A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Google’s Making It Easier to Figure Out if Online Ads Actually Drive In-Store Traffic (AdWeek)
Google wants to prove to advertisers that there’s a direct correlation between someone seeing a search ad and then going into a brick-and-mortar store. The tech giant is rolling out a new tool called “store visits” that gives marketers some insight into which types of search ad motivate people to go to a store.
Openings and New Hires at Dex Media, Yext, Angie’s List, and LocalVox (Street Fight)
Every two weeks, Kelly Benish — who knows practically everyone in hyperlocal — covers some of the latest job changes taking place in this dynamic industry. In this week’s edition, new jobs and hires at Microsoft, Colony Logic, Soleo, PlaceIQ, Fixya, and Placed.
Square Is Resurrecting Wallet, Its Pay-By-Name Mobile App, And Giving It Away (ReadWrite)
Wallet, the pay-by-name app that payments company Square introduced in 2011 and discontinued earlier this year, is back, according to an email Square sent to users Thursday. “There’s been a lot of talk in the Valley about Wallet failing,” Johnny Brackett, a Square spokesperson, says. “Wallet didn’t fail, but it did need to evolve.”
Lessons Learned From the Call Analytics Trenches (Street Fight)
Manpreet Singh: It may be a long time before the true value of call analytics data is fully realized, but I’ve been recording the digital marketing revolution one (often uncertain) hello at a time.
Can Wal-Mart Clerks Ship as Fast as Amazon Robots? (Wall Street Journal)
Retailers’ answer to the threat of Amazon.com is something called ‘omnichannel’—an attempt to use one set of inventory and assets to fill all orders. Wal-Mart, Macy’s and Target are relying on the approach more heavily than ever this holiday season.
McDonald’s Increases Sales By Beaming Offers To Smartphones In Beacon Pilot (9 to 5 Google)
McDonald’s is testing Bluetooth beacon-based offers in at least some of its locations as it pilots beacon platform Piper that works with both Android devices and iOS devices using Apple’s iBeacon framework. Piper said it experienced 18,000 offer redemptions as “McChicken sales increased 8 percent and McNuggets increased 7.5 percent from the previous month.”
Sony Leaks Hint At Snapchat’s Retail Ambitions (Digiday)
Emails leaked in the recent hack of Sony Pictures Entertainment have revealed that Snapchat is looking to serve users more location-specific media. The emails show that Snapchat earlier this year acquired 4-year-old tech startup Scan, an app aimed at helping brands use QR codes and beacons to market to users.
Psst! It’s Me, the Mannequin. This Would Look Great on You. (New York Times)
Retailers are experimenting with mannequins that communicate electronically with customers’ smartphones, hoping to lure them into the store. They are one of the latest efforts by the struggling retail industry to lure customers away from the Internet and back into brick-and-mortar stores.
LivingSocial’s New CEO Eyes An Experience-oriented Future (Los Angeles Times)
New LivingSocial CEO Gautom Thakar’s vision could revamp how the daily deals company distributes its offers. And having joined LivingSocial after about a decade at EBay the seasoned executive has a few ideas on what it takes to reshape a business that relies heavily on community involvement.
SMB Churn and the Potential Return of ‘Guaranteed Clicks’ (Local Search Insdier)
Greg Sterling: It’s becoming more and more unwieldy to ask reps to explain multiple products, though some things will still need to be explained. The challenge is for vendors/sales channels to keep pace with the rapidly changing market and to simplify the pitch for both the reps and the business owner, while providing enough transparency to generate trust.
Restaurant Discovery Service Zomato Acquires Italy’s Cibando (TechCrunch)
Zomato, the restaurant search and discovery service backed by Vy Capital, Info Edge, and Sequoia Capital, continues to be on an acquisition spree as a means to accelerate its international expansion.
LBMA Podcast: Maps on Clothes, Smart Screens (Street Fight)
On the show: TGI Fridays’ drone attack; Health Insurance benefits with Misfit; search as signal by Mindshare and Google; Monochrome; pop-up Libraries; smart screens by Photon and Panasonic; eBay Australia’s 24-hour Christmas Windows.