A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Walmart to Discount Some Online Orders When Picked Up At the Store (WSJ)
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. wants to make its brick-and-mortar stores a stronger asset as it battles with Amazon.com Inc. online. The retailer plans next week to offer discounts on some online orders when customers opt for in-store pickup instead of home delivery.
What Happens When Google Can Manipulate the Very News It Seeks to Protect? (Street Fight)
Mike Blumenthal: A recent controversy finds the search giant caught in a contradiction. The company has strong financial interest in acting as the gatekeeper to the news. But Google also has a strong interest in portraying itself positively in the news that it effectively controls.
Just Released: 2017 Local Searching Ranking Factors Survey Results (Search Engine Land)
At the risk of oversimplifying what it takes to rank in local search results in 2017, links and reviews are hot. That’s one of the many conclusions drawn by more than three dozen local SEOs who have come together in the 2017 Local Search Ranking Factors survey, just published yesterday.
Disney’s Deep Dive on Personality Research, and Its Potential Implications for Brand Marketers (Street Fight)
A division of The Walt Disney Company has been working on a method to better target marketing by learning more about consumers’ personalities. Research scientist Maarten Bos spoke to us about how consumer personality can be understood and how the information can be used to tailor ads more precisely.
Uber’s Head of Communications, Rachel Whetstone, Is Leaving (Recode)
According to an internal email from Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, the company’s high-profile head of communications and policy Rachel Whetstone is departing after two years.
New York’s Beleaguered Startup Scene Looks for a Win with Yext IPO (VentureBeat)
However one wishes to measure entrepreneurial success, New York City’s overhyped startup scene has generally failed to deliver. The city’s top 15 exits of venture-backed companies since 2012 represent a total valuation that is dwarfed by the recent IPO of Los Angeles-based Snap.
How a Mormon Church-Owned Site Defeated Craigslist in Utah (The Atlantic)
The familiar lament goes like this: Newspapers once enjoyed monopolies on classified ads, the “rivers of gold” that subsidized their whole operation. Then came Craigslist—web-based, sometimes sketchy, but free!—and, well, that was that. And yet, there is one place in America where that is not so.
Shopkick’s Rewards Shopping App Expands to Grocery Stores (TechCrunch)
The company today is launching a new feature called Shopkick Grocery, to move its business into the area of grocery awards. The app will dole out gift cards to consumers who engage with brands’ content.
Brand Executives Have Misunderstood What Kind of Online Experience Customers Want (Quartz)
Brands—and the executives running them—know a strong digital presence is no longer optional. But less clear is what customers are seeking from their technologically enhanced experiences.