A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Shoppers Flock to Apps, Shaking Up Retail (Wall Street Journal)
The so-called appification of shopping promises to radically transform the retail industry by creating new habits, reshaping sales tactics, and carving out winners and losers. Instead of placing one big order from a computer, shoppers are increasingly making smaller purchases in short bursts throughout the day on their phones, a phenomenon retailers call “snacking.” (Subscription required)
Facebook Bets on a Bot Resurgence, Chattier Than Ever (New York Times)
Facebook will open its Messenger app for any outside company to create a bot capable of interacting with people through chat. With the move, Facebook is aiming to usher in a new era of customer service by bringing together the 900 million regular monthly users of Messenger with the more than 15 million businesses that have an official brand page on Facebook, and is also testing advertising on chatbots as a potential source of revenue. AdAge: What marketers need to know about Facebook messenger.
Survey: How National-to-Local Marketers Plan to Grow Their Digital Budgets (Street Fight)
David Card: Street Fight recently surveyed decision makers at over 200 national-to-local marketers and found nearly half of them spend a third or more of their digital marketing budget in support of their franchises, branch offices, and distributors. The majority said they planned on increasing spending on social and mobile marketing, with email, display, and local websites also tapped for a boost.
The Newest Rainmakers at Publishers: Ecommerce Editors (Digiday)
With online advertising under pressure from all sides, publishers are increasingly looking to commerce to bolster revenue. That’s given rise to a new class of employee: the ecommerce editor. Publishers from Business Insider and Gawker to Hearst and BuzzFeed have added commerce to the revenue mix and hired out editorial staff that specializes in creating commerce-minded content.
Publishers Finding Success with Tech Niches Within Their Local Markets (Street Fight)
“Traditional media has national reach because if something has a big enough dollar sign next to it, it will get covered,” said Streetwise Media’s Reid Snyder. “We have national reach because we have this narrow and deep knowledge of local markets.”
Alcohol Delivery Market Competition Heats Up with Acquisition, Partnership (Austin Business Journal)
Austin-based alcohol delivery startup BrewDrop has been acquired by the New York company behind Delivery.com. Andrew Bell, BrewDrop’s CEO, has joined Delivery.com as director of market development and will oversee the company’s Texas expansion.
Search Budgets Decline in Q1 — First Time in More Than 6 Years (MediaPost)
In first-quarter 2016, U.S. marketers spent less on Google paid-search advertising for the first time since 2009. The report from IgnitionOne blames the drop in the cost-per-click for mobile advertising campaigns to a poor start for financial markets and additional advertising real estate.
Who’s Winning Online Food Delivery? GrubHub and Pizza (Forbes)
Silicon Valley has spent hundreds of millions of dollars trying to build the one restaurant marketplace to rule them all, most recently putting $127 million into DoorDash. But who’s winning right now? GrubHub, which represents 32 percent of all online food orders. The runners-up aren’t other tech companies, though — they’re pizza chains.