A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Starwood’s Keyless Entry Takes Self-Service To A New Level (GigaOm)
Later this week, ten Starwood hotels will let customers use their smartphones to unlock their hotel room doors, bypassing the front desk for check-in. When those customers’ rooms are ready, they will get a notification along with their key code, and then they can just pop into the hotel and go directly to their room.
Why Mobile Marketing Isn’t a Fit for Every SMB (Street Fight)
Todd Bairstow: Small businesses are being bombarded by marketing programs that promise to deliver calls, customers, and sales right from a prospect’s cell phone. But the facts on the ground indicate that mobile marketing is, at best, a mixed bag so far for most small businesses.
Square Looks to Expand its Reach Through Deals With Major Brands (The Street)
Fighting to remain relevant in the mobile payments world, Square is expanding its reach to not just the small business clientele that have been its bread and butter, but larger brands, including Uniqlo, Burberry and Lululemon. San Francisco-based Square, led by CEO Jack Dorsey, has increasingly looked to larger, multi-national corporations to boost its presence in the mobile payments field.
PlaceIQ Preps For Next Step, Hires Experian’s Nadya Kohl (AdExchanger)
Mobile ad targeting start-up PlaceIQ is prepping to enter its next phase – or as Nadya Kohl, the company’s new SVP of business development, says, it’s about to enter adolescence. While Kohl declined to specify which companies PlaceIQ wanted to work with, she said she had “distinct criteria” for choosing new partners.
Malls Fill Vacant Stores With Server Rooms (Wall Street Journal)
As America’s retailers struggle to keep up with online shopping, the Internet is starting to settle into some of the very spaces where brick-and-mortar customers used to shop. The shift brings welcome tenants to some abandoned stretches of the suburban landscape, though it doesn’t replace all the jobs and sales-tax revenue that local communities lost when stores left the building.
‘The Yelp Of Business Software’ Springs Out Of Ping-Pong Culture At Virginia Company (Washington Post)
The 15-year-old Capterra runs a Web site that helps businesses find the right software for their company. Capterra lists more than 300 software sectors on its Web site, offering reviews of software. The reviews must be signed by the author’s name, and Capterra has a team that constantly polices the reviews.
Burger King to Accept PayPal (TechCrunch)
On the heels of McDonald’s working with Apple to let iPhone users buy Big Macs and more using Apple Pay, PayPal — Apple’s burgeoning rival in payments — has inked a deal with McD’s long-time fast-food competitor, Burger King, to power a mobile payment service at its chain of restaurants.
VCs Bill Gurley, Peter Thiel clash over Uber (CNBC)
The lofty valuations of some Silicon Valley start-ups have come into question lately, with a few noted venture capitalists arguing over ride-sharing service Uber in particular. Bill Gurley, who led investments in many noteworthy tech start-ups, including Snapchat and Twitter, defended the ride-sharing service in a CNBC interview on Monday.
The Plane Crash That Gave Americans GPS (Atlantic)
The U.S. had already launched into orbit almost a dozen satellites that could help locate its military craft, on land, in the air, or on the sea. But the Reagan administration sped up the implementation of location-finding services for civilian use after the Soviet military shot down a passenger aircraft.
7 Quick Local Hits To Optimize For Black Friday & Cyber Mondays This Season (Search Engine Land)
The biggest shopping days of the year are coming up fast, but there are still things you can do to prepare and pump up your sales further. Here are a few Local SEO quick-hitters that can improve your performance in 2014.