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We’re putting Italian businesses on the map

Yext partners Italiaonline

Yext has partnered with Italiaonline, the country’s largest digital media company. The partnership will bring Yext’s powerful technology to Italian businesses via IOL Connect, Italiaonline’s new service, which allows businesses to manage their location data online. By joining forces with Yext, Italiaonline will help businesses improve their searchability on any of the 100+ maps, apps, search engines and directories in Yext’s PowerListings Network — including Google and Facebook.

“Together with our partner Italiaonline, we’re excited to put hundreds of thousands of Italian small businesses on the map,” said Howard Lerman, CEO of Yext. “Using the Yext Location Cloud, they will be able to manage their location data online easily and in real time, reaching more customers and driving more visits.”

The partnership between Yext and Italiaonline comes at a critical moment in Italy, as mobile search continues to gain dominance throughout the world, and as the country’s ever-growing Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) community increasingly demands a one-stop-shop for making real-time location data updates.

“IOL Connect is an integrated digital location system that, thanks to the partnership with Yext, we are proud to launch exclusively for the Italian market,” said Antonio Converti, CEO of Italiaonline. ”Being found on the web is essential, especially for local businesses. We now have a powerful tool — together with our sales network and local ties — including over a thousand agents and a hundred media consultants specialising in digital marketing.”

Yext is expanding its European integrations and network rapidly, partnering with leading digital platforms and directory services throughout the continent. This latest expansion comes on the heels of several new product launches, including the Healthcare Location Cloud in the US, as well as a partnership with Snapchat to make sponsored Geofilters easy.

Avanti tutta!

For more information, check out Italiaonline’s press release.

Delivering Important Information in a Moment of Crisis: How Will Your Brand Respond?

Delivering emergency information

It’s hard to be prepared for moments like the one we are facing right now. Fear about the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus is abundant, and the actions of individuals and businesses in response to that fear have ranged from nonchalant and dismissive, to all-out panic — which has led to the spread of disinformation. Acting quickly, thoughtfully, and in a well-informed manner has never been more important. 

Here’s the reality about how people process moments like these — despite our best efforts, humans are generally not the best at multitasking. That’s not an insult, it’s just science. Even when we think we’re multitasking, what we’re actually doing is switching very quickly between tasks while still using linear processing for each one. It’s something of an evolutionary win for us over other species. It’s why today’s machine learning is trying to emulate the neural network that forms the human brain. Turns out we’re really very powerful processing machines.

That is, we are until there is a crisis.

In the book The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes — and Why, author Amanda Ripley interviews survivors of a variety of disasters, including car crashes, train wrecks, airplane crashes, and even people who survived 9/11. What becomes clear through their stories is our remarkable ability to survive, and how survival often comes down to how we process information in the moment. In times of stress, our brain systematically reduces input from some senses in order to give maximum resources to the senses exclusively needed to survive.

This prioritisation is mirrored in our everyday lives. When one thing feels vital to us, other things are quickly forgotten, ignored, and overlooked. We focus tightly on a solution to a problem, and only information that supports that effort gets processed.

Today we find ourselves at a crossroads. This is likely one of the most defining moments in a generation as a global pandemic has almost our entire planet focused on a single topic. We are still all living our lives. But many are distracted with that voice in our heads reminding us to take precautions, ask questions, seek answers before doing things that were once a normal part of our lives. Like booking a flight, or a hotel room. Like going to a store to try on clothes. Like dining in a restaurant.

It is paramount right now that people be able to get accurate answers to their questions about the coronavirus, and every part of our personal and collective lives being affected by it. There are questions about our immediate health and wellbeing, of course, but as the days pass, the question sphere expands to encompass so many other parts of our lives. Does the grocery store have what I need? Will I lose my job? Are we going into a recession? How long will we have to do social distancing? When will there be a vaccine? What kind of job relief is available to people who are out of work because of COVID-19? 

This crisis, like so many others, brings up many questions about the crisis itself and about the broader state of security and functionality for our own lives and futures. 

Part of that questioning includes the businesses in our communities and online. Given the obvious and immediate changes we’ve seen with businesses closing for an extended period of time, now is the critical moment for you to help people understand what your business is doing.

So now it’s on you. Is your brand ready to respond?

Numerous companies have detailed the efforts they are taking to protect their customers and their staff during this time. Some are going so far as to close their retail outlets for weeks in the future. Sending out press releases may be part of communicating this plan, but making sure customers are actually getting these messages is just — if not more — important.

Right now, you cannot overshare information on your plans and preparations in dealing with this crisis and what the public needs to know about it — but you can easily under-communicate, thus risking a permanent fracture in your customers’ trust in your business. Clearly, this is a time for accurate information, not marketing pitches. That said, all those marketing channels can be put to use sharing relevant information.

If you don’t deliver detailed, timely, and relevant answers to customer questions, you’ll be underserving your customers at a moment when, frankly, they have enough stress in their lives.  Communicating basic business details such as changes in your hours of operation, or closures, or changes to delivery policies positions your company to be at least one thing that works in a world that currently feels chaotic and devoid of clear answers.

Re-evaluating where development resources should be applied isn’t an easy task. And advocating for a new project to take precedent over established plans is risky, both to a company and the individual suggesting it. However, you do not want to be the company that’s seen as remaining disconnected from the realities your customers are feeling, so bear that in mind as you consider where to spend for the biggest overall positive impact during this time.

Addressing the “how” around deploying the right answers for your website visitors is a complex project, though. This is where we come in. The No Wrong Answers website is your starting point for free access to the machine-learning-based Answers platform we’ve built. 

Wrong answers are costly for businesses every day, but moments like this remind us that they can have a real tangible impact on people’s lives. Whether you opt to use our system, or move in your own direction, it’s imperative you focus on communicating all of the most useful information to your customers in places they will actually see it. Now is the time for accurate answers everywhere.

Click here to learn more about delivering answers everywhere with our current free Yext Answers offer.

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Yext Announces Collaboration with State of New Jersey to Launch Comprehensive COVID-19 Information Hub

Yext, Inc. (NYSE: YEXT), the Search Experience Cloud company, today announced its collaboration with the State of New Jersey to deliver residents accurate, up-to-date information about COVID-19 with a new online information hub.

The State of NJ’s new website, covid19.nj.gov, uses natural language processing (NLP) to understand the questions people ask about the coronavirus, then delivers answers using data collected from multiple NJ state agencies, federal resources like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Federation of American Scientists “Ask a Scientist” interactive tool.

“Getting the right information out to people can help save lives,” said Howard Lerman, Founder and CEO of Yext, “The State of New Jersey is providing a critical service to its residents, and we’re committed to supporting them with Answers and our resources during this unprecedented time.”

“Access to accurate and timely information is critical in combating the COVID-19 pandemic,” said New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. “I want to thank Yext for stepping up at this crucial moment and donating services and assistance that are further enabling us to provide our residents with vital information from numerous sources seamlessly and in a centralised location.”

“Over the last few weeks, we’ve been able to use our platform for good, and our collaboration with the State of New Jersey highlights how Yext can help any local, state or federal government agency in a moment of crisis,” said Brian Distelburger, Co-Founder and President of Yext. “In just a few days we were able to implement Yext Answers on the State’s new information hub, and together we now help give New Jersey residents the information they need to make important, potentially life-saving decisions about their health.”

As part of Yext’s commitment to helping government agencies and businesses provide verified information during the COVID-19 pandemic, the company is offering its Yext Answers product for free for 90 days. The trial includes Yext’s COVID-19 Knowledge Graph plug-in, which adds Frequently Asked Questions about coronavirus sourced directly from the CDC to a website’s search experience.

Learn more about the Yext Answers trial at www.nowronganswers.com.

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