Tag: Yelp

Social media marketing app, Yelp, lets businesses respond to rants and kudos

The latest upgrades to this application make it possible for merchants to tell their side of the story.

The social media marketing app from Yelp has now launched a new version of its application called Yelp for Business Owners, which makes it possible for merchants to be able to more effectively monitor their pages over the service, as well as to reply to the praise and concerns that are posted by their customers.

Many people are actually surprised that this feature didn’t already exist within the mobile app.

Though the consensus appears to be that it is a great idea to use this social media marketing, advertising, and reviewing site and app to be able to give businesses the chance to respond to what customers have said about their products, services, and location, many are also shocked that the option wasn’t already available. This suggests that this move by Yelp isn’t quite as revolutionary as it is simply about time that they did it.

The new social media marketing app for businesses is available for both Android and iOS based devices.

apps - social media marketingThe announcement of the availability of the mobile app was made on the company’s official blog. The release follows closely on the heels of another that had revealed that the service would be allowing anyone to be able to use the Yelp platform in order to communicate directly with a business through its profile, there.

According to Yelp, “Since launching in June of 2014, consumers are now sending an average of 55,000 messages each month to businesses through our free Message the Business tool.” The company also went on to say that mobile represents over 64 percent of the searches that are made over the platform. Moreover, it pointed out that every month, there are about 73 million unique visitors that use the service over their smartphones and tablets, as of the third quarter of this year.

The social media marketing, reference, and reviewing service shared that “it’s clear there’s a demand to conduct these conversations on the go.” This is becoming the case with an increasing number of services that provide consumers with business locations, details, and reviews.

Mobile game company pays fine for violating the COPPA

TinyCo has settled with the Federal Trade Commission.

The San Francisco-based mobile game developer officially apologized and settled with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) last week, for engaging in improper marketing toward children, which violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).

The size of the fine TinyCo paid for its violation was $300,000.

According to the FTC, the mobile gaming developer known for popular titles such as Tiny Village, Tiny Zoo and Tiny monsters, was marketing its games to children under the age of 13. The company was also collecting the personal identification of kids. Both of these activities are prohibited under the protection law.

According to the feds, children that played TinyCo games accumulated virtual goods, in-game currencies that allowed them to move up game levels. TinyCo permitted this to occur while it collected personal identifiers (Pls) from children 13 and younger. The company claims that the mistake was an infraction with its social identity system and also stated that it fully supports the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act and the Federal Trade Commission’s effort to protect the data and privacy of kids online.

COPPA has been in effect since 2000 and the law requires online websites and services to obtain parental consent before they can collect any personal data, which includes information such as names, locations and email addresses, from users who are 13 and under.Mobile game company pays fine

The mobile game developer was not the only company hit with a fine.

Yelp, an online review site, was also fined by the FTC and settled charges, paying its $450,000 fine. It violated the COPPA by collecting information from users that registered and stated they were 13 or younger. Both Yelp and TinyCo have been required to delete all information that was collected from these children.

The director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, Jessica Rich, said that “As people — especially children — move more of their lives onto mobile devices, it’s important that they have the same consumer protections when they’re using an app that they have when they’re on a Web site.” Rich added that as companies develop and test their apps, they should make certain “that children’s information won’t be collected without a parent’s consent.”

With TinyCo having paid its fine, it is clear that the FTC was not bluffing when it promised to begin enforcing COPPA, especially in regard to mobile games.