Digital Recap: Google Continues O2O Marketing Emphasis

We’re collecting a host of links, videos, and assorted analysis on the ever-changing world of digital marketing. We invite you to skim, share, analyze, argue, and refute – just so long as you don’t get embarrassed at the water cooler again. Here are the latest digital marketing news and trends for the week of November 15, 2019.

Google Increases Focus on Online-to-Offline Marketing

Google announced a few new ad tools that will be available this holiday season.

Google Promoted Pins will allow businesses to prominently display their locations on Google Maps when Maps users tap on location pins. A promoted pin will display business locations when users search for directions.

Advertisers will now be able to upload local product feeds to ads in the Google Display network. These ads include store hours, a banner image, and a select set of products available at a nearby location.

Local inventory ads in Shopping campaigns are getting more specific, offering businesses the option to display if their products are available to “pick up today” at a local store after purchasing online.

Google’s continued emphasis on online-to-offline advertising also includes new goals within Local campaigns, including phone calls or directions. For more information on online-to-offline strategy, download our whitepaper, “Online-to-Offline Marketing: Tracking & Measuring Store Visits for Multi-Location Businesses“.

Instagram to Start Hiding Likes from Users in U.S.

Instagram chief Adam Mosseri announced last week that the popular social app will extend its test of hiding like counts to U.S. users. The test has created plenty of buzz among users and marketers, alike, with its wide-ranging implications.

The test, already underway in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan, and New Zealand, was designed to “depressurize Instagram, make it less of a competition, give people more space to focus on connecting with people that they love…,” said Mosserie.

While the test has noble intentions, it also comes with hesitation from marketers who worry it could decrease engagement. Andrew Hutchinson, a reporter for Social Media Today and an Instagram user in Australia, reports that the test is “not as extreme as some think”, noting that you can still view total likes on your own content.

Uber Eats to Introduce Restaurant Ads

A report from TechCrunch indicates that Uber Eats will soon be launching an ads business to the food delivery app. While Uber’s ride-sharing service is its primary source of revenue, a growing market for food delivery could offer a profitable side hustle for the company.

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi recently noted that Uber is “the number one and number two player in online food delivery category in multiple geographies, including the U.S., Japan, France, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand.”

Uber’s name recognition and global reach could potentially make it a ubiquitous home for restaurant advertising in much the same way Yelp has become synonymous with restaurant reviews. There’s a long way to go, obviously, but it’s worth monitoring any time a business with Uber’s cachet enters the fold.

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