Street Fight Daily: Uber’s $50B Question, Ford Tests Showroom Beacons

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

The $50 Billion Question: Can Uber Deliver? (Wall Street Journal)
For more than a year, Uber has been trying to build “an urban logistics fabric” that enables drivers who shuttle passengers with the tap of a smartphone to pick up food, grocery items and packages along the way. So far, though, this same-day delivery program has failed to create partnerships and meet expectations. (Subscription required.)

#SFSW15 VIDEO: Here’s What Google Looks for in a Small Business Channel Partner (Street Fight)
At Street Fight Summit West earlier this month, Google business development executive Jon Sofield broke down the search giant’s strategy for identifying small business technology partners and maximizing the impact of co-op market development funds.

Ford to Use Beacons to Beckon Buyers (Wards Auto)
Ford is set to begin a pilot program that will employ the same type of electronic devices used to track inventory in manufacturing to pitch vehicles on the sales floor to interested shoppers. The company envisions the use of beacons as a natural evolution of a more independent sales process that now starts for most customers on the Internet.

Movie Theaters Missing the Mark on Local Advertising Battle (Street Fight)
A recent analysis by digital marketing company Where2GetIt for its “Brand Battle” series on Street Fight compared the local success of AMC Theaters and Regal Cinemas. A winner between the two did emerge — AMC, by a hair — even though both companies could do better to address their local marketing strategies.

5 Ad Tools for Targeting Consumers Based on Offline Behavior (Street Fight)
Offline behavioral data is becoming easier for businesses to track and manage thanks to a growing number of advertising marketplaces. Here are five examples of tools that brands can use to target consumers based on their offline behaviors or activities.

Report for America: A Community Service-Based Model for Saving Local Journalism (Columbia Journalism Review)
For local news, the ad-based business model does not generate enough revenue to pay enough reporters to do enough reporting. As a result, communities are not being well served by journalistic institutions. It’s time for a dramatic new approach grounded in community service.

Google Maps Now Warns if a Store Will Close Before You Arrive (Mashable)
Now, when a user enters the address of their destination in the app, they’ll see a warning: “Your destination may be closed by the time you arrive.” This would be followed by the hours that place is normally open, and your ETA should you decide to go ahead regardless.

Beauty Booking Site Wahanda Raises Another $73M, Buys ZenSoon To Expand Into France (TechCrunch)
Wahanda, the UK startup that has built a platform for beauty salons and consumers to find and book appointments based on time and location, continues on its march to expand by rolling up regional rivals. Today the company is announcing that it has picked up a further $73 million in funding, and that it is buying ZenSoon, a beauty platform in France.

Gannett shuts down Atlanta’s BLiNQ Media (Atlanta Business Chronicle)
Three years after buying Atlanta-based BLiNQ Media for a reported $40 million, Gannett has abruptly shut down the company. BLiNQ, part of G/O Digital, a Gannett company, provides real-time, local social marketing. Employees were told the company no longer fit Gannett’s future growth strategy.

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