Daily News: Google’s ‘CallJoy’ Virtual Agent, SMB Ad Spend, Facebook Messenger’s New Features

Here is today’s roundup of news related to local marketing and advertising, local media, technology, local commerce, consumer behavior and more.

What Google’s ‘CallJoy’ Virtual Agent Says about Where the Market Is Going (May 1, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Earlier today Google’s Area 120 products group announced CallJoy, a virtual agent SaaS offering ($39 per month) that will answer calls, filter spam (including inside sales) and help consumers accomplish their desired goals (store hours, food ordering, booking). If it works, many SMBs will gladly buy it.”

Study: Majority of SMBs Will Increase Ad Spend This Year (May 1, 2019)
LSA Insider: “A report released in February of this year revealed that a large percentage (87%) of small businesses advertise in some form or another. It would appear that more SMBs are beginning to recognize the value (and perhaps see the positive results) that such advertising investment can provide, as a recent survey of 529 SMBs by The Manifest revealed that 91% plan to increase their ad spend this year.”

Facebook Messenger to get new lead gen templates, appointment booking (May 1, 2019)
Marketing Land: “Messenger is rolling out two new features for businesses: lead generation templates and an appointment booking interface that will integrate with calendar platforms. The new tools were launched during Facebook’s F8 Developers Conference that kicked-off on Tuesday.”

What Brand Information Sources Do People Trust the Most? (May 1, 2019)
Marketing Charts: “Just one-third (33%) of consumers who rely on advertising for brand information say they trust its messaging, making it the least credible source of information among the options given, according to a recent report by Kantar Media.”

Voice Marketing Starts with Smart SEO (April 30, 2019)
Street Fight: “Voice search is a hot topic in the search marketing world—and with good reason. Nearly 70 million American adults own one or more smart speakers, an install base that grew 40% in 2018.”

How Social Media Users Have—and Have Not—Responded to Privacy Concerns (April 29, 2019)
eMarketer: “The Facebook Cambridge Analytica revelations changed the way people in the US think about online privacy. And it should come as no surprise that many have grown wary over the mishandling of personal information.”

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