Can AI help your business, WordStream acquired by Gannett for $150M, Facebook Teases Ad-Free Subscriptions 

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Search marketing software company WordStream acquired by Gannett for $150M (

Topics: chief executive officer, Gannett Company, Gannett, Sigma Partners, digital transformation, local markets, earnout, tremendous value

  • In August of 2008, the company was able to secure a $4 million Series A investment from
    Sigma Partners
    , and in 2010, it secured a $6M Series B investment led by
    Egan Managed Partners
  • “This acquisition marks another
    critical milestone
    digital transformation
    , enhancing our ability to support businesses and agencies in our
    local markets
    with the intelligent, data-driven marketing solutions they need to drive growth,” said
    Robert Dickey
    , president and
    chief executive officer
    of Gannett.

Digital Marketing News: Facebook Teases Ad-Free Subscriptions, Google Tests SERP Questions, & Online Ad Spend Jumps (

Topics: Techcrunch, Snapchat, Augmented Reality, digital marketing, Google, mobile search, search results, Microsoft

  • Google has recently tested
    question forms
    search results
    that allow users to submit questions directly by text or voice to the
    Internet giant
    and its various publisher partners.
  • Digital advertising totals could surpass spending on all other media types by 2020 or 2021, according to
    new report data
    from eMarketer, rising from this year’s predicted 43.5 percent to 49.9 percent in 2020 and 52.1 percent in 2021. eMarketer
  • We hope you’ll join us again next week, when we’ll share a new batch of the latest marketing news, and in the meantime you can follow us at @toprank on Twitter for even more timely
    daily news

Direct Marketing’s Relevance in a Digital World (

Topics: online marketing, Direct marketing, digital marketing, brand awareness, direct mail, marketing strategy, online presence, digital space

  • Direct marketing, mail marketing, tangible marketing – all terms that seem to have no place among the
    Google AdWords
    of the world.
  • Further, to increase the experience, the piece of
    direct mail
    will have a
    call to action
    for the consumer to explore online, inviting the consumer to interact with the brand once again in the
    digital space

Consumers kill for digital convenience: Can AI help your business? (

Topics: customer experience, onboarding, customer support, computer systems, based systems, proactive, wireless carriers, plug and play

  • The new battleground for CX in business is
    digital convenience
    , and those that use AI and automation technologies judiciously to provide seamless, one-to-one
    omni-channel experiences
    will prevail.
  • “Brands that help consumers simplify the
    purchase journey
    have customers who are 86 percent more likely to purchase their products and 115 percent more likely to recommend their brand to others.”
  • If we agree that AI is a mixture of automation and
    intelligence technologies
    , AI can help streamline the process for consumers getting answers such as the status of an order, return, or claim.
  • First the bad news – there is no one
    right answer
    , and with thousands of vendors (6,829 in this marketing landscape), open-source packages, and resulting combinations of
    solution stacks
    possible, there’s no evidence anyone has found the
    absolute best combination
    , or ever will.
  • Dry run how each will navigate your services: some will be older and less familiar with technology; some will be capable of juggling five devices on five channels; sometimes technology will fail and require