Local On-Demand Economics: Conversational Intelligence will Supplant SEO


If search engine optimization is the primary marketing tool of the Web era, call analysis will be just one tool in the marketing optimization quiver for local conversations. A new category, Conversational Intelligence, will emerge to address the demands for deep personalization in online and physical sales engagements.

As the Local On-Demand Economy (LODE) evolves, more interaction between merchants, brands and customers will take place in rich media environments where the click is only one step, albeit still important, to improved customer engagement, satisfaction and conversion rates. We’ll be covering this emerging economy at BIA/Kelsey NOW in June (sign up today for the early-registration discount), but the topic is a hot one at our NATIONAL Conference this week.

“You’ve got so much information from just the click [on Google], but we have hundreds of keywords [in each call],” Jeremiah Wilson, founder and president of LogMyCalls, said in an on-stage conversation. That is an important insight that extends beyond marketers to political operatives and all breeds of persuasive messaging will need to embrace in the Local On-Demand Economy. It requires immense listening skills, algorithmic creativity and judicious use of insights to engage the person at the other end of a transaction.

The explosion of data in the enterprise during the last decade will be arriving in local markets through hosted services and resellers, such as media and marketing services companies. Search, which has dominated the past decade will continue to grow, but as we’ve heard repeatedly throughout the BIA/Kelsey NATIONAL Conference, there are many more steps to personalize the engagement with consumers.

The conversation, the basic unit of human communication (tweets, to provide contrast, are fragments of conversations), will be the new locus of analysis as the digital engagement model diversifies and lengthens the customer relationship to include pre-sales to post- and repeat-sales delivered to individual users. People think primarily in terms of their local context when

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Will Tesla’s Elon Musk Kill Uber? Thinking Demand-side Economics This Week

Leading up to the BIA/Kelsey NOW Conference, which will debut in San Francisco this June, we’re kicking off a regular series of blog postings on the Local On-Demand Economy (see our white paper). Twice per week, we’ll wrap notable news, fundings and executive moves in the LODE world.

(Click below for full stories)

Does Elon Musk’s Future Include a Place for Uber?
Uber may be the “greatest job creator” in the world right now, adding 50,000 drivers a month since the beginning of the year. But consider Tesla Founder & CEO Elon Musk’s vision of a world without drivers. In an interview at an NVIDIA conference this week, Musk said: “”In the distant future, I think people may outlaw driving cars because it’s too dangerous. You can’t have a person driving a two-ton death machine.” He predicts driving will eventually be illegal.

Bus rides, by contrast, may not be good LODE targets
Leap Transit launched its high-end bus service in San Francisco this week. A roughly 15-minute ride costs $6 and includes coffee, wi-fi and techie luxuries including an onboard concierge of sorts, according to this entertaining article from The Atlantic’s CityLab. This very unLODE model requires a steep capital investment in buses that appear to include reclaimed wood walls and Starbucks-like seating.

FundBox tackles the accounts receivable space
Accounts receivables delays cost small business significant lost opportunity the longer they drag on. If they can get paid faster, the revenue can be redeployed for growth, marketing and other purposes. FundBox, a San Francisco startup announced a $17.5 million round of financing from Khosla Ventures, Ron Conway’s SV Angel and other individual investors, to address this painful business problem.

Meanwhile, is syndication working magic for BuzzFeed?
At South by SouthWest in Austin, Texas, this week BuzzFeed founder Johan Peretti explained that he has effectively outsourced his site hosting to social networks where his company’s content is shared by users. While BuzzFeed.com attracts approximately 200 million users each month, its syndication network, which includes Facebook and Twitter, generates 18.5 billion impressions a month.

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2015 Mobile Predictions: The Director’s Cut

Like we do every year, BIA/Kelsey analysts huddle to formulate predictions for the coming year in respective areas of domain expertise.  Last month, we released a report that highlights picks across these coverage areas. For more color on the predictions that pertain…

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2015 Mobile Predictions: The Director's Cut

Like we do every year, BIA/Kelsey analysts huddle to formulate predictions for the coming year in respective areas of domain expertise.  Last month, we released a report that highlights picks across these coverage areas. For more color on the predictions that pertain…

Read More

What Will Be Apple Pay’s Local Killer App?

We've made no secret about bearish attitudes toward Apple Pay; owing mostly to user acclimation and POS implementation challenges. It requires network effect to gain the scale necessary for any two-sided marketplace to work. It's a classic local chicken &…

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What Will Be Apple Pay's Local Killer App?

We've made no secret about bearish attitudes toward Apple Pay; owing mostly to user acclimation and POS implementation challenges. It requires network effect to gain the scale necessary for any two-sided marketplace to work. It's a classic local chicken &…

Read More