Consumers Welcome Some Automated Business Messaging, But Humans Must Tag Along to Help

More than half of consumers are frustrated by customer-service situations in which they can only interact with automated agents, and nearly one in five even reporting feeling angry in those situations. That’s per a new survey of U.S. consumers conducted by The Harris Poll and commissioned by call tracking and analytics firm Invoca.

How to Use Facebook’s Simplified Campaign Structure to Your Advantage

It’s a brave new advertising world. The algorithms are taking over, whether human advertising managers like it or not. Our best bet is to understand how the algorithms work and to give them the freedom, the data, the budgets, and the creative assets they need for optimal performance.  The Facebook algorithm will take away budget lever from humans when Campaign Budget Optimization becomes mandatory in September 2019.

Letter From the Editor: Retail Transformation Rules

As we continue to evolve the definition of “local,” one key component of its market opportunity is offline brick-and-mortar shopping. After all, about 90% of all U.S. retail spending, to the tune of about $3.7 trillion, is completed offline in physical stores. And that’s usually in proximity to one’s home (thus, local).

This makes retail transformation a key focal point for Street Fight. And there’s a lot happening.

Urban Airship Rebrands as Airship, Offers Broad Suite of Mobile Customer Engagement Solutions

In a bid to expand its solutions well beyond push notifications, marketing firm Urban Airship is dropping the qualifier Urban from its name and launching a new identity as Airship, a customer engagement company that works with brands to target and coordinate customer interactions across apps, websites, SMS, email, mobile wallets, and other emerging channels.

AI Is No Magic Bullet for Policing Hateful Content

The task Facebook must take up as it attempts to police hateful content is one inseparable from political values, human judgment, and the interpretation of statements that need to be parsed by well-trained eyes and bright minds with a stomach for horror to boot. While machines will play an indispensable role in content moderation on a platform of Facebook’s scale, they will be far from sufficient. That’s because monitoring hate speech touches on nothing less than some of humanistic inquiry’s age-old questions: the debatable violence, status of truth, and foundations of meaning in language.

Measuring the Impact of McDonald’s Push Into Automation, Personalization

With the right personalization and automation technology in place, McDonald’s is said to have plans to learn about customers through their ordering behaviors. More specifically, McDonald’s is planning to use Dynamic Yield’s technology to create a drive-thru menu that can be tailored based on factors like weather, restaurant traffic, and trending menu items. For example, when the temperature tops 100 degrees, milkshakes and ice cream sundaes might move into a prominent spot on the drive-thru menu board. When it starts raining outside, coffee and hot chocolate might take top billing.

Automated Ad Targeting Ensnares Facebook in a Discrimination Lawsuit

The lawsuit is big news not just for Facebook or for housing-related ads but for the digital advertising industry as a whole. That’s because it marks the first major federal attempt to use the resources of the law to curb ad targeting on the basis of racial discrimination. As interest in regulating broad tech spreads across the country and political spectrum, the lawsuit could prove a harbinger of harsher laws to come.

Google Is Increasingly Taking the Reins in Managing Campaigns for Advertisers

Boosting its appeal beyond the reams of consumer data and stranglehold on search that make its digital advertising business the most expansive in the world, Google is increasingly executing campaigns for advertisers, deploying both automation and its own ad experts to get the job done.

Trending Now: Brands Shifting Mobile Ad Budgets from Facebook to Google UAC

Brian Bowman: There’s an emerging trend in the advertising industry—for the first time, brands are shifting significant mobile advertising budgets from Facebook ads to Google Universal App Campaigns (UAC). While Facebook advertising has largely dominated mobile marketing budgets, this migration of budgets to Google’s platform has been a helpful shift to diversify risk tied to any single platform. Why is this shift happening now, and what does it mean for brands?

6 Marketing Automation Tools for Small Businesses

Small business owners have enough on their plates, without having to manually manage repetitive marketing tasks. Here are six marketing automation systems that local merchants can use to build smarter local marketing campaigns…

Chart: The Local Marketing Landscape

The shift from print to digital is old news, but what’s shaking up the industry is the introduction of cloud-based business management systems — for everything from payments and point-of-sale to schedule — into the marketing mix. Marketers can write algorithms to connect supply and demand, automating the way businesses and consumers interact locally. Yelp meets Booker. Facebook meets OpenTable. These combinations will bring together consumer data from every stage of the purchase funnel, automate marketing plans and messaging, and reduce implementation and sales costs for both marketers and solutions providers…