A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Overvalued in Silicon Valley, but Don’t Say ‘Tech Bubble’ (New York Times)
It is a wild time in Silicon Valley. But the tech industry’s venture capitalists — the financiers who bet on companies when they are little more than an idea — are going out of their way to avoid the one word that could describe what is happening around them: Bubble.
Why Local Search Is the Key to Groupon’s Turnaround (Street Fight)
Steven Jacobs: As executives look to wean the company off an increasingly challenging email marketing strategy and reposition it as a go-to marketplace, the company has invested considerably in building the infrastructure to compete for the hundreds of millions of local shoppers who pass through Google each day.
Uber Hard at Work on Effort to Replace Drivers With Machines (Pando)
Uber wants to develop self-driving cars because that could help it remove one of its biggest costs — the human beings who drive Uber’s customers around. So remember to tip your Uber drivers, kids, because pretty soon they’ll be replaced with autonomous vehicles that don’t need a cut of Uber’s revenues.
Local Media Consortium’s ‘Legacy’ Members Make Big Moves in Content and Revenue (Street Fight)
Tom Grubisich: The LMC recently agreed to two deals that will give the 1,600 digital operations of its 61 members more tools and better opportunities to assemble audiences that are bigger and more engaged and can be served up to advertisers in a variety of pick-and-choose consumer profiles.
How Everyone Gets the ‘Sharing’ Economy Wrong (Wall Street Journal)
Christopher Mims: Ride-sharing companies, like many other firms in the “sharing economy,” allow for a new kind of employment—sometimes called fractional employment—in which people can take on extra work when and if they need it. The key to fractional employment is flexibility for both these companies and their workers.
Research Reveals The Distinct Ways Users Search (SearchEngineLand)
Although it is among the first tasks completed in the search marketing journey, keyword analysis is arguably its most crucial element. The keywords the marketer chooses will go a long way to defining the success of the program, from visits to engagement to revenue.
Want SMBs’ Business? Here’s What They Look For (eMarketer)
Price was the most important factor when selecting a digital marketing vendor, cited by nearly one-third of respondents. But SMBs weren’t going to shell out unless vendors showed that they understood their organizational needs and goals.
The Declining Value of U.S. Newspapers (Pew Research)
Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos may have stunned many with his $250 million purchase of The Washington Post, which was last sold at auction in 1933, but other recent sales of major papers show dramatic devaluation and suggest a tough road ahead for the newspaper industry.
Not All Bots Are Trying to Rip Off Digital Advertisers (AdWeek)
It’s been estimated that anywhere from 56 percent to 62 percent of Internet traffic is automated, meaning that ads routinely go unseen by actual people at a startling rate. But what has not been revealed until now is that a significant number of bots — or computerized drivers of traffic — do not set out to pillage brands.
In-Store Beacons Mature, Make Shopping Personal (eContent)
“The most important thing companies need to be aware of is that beacons are worthless without a solid marketing strategy,” says Rebecca Schuette, director of marketing for Swirl. Beacon technology is “just technology” without “a clear, defined set of goals” for the data collected, she says.