Multi-location brands are almost twice as interested in exploring artificial intelligence for analytics as they were last year, according to Street Fight’s latest survey. But there’s a significant disconnect between their perception of what’s most useful about AI and what suppliers of local marketing tech and services think about that same question.
Multi-location brands that use reputation and review management to manage local marketing and advertising are more likely to say that their marketing efforts are effective, according to Street Fight’s latest survey. Analysis of the survey identified several related strategies that correlated strongly with marketing effectiveness, including trying to respond to every review and working with a reputation specialist with its own technology.
Many multi-location brands still find some traditional media more effective than most digital tactics and focus their digital efforts on the corporate e-commerce site or company branding. But an aggressive group of budget shifters are increasing spending across a variety of digital advertising and marketing vehicles, often with a local focus.
By now, consequences of the negative aura surrounding Facebook’s role in customer info abuse, fake news, and Russian political meddling should have started to take hold. Yet over half of local merchants we polled said they would continue to use Facebook as they had previously, and only one in five said they may use it less.
Location data and analytics are a key R&D priority both now and in the longer term for companies supplying technologies and services to the connected local economy, according to Street Fight’s latest reader survey. Those companies deem AI and voice technology as two areas that require investment now, with an eye on a later payoff.
Companies selling local marketing and technology and services continue to believe that online-to-offline attribution is the toughest challenge facing the industry, and it’s now their top near-term R&D priority. That’s what we’re hearing from a preliminary analysis of our annual State of Hyperlocal survey of Street Fight readers.
Multi-location brands have been a little slower to embrace digital technologies in support of their local marketing and advertising than SMBs, but that’s changing pretty fast. The biggest of those companies still tend to be a little conservative, but they’re shifting digital spending towards local and adopting a broader variety of tactics.
Instead of integrating multi-media news consumption with entertainment, community conversations, events calendars, advertising, and a buyers and sellers marketplace, Facebook is isolating them as components. While this is consistent with its separate apps approach, it likely won’t result in as much audience cross-fertilization as it should. Nor does it feel at all local advertiser-friendly.