Google Launches New Next-Gen Local Discovery Tool

Google’s new “tappable shortcuts” now make it possible to find key localized information without the need to use a search box for users in the United States of the Google app on Android, IOS and Google.com on the mobile web.

Google says search app users will need to have the most updated version of its app to have access to the shortcuts. Then, with a tap on a shortcut icon, located just below the search engine’s search boxes, they can find quick information about weather, sports, food, television programming and other entertainment. The data is grouped by interest, cuisines, atmosphere and various other attributes.

The search engine also said it will soon introduce new shortcuts for “big moments and events” that may be one-off shortcuts for things that attract a lot of search queries – like elections or the Olympics.

Driven and accompanied by rich data, Google’s new move provides a strong incentive for businesses to add more enhanced data as part of their local SEO strategy.

“The Google search box is great when you’re looking for a specific answer, but there are also moments when you just want to catch up on the latest for topics of interest,” writes Google’s Vice President of Product Manager, Tamar Yehoshua, on the Google Search Blog that announced the shortcuts.

He added that Android users will have access to even more shortcuts, including translation tools, nearby attractions, travel information, a currency converter, games and more. The blog also offers a short video that explains how the shortcuts work.

The new launch is likely Google’s bid to compete with Yelp and other such providers of local content, industry experts have said, as this sort of machine learning-driven activity entirely bypasses the traditional search box.

“These are essentially prepackaged queries, using a range of data behind the scenes, to replace typing with tapping,” writes Greg Sterling of industry publication Search Engine Land. “The experience represents a template for other kinds of mobile search results beyond the four categories currently present. Shopping and Travel come immediately to mind. Android features more shortcuts than iOS. Currently, you can buy movie tickets via the entertainment shortcut. We can expect more transactional capabilities like this to roll out to other categories.”

He added that, while there are no advertisements currently on Google’s shortcuts, he assumes there will be if the tools gain widespread usage – especially if we see large numbers of people entirely bypassing the search box in key categories.

“The changes also come at a time when the major technology companies are bringing back the idea of portals as a stepping off point to the web,” elaborated Sarah Perez from Techcrunch.com.  “In the internet’s early years, users would visit their favorite homepages for this sort of information — news, weather, local, sports, etc. Now, they’re being shuffled off into apps. Facebook, for example, has been trying to combat this shift, by steadily adding features that would have otherwise necessitated users to exit its own app for others — like weather, shopping, jobs and more.”

DAS Group is available to help your business make sure it’s on top of the latest digital marketing trends; we would be happy to share ideas with you.

Snapchat’s Ad Manager Gives Businesses of All Sizes Opportunities to Reach New Audiences

Reach New Audiences with Snapchat’s Ad Manager

With Snapchat’s announcement earlier this month that it is launching a self-service ad-buying system in June, small businesses now will have another digital option to reach their key audiences.

Called Snapchat Ad Manager, the initiative is Snapchat’s first effort to allow companies of all sizes to run campaigns and will be widely available in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Australia and other countries. Now, smaller businesses can buy the app’s vertical video ads to drive app installs, obtain branded long-form video views, and prompt ecommerce click-throughs.

Adweek reports that Snapchat is rolling out Snapchat Ad Manager with 20 brands, including smaller players like online sneaker seller Goat, social app Mammoth Media, movie ticket app Atom Tickets and gift retailer Hollar.

It’s no wonder that Snapchat is trying to garner a share of the growing digital ad market for smaller businesses. More than 3 million companies advertise their business story on Facebook, many of which are not large brands. Millions more advertise on Google, which is also known for its substantive results for small businesses. However, the market share of those two digital giants might be challenged soon as companies like Snapchat move into their territory.

Hot trends in digital advertising for smaller companies over the next few years include:

  • Mobile – According to data collected by Biznessapps, a mobile platform for small businesses, nearly half of small businesses are expected to adopt a mobile app by 2017 or later. In fact, within 2017, it is predicted that mobile advertising will finally surpass desktop advertising due to the explosive growth of mobile device users.
  • Video – This trend is closely related to mobile. Video viewership on mobile has surpassed desktop viewership since Q1 of 2015, according to Invodo. Considered an excellent way to reach the highly sought after millennial audience, sharing video on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube is a particularly effective way to tell a brand’s story.
  • Live Video – This trend is considered largely responsible for Snapchat’s skyrocket rise. Facebook has reported that users watched live videos three times longer than those that weren’t live.
  • Native – Spending on native advertising hit the $7.9 billion mark in 2016 and is expected to grow to $21 billion in 2018, according to Business Insider. It’s also expected to spread even further across digital platforms. This is a result of consumers’ increasing distaste for overt advertising. It is estimated that more than 400 million mobile web users and 200 million desktop web users are using ad-blocking technology to restrict banner ads displayed on their devices.
  • Interactive Content – As consumers are bombarded by an estimated average of 5,000 advertisements per day, one way to break through the noise and capture the attention of a distracted audience is to personalize the ad experience by making it interactive. This is considered especially effective when targeting very specific types of users.
  • Data Use – Major platforms like Facebook and Google provide key metrics and data to all of their advertisers. This is vital to determine the success or failure of a campaign as well as key in providing important insight into the minds of consumers. Ultimately, leveraging data to perfect and correct the content being pushed out is the way to get the most out of an advertising spend.

Smart business owners will pay close attention to new opportunities in digital advertising, like Snapchat’s Ad Manager, as well as to the industry trends in play that can help them grow their companies.

DAS Group, Inc. CEO Recognized as Top Women-Led Business Owner by The Commonwealth Institute

MIAMI, FL, May 18, 2017 – The Commonwealth Institute (TCI) honored 50 Top Women-Led Businesses from the state of Florida at a luncheon held today at Jungle Island. TCI is a non-profit organization whose mission is to advance businesswomen in leadership positions in Florida and Massachusetts; they partnered with Kaufman Rossin to administer and analyze the 2017 Women-Led Businesses Survey. The survey gathers information about women-led businesses in the state, identifying trends and common concerns.

TCI reports, “National data shows that women-owned businesses are strong and getting stronger.” According to the 2016 State of Women-Owned Businesses report commissioned by American Express Open, they have grown faster in number, employment and revenue than businesses as a whole since the Great Recession. Of the women surveyed, more than 58% reported their businesses grew in 2016 and 77.5% expect the same in 2017.

About Christina M. Parsons, CEO

CEO of DAS Group, Christina M. Parsons, was recognized today as one of the 50 Top Women-led Businesses; DAS Group was ranked 20th. Parsons and the other female business leaders that were recognized are CEOs, senior corporate executives, entrepreneurs, and more from a wide variety of industries. They have dedicated themselves to creating and growing successful businesses, organizations and careers.

Prior to working at DAS Group, Parsons was Director of Marketing & Electronic Media at Global Directories and Director of eStrategy at Saveology.com. A graduate of University of Miami, Bachelor of Business Administration (2003) and Florida International University, Master of Business Administration (2011), Parson’s hard work and dedication as a strategic and connected businesswoman has led her to this point in her career. Additionally, she is happily married and is the proud mother of four talented children.

About DAS Group, Inc.

Founded in 1980, DAS Group is a directional marketing company that specializes in lead generation utilizing interactive advertising, search engine marketing and local search engine placements, custom application, web development, and online yellow pages. We are a certified Google partner. DAS Group strives to bring customized solutions to our clients through unique lead generation and marketing efforts. We don’t believe in a “one size fits all” solution. Clients have different needs and objectives that allow us to utilize the many options at our disposal to help achieve measurable results.

Contact:
Mirian Rodriguez
Marketing Assistant
DAS Group, Inc.
(954) 893-8112
mirian@das-group.com
https://www.das-group.com/

How Pay-Per-Car Marketing May Change the Way You Do Business

Pay-Per-Car Marketing
What if you could offer customers who buy a certain amount of your products and services free transportation to your store or restaurant? Do you think that would give you an edge over your competition? Uber and Lyft are now testing programs like this to find out how they work for both merchants and consumers.

If the strategy does work, it could easily prove transformative in the local retail and restaurant business – and perhaps beyond. Industry experts predict it could even take the place of pay-per-click marketing at a local level, or at least provide an alternative to it for certain types of businesses.  This is because the conversion rates for these types of ads are predicted to be significantly higher than the more traditional pay-per-click approaches for local markets. Here’s why: once a customer selects a business’ ad and orders an Uber, backing out of a purchase will cost the customer money, as the ride is only validated with purchases.

Local businesses that pay for these rides will also be able to close the online-to-offline attribution gap as they will know precisely the source of these sales and when each sale was made.

So far, only a lesser version of pay-per-car rides are available and it is limited to the apps of Uber and Lyft and their partner affiliates. Uber Offers currently only includes the opportunity for customers to get from $5 to $20 off their next ride if they make purchases at partner stores such as Whole Foods or Dunkin Donuts in cities like Boston, New York, Dallas, Miami and San Francisco. Using Visa as the platform, customers select the offer and then use the Visa card associated with their Uber account to make the purchase at the store of their choice within the next few days.

But such programs are really expected to become ubiquitous when companies like Uber and Lyft make self-driving cars the norm. That’s because drivers for these companies currently take home 75% of the fare profit for each ride. Without drivers, ride service providers can significantly cut prices, making it much more affordable for businesses to pay customers’ fares to their locations. Tesla already plans to run such an autonomous ride service through its Tesla Network at some point in the near future.

If and when pay-per-car marketing takes off in self-driving cars, participating businesses will have further opportunities to sell to their passengers who are a captive audience during their journeys. This considered, you can expect to see interactive screens with advertisements in center consoles and on the back of headrests.

Want to be part of the first wave of pay-per-car participants? Here’s how to prepare:

  • Make sure your location data is accurate.
  • Make sure your inventory is ready.
  • Start now on a creative advertising plan that could reach customers in self-driving cars.

As ride services solidify their pay-per-car programs and find ways to occupy passengers’ idle moments – which they are likely to spend on their phone or using some device in the car – opportunities to market creatively and successfully in these venues will abound. There’s little doubt that you and your business will want to be part of those initiatives.

DAS Group Wins Silver Addy Award for Responsive Design

Venture X Website Wins Addy Award

Fort Lauderdale, FL, March 6, 2017 – DAS Group, Inc., a leading digital marketing and web development firm centrally located in Pembroke Pines, Florida, was recognized at the American Advertising Awards competition with a Silver ADDY Award in Responsive Design for Venture X. The AAF of Greater Fort Lauderdale & The Palm Beaches celebrated its ADDY Awards on the evening of Thursday, March 2nd to recognize those who have achieved creative excellence in advertising in the greater Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beaches area.

In addition to the extensive work done with Venture X throughout 2016, DAS Group, Inc. has continued to grow its relationships with United Franchise Group and their brands. Christina Parsons, President of DAS Group, Inc. says, “We are so pleased to have such a great group of clients that allow us to partner with them to push their digital presence further. In 2016, we had the opportunity to work on a lot of new web sites for our clients and we are proud to be recognized by the Greater Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beaches Advertising Federation for our work on VentureX.co.”

About DAS Group, Inc.

Established in 1980, DAS Group, Inc. is a digital marketing company that specializes in lead generation through the use of interactive advertising, search engine marketing and local search engine placements, custom application, web development, and online yellow pages. As a certified Google Partner, DAS Group uses Google’s best practices to assist clients with managing every detail of their online campaign and is always striving to stay on top of Google’s latest initiatives. DAS Group customizes efforts in creating solutions for each individual client based on their needs and their goals. This unique and personal approach to each client and campaign is the key in achieving measurable results through valuable visibility. DAS Group’s extensive experience and trusting relationships with businesses that have hundreds of locations nationwide and throughout the world has proven that effective communication with clients is critical to their long-term success.

About AAF of Greater Ft. Lauderdale & The Palm Beaches

The Advertising Federation of Greater Ft. Lauderdale was established in 1957. It is the local branch of the national group, the American Advertising Federation (AAF). The AAF is a not-for-profit industry association with 15 districts throughout the country. In 2016, the Greater Fort Lauderdale Advertising Federation teamed up with the Advertising Federation of The Palm Beaches to form AAF Greater Fort Lauderdale & The Palm Beaches. Serving the interests of those in the advertising community of the Greater Ft. Lauderdale and Palm Beaches areas, the group encourages those in their creative community to meet, coordinate, and engage in sharing ideas and best practices to foster learning and encourage local advertising and marketing students. Regularly scheduled events on relevant issues and topics of interest to the group are planned with this in mind.

About the ADDY Awards

The American Advertising Awards, sponsored annually by the American Advertising Federation, is the advertising industry’s largest and most representative competition. With over 40,000 entries in each year’s local AAF Club, the mission is to recognize and reward the creative spirit of excellence in the art of advertising. Local winners later compete against one another at the district level and then district winners compete on the national level. All creative dimensions of every entry are evaluated and scored by judges to determine those worthy of the coveted award. In each category, the Gold and Silver Addy recipients are seen as the top in their field.