Groupon to Congress: We’re Tracking You for Your Own Good

Groupon has an exciting new idea. They’re going to track you through your cell phone at all times so they can send you the most relevant deals exactly when you need them. Out to lunch on Main Street — get 50% off a sandwich at the deli on the corner. Buying tickets at the movies? Here’s a discount on popcorn. No matter where you are. No matter what you’re doing, Groupon is going to find you. And did I mention you don’t have to have have their mobile app running at the time?

Two congressmen, and possibly several thousand mobile users, want to know more. According to an article in Reuters, House Bi-Partisan Privacy Caucus: Joe Barton from Texas and Edward Markey from Massachusetts have asked Groupon to clarify its data collection and privacy policies. Some of their curiosity stems from Groupon’s recently filed $750 million initial public offering. After that, it’s mostly sheer amazement that Groupon would be so cavalier about wholesale tracking.

The 140 Character At A Time Press Release

Yesterday, HubSpot announced their acquisition of social media marketing company oneforty. A big move for the SaaS inbound marketing provider indeed. What they did to announce it was pretty interesting as well.

In a blog post simply titled #Hub140 – @HubSpot Acquires Social Media Marketing Company @oneforty – http://bit.ly/Hub140 which is simply a pre-packaged tweet they went on to provide the story in 11 separate 140 character or less bites that had a “Tweet This” link at the end of each. In essence you could get the word out about any number of points of the acquisition quickly and easily while being able to pick and choose which point you wanted to highlight. Here’s a sample

Today @HubSpot acquired @oneforty, a social media marketing company based in Cambridge, MA. #Hub140 – http://bit.ly/Hub140 Tweet This

Foursquare Check In for Events Is Launched

In the Internet world launched is a relative term since most launches are done piecemeal and often further off in the future than you might suspect given the hype afforded most of these upgrades.

Foursquare’s new offering around events is no different in that it is only coming to the iPhone initially but don’t fret, they promise it will arrive on other platforms (they just don’t say when).

So what is this? It’s pretty simple. Foursquare has seen how people gum up the works by creating a variety of check in options around live events so they are simply going to control that process. Here’s a look screens for a sporting event and concert.

Separate Social Media or Do You Live Your Brand?

Specialist insurer Hiscox reports that only 13% of small business owners have no separation between their work and personal social media accounts and only 8% of respondents said they didn’t have a good balance between life and work. The other 92% are lying to themselves.

How many times have you sent a Tweet during dinner? Checked Facebook when the kids were waiting for the story you promised or blew off Sunday brunch to get one more article written and posted? Social media addiction is a problem for everyone, but for the small business owner, it’s even harder to cut the strings. Only 5% of the SMB owners said they didn’t work weekends and an even lower percent banned cell phones from the bedroom or dinner table.

Daily Deals on Dry Wall? HousingZone and Bizy Make it So

HousingZone, an online portal for builders, contractors and remodelers, is getting into the deal business with the help of BizyDeal.com.

Bizy is Groupon for small business with daily discounts on items such as job ads on LinkedIn, social media marketing services and a virtual receptionist. In October, they’ll be launching their first industry specific B2B deal site at HousingZone.com.

The new deal site will include discounts on building materials such as roofing supplies, plumping, lighting and doors. (Can’t have a building without doors!)

Tony Mancini, Group Director-Principal for HousingZone parent SGC Horizon said in a press release,

“The timing of HousingZone Deals couldn’t be better, as residential construction and remodeling have been hard hit by the recession. Powered by Bizy, HousingZone Deals will help builders and remodelers improve their bottom lines with heavily discounted goods and services while providing manufacturers with a powerful new channel to promote their products to a large and very targeted audience.”

The Android Diet: 1 Hour Per Day, Consume 67 Percent Apps and 33 Percent Web

Think of all the things that are advertised as being done in just an hour a day. In the Internet marketing space there are books about just about any subject like SEO, social media, you name it, that can be done in an hour a day.

Well, Nielsen has given us a look into the life of the Android device user and found that even the mobile habit is handled in an hour a day. The first reported finding shows that of that hour (it’s actually 56 minutes but we round up for link friendly reasons :-) ), 67% of that hour is spent with apps while the rest of the time is spent on the web. What constitutes web time is a question that would help us understand this a bit better but we’ll save that for later.

Google Brings Catalogs to iPad

I’m always amazed when Google does something in the mobile space that they produce for the iPad but not for Android devices. Do they do that because they want regulators to see that Android doesn’t get preferential treatment? Or is it that it’s a real pain to make sure your Android app works with the many iterations of Android that exists? Either way, it always strikes me as odd.

The latest way that Google is helping retailers utilize the tablet space is with the Google Catalog apps. It’s just like it sounds. Take a look for yourself.

The Google Mobile blog describes the apps capabilitities as follows: