dealers who have excess inventory or oversupply of specific models, or have a need to get rid of the past model-year vehicles through additional discounts. So it is intended to be very targeted to areas that need that focused conversation around certain vehicles.”Michelle Denogean, VP of business operations at Edmunds.com

Main Street’s Need for Speed

Laura Rich

Main Street’s Need for Speed

The single-best deal, assertion, investment or other strategy this week.

Who: Main Street Connect

Why: For its plan to scale up to 6,000 hyperlocal sites across the country in a few short years

Advertisers typically want to reach more than a single town. If independent community news site proprietors are making good dough, why aren’t they propagating, sharing their news prowess with neighbor towns? That’s what we’ll be doing with our profits — reinvest, reinvest, reinvest, so our products and processes get more and more excellent..Carll Tucker, Main Street Connect CEO

Groupon and Foursquare: A Happy Combo

Laura Rich

Groupon and Foursquare: A Happy Combo

The single-best deal, assertion, investment or other strategy this week.

Who: Groupon and Foursquare

Why: For considering a partnership that ties check-ins to daily deals

Daily deals leader Groupon and social location innovator Foursquare are in partnership talks, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter. The arrangement is likely to see Groupon deals targeted to Foursquare users’ check-ins. Mobile app users who tell their friends that they’re in the vicinity of a venue offering a discount are obviously prime customers...

Google’s Plan for Places: Third-Party Data

Laura Rich

Google’s Plan for Places: Third-Party Data

How does the saying go? “If you can’t beat them, join them”? Google Places’ market share trails that of rival Facebook, and Yelp, so it’s taking the portal approach: add a feed of any of your check-in services, and it’ll link up with ratings data found on Google Places. It hasn’t officially partnered with Foursquare or any other service, but that’s exactly the kind of data likely to be added.

Making Peace (and Money) with Local Newspapers

Laura Rich

Making Peace (and Money) with Local Newspapers

The single-best deal, assertion, investment or other strategy out there.

Who: Gothamist

Why: Because they’ve turned over their hyperlocal ad sales to a local newspaper, the Village Voice

“It’s still ramping up, but I’ve noticed they’ve been selling more each week. For us, the rationale is that it gives us coverage in three verticals that we can’t easily do ourselves – real estate, restaurants and bars. That lets our sales team focus on the verticals they are good at, and sourcing national deals. As long as their performance continues, we’ll begin expanding to the other cities we both have properties in – Los Angeles will be next,” Jake Dobkin, co-founder and publisher of Gothamist, wrote in an email today.

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The Merging of Location and Daily Deals = Possible Success

Laura Rich

The Merging of Location and Daily Deals = Possible Success

The single-best deal, assertion, investment or other strategy of the week...

Who: Beyond and Social-Loco

Why: For digging into the data behind check-ins.

There is an opportunity for big brands to engage consumers in location-based apps by tapping into and combing multiple motivations (discounts, learning, promoting, meeting friends). To reach beyond the early adopters, brands should focus their strategies around Facebook and Groupon as the two platforms that will most likely drive adoption. David Hargreaves, CEO, Beyond

Facebook’s Deal

Laura Rich

Facebook’s Deal

The single-best deal, assertion, investment or other strategy of the week.

Who: Facebook

What for: Giving the deals business a shot.

“While many Deals on Facebook offer discounts, it’s more important to us that you find interesting experiences around you to do with friends. We’ve worked with partners and local businesses to help deliver the best social activities in your area. And once you’ve found a deal you like, having the deal on Facebook makes it easy to share, buy and plan with your friends.
Emily White, Facebook

Where eBay Gets Local

Laura Rich

Where eBay Gets Local

The single-best deal, assertion, investment or other strategy of the week

Who: eBay…

What for: Buying location-based service and ad network Where…

“Local commerce companies like Where are blurring the lines between in-store and online shopping. By giving people hyper-local, relevant retailer information and deals on their mobile phones, we see a huge opportunity for local merchants to reach more buyers, and for consumers to get more choice and value when they shop.” Amanda Pires, eBay