Street Fight Daily: Airbnb Tests Local Experiences, Patch Turns a Corner

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A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology

airbnbAirbnb Quietly Tests Selling Tours and Other ‘Experiences’ (VentureBeat)
Airbnb may soon expand to offer “experiences” (like local tours or classes) in addition to its core shared accommodations business. The company has been quietly testing out a platform for connecting visitors not just with places to stay, but with new offline “experiences” to try out while in town.

Study: Rampant Data Fraud Poses a Threat to the Mobile Advertising Industry (Street Fight)
According to a new report, roughly two-thirds of the location data which mobile publishers pass on to advertising exchanges, and eventually to marketers, is inaccurate. The report found that of the 67% of mobile advertising impressions, which include a latitude-longitude data, only a third can accurately predict the location of a user down to 100 meters.

Patch, a Network for Hyperlocal News, Turns a Corner (New York Times)
Under AOL, Patch grew into a network of hundreds of sites serving local communities, but it hemorrhaged cash. However, the charred remains were not the end of the story, says Hale Global, but the birth of a new and nimble company.

5 Ways to Track the Effectiveness of a Hyperlocal Campaign (Street Fight)
Sixty-four percent of businesses surveyed by Oracle in 2013 said that the ability to track marketing ROI has been the most important change in the marketing world, however the majority of local merchants still aren’t sure how to compare various hyperlocal channels and measure the effectiveness of different types of campaigns. Here are five strategies for doing just that.

PubMatic, xAd Team To Launch Location-Based Programmatic Marketplace For Mobile (MediaPost)
In a bid to capitalize on two of the largest trends in advertising today sell-side platform PubMatic has partnered with mobile ad platform xAd to launch a location-based marketplace for mobile advertising. It gives advertisers a place to exclusively buy ad inventory based on location and provides PubMatic’s publisher base an additional way to monetize mobile inventory.

Longtime Square CTO Bob Lee to Depart (Recode)
Square’s chief technical officer Bob Lee, who joined the company in 2010 from Google, is leaving the company. Originally hired to work on the company’s Android app, Lee was promoted to CTO in 2011.

Mapping Our Interiors (New York Times)
A Finnish company called IndoorAtlas has figured out that all buildings have a unique magnetic “fingerprint” — and has solved how to use that to determine locations inside a structure to within six feet. That is enough to take a consumer to a product in a crowded supermarket.

The Trick That Makes Google’s Self-Driving Cars Work (Atlantic)
The key to Google’s success has been that these cars aren’t forced to process an entire scene from scratch. Instead, their teams travel and map each road that the car will travel. And these are not any old maps. They are not even the rich, road-logic-filled maps of consumer-grade Google Maps.

Cashless Customers Hold Riches for Retailers (New York Times)
Behind the payment industry, there are other issues in play, including the jealous guarding of customer data. And there is an enormous amount of money to be made, especially for businesses catering to the cash-free consumer.

Last-Mile Local Marketing With Mobile: An #LSA14 Retrospective (MarketingLand)
Mobile devices are our own personal Sherpas — or, as Woz said in his popular keynote, “your most trusted advisor in the world.” Marketers are soaking up real-time info based on our location-based needs so they can reach relevant consumers’ hands whenever and wherever — ideally in the Last Mile of the purchase cycle.

Pingup Aggregates Local Booking Services, Brings New Scale to Market (Screenwerk)
Pingup aggregates booking engines, such as those listed above, and thus their small business customers. Then through an API Pingup syndicates and standardizes their booking services for a network of larger publishers.

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