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Hide and Seek: 30 Percent of Adults Use Social Location Tagging

Bonjour! I’m writing this post from a cafe near the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France. I can prove it:

Paris France
See. Twitter says I’m in Paris. And if you see it on the internet it must be true, right?

Come closer and I’ll let you in on a little secret. I’m not in Paris. I’m in Southern California but I found these interesting stats about social location tagging and decided to take the system for a test drive. Turns out you can put anything you want in that space and Twitter accepts it even though my IP address clearly shows where I am.

Waze Traffic Reports Integrated In Google Maps

waze_incidentThe maps wars drag on and Google is doing all that it can to hold off any true competitors (read: Apple Maps).

The latest update to Maps is the use of Waze traffic data to help users navigate their way around difficult traffic situations.

The Google LatLong / Maps blog tells us

Users of Google Maps for Mobile will now benefit from real time incident reports from Waze users. This means when Wazers report accidents, construction, road closures and more on Waze, the updates will also appear on the Google Maps app for Android and iOS in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, France, Germany, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Switzerland, UK and the US

Waze users are not required to move over to Google Maps to get that functionality either as new features come to Waze itself

Yelp Finally Enables Mobile Users to Post Reviews From Mobile App

YelpConfession time.

I don’t use Yelp. The main reason for this is that I am woefully uncool. It hurts to admit it, but there, it’s out in the open. (Of course those who actually know me are not falling out of their chairs with this ‘revelation’. They are just most likely scratching their heads at why I am admitting this in a post and chalking it up to ‘being Frank’). At any rate, I share that with you to frame the announcement by Yelp that users can now write posts directly in the mobile apps rather than waiting to get back to the desktop.

AOL’s Patch Trying to Mend Itself

We used to write about Patch from time to time in the past when it looked like there might be something to patch-logoall of the bluster that AOL’s CEO, Tim Armstrong, would generate around it. It looked like AOL had found the holy grail of the hyper local space (if you believed their hype that is) and the idea of true local reporting being both scalable and profitable was finally within reach.

Fast forward to the end of last week and the news reported by fellow AOL owned entity, TechCrunch, is not so good.

We reported yesterday that AOL’s hyper-local news service would lose hundreds of employees today, and now we have confirmation from a well-placed Patcher privy to the call that AOL CEO Tim Armstrong did indeed confirm to employees that hundreds would be laid off, with notifications of who will be let go coming throughout the coming week. (Disclosure: AOL owns TechCrunch).

Google Maps App Offers Up Local Ads to Consumers On-the-Go

If you have a restaurant, a service business or brick and mortar store, Google has a deal for you. Going forward, the Google Map app will show relevant ads at the bottom of the map when a consumer searches for a local biz.

google maps adsgoogle map ad expanded

When the consumer hits the map page, they’ll see a small ad at the bottom. It has the biz name, a short description and the mileage from your location. If you tap the ad, it expands to show additional information. In this case we see the hours, the full address, the website and then links to call, save and share.

Also note the tiny purple “Ad” icon next to the description. We wouldn’t want people to think this is the best result based on their search. This is just the best PAID result.

SMB’s and Google+ Still Not Connecting

BIA/Kelsey has released another Local Commerce Monitor report about SMB’s and their use of various pieces of the online marketing mosaic.

The findings are in the image below.

BIA Kelsey Local July 2013

The question I have is this. Why is Google+ still getting so little attention? I suspect SMB’s aren’t getting the message because it is becoming more and more well known that having a strong Google+ profile will help with search.

Of course, there are only 52% of SMB’s that have a Facebook Page as well, which seems much lower than other reports we have seen in the recent past.

Despite those numbers, 2/3 of those polled say they are either extremely or very engaged with customers on social media. Is Twitter the secret sauce for SMB’s?

Google Introduces New Zagat’s For Web and Mobile

Most thought that Google’s purchase of Zagat’s and the integration of their reviews in the Google Local offering would mean that the Zagat’s brand would be going away.

Well, most were wrong. Google released a new Zagat’s yesterday. A post on the Official Google blog tells us

We’re launching a new Zagat website and mobile app for Android and iPhone that puts the very best restaurants and nightspots right at your fingertips. And for the first time, our trusted Zagat ratings and reviews are available for free with no registration required.

The new Zagat features the latest news and video content from our expert local editors, curated lists (think “10 Hidden Restaurant Gardens Around DC”), powerful search and map-based browsing to help you find the local gems.

Here is a video as well.