Archive for the ‘Members’ Category

Rio SEO Highlights Importance of Business Listing Management for National Brands

Thursday, April 24, 2014

During Rio SEO’s webinar a few weeks ago, Bill Connard, VP of Local Search Solutions, discussed how multi-location businesses, especially national brands with thousands of locations, struggle to manage the accuracy and consistency of their local business information. This is a huge missed opportunity because using local listings to drive search traffic has proven to deliver the lowest cost per acquisition in the search industry to date.

Bill provided some examples and shared the processes used and the results seen by big brands that are managing their local business listings in bulk.  Here are the top three highlights from the webinar:

  • About 75% of consumers who generate directions via a search are going to the store to purchase or research a purchase.
  • Google, Bing and Yahoo account for 96.3% of US search traffic.
  • Claiming your listing on search engines is a good start, but listing optimization is what drives local SEO success.
  • 4 Steps to Maximize Local ROI with Listing Management: 1. Single environment to manage and collect local data; 2. Tackle the BIG local search directories first; 3. Syndicate local data to build links and enhance user experience; and 4. Measure Local SEO ROI through KPIs.
  • Ways to Optimize Local Data: 1. Name can include geo-modifier or service (i.e. Sports Authority San Diego); 2. Consistent address, local phone number; 3. Local business hours and specialty hours; 4. Local descriptions to include services offered (i.e. Sports Authority Sporting Goods); 5. Brand logo, storefront and product images; and 6. Social media links and additional local info.

Check out the entire presentation below:

For access to all of our past webinars and a look at what’s to come, visit http://bit.ly/LSAwebinars.

From 60 to 16: Announcing Our Ad to Action Awards Finalists

Monday, April 7, 2014

In order to support and encourage innovation in Last Mile Advertising, last December we launched the Ad to Action Awards, a competition designed to bring forward the most creative and effective new local advertising products that drive calls, clicks and store visits for local businesses.

By the end of our submission period in February, we had received 60 outstanding entries across our eight awards categories. Just last week, our judging panel – which included a diverse and notable group of industry experts, analysts, media and practitioners – completed their evaluation of these great innovations.

Today I’m pleased to announce our Ad to Action Awards finalists. The awards winners will be announced at our 2014 Local Search Association Conference in Huntington Beach, Calif. on April 28. Following the announcement ceremony, our awards winners will be treated to a private lunch with our featured speaker Steve Wozniak. In the weeks and months following, they will receive our industry’s support in successfully going-to-market.

So without further adieu, here are our finalists:

Business Listings  

  • Local Listing Manager™ by Rio SEO: “Rio SEO’s Local Listing Manager software is the only available solution that can deliver unlimited optimized local business data via bulk feed or API to all the major search engines and data aggregators, including Google+ Local, Yahoo Local, Bing Maps, Infogroup® Expressupdate, Neustar® Localeze®, Acxiom™, Factual™, Yext, Yelp, Facebook, FourSquare, TomTom, MapQuest, Niche Social Networks, and other online local data aggregators.”
  • TruPoint Synchronization Technology by Local Market Launch: “TruPoint Synchronization Technology is a scalable dashboard solution that enables a business to create, maintain and monitor digital presence across the local search ecosystem and includes complete digital syndication of enhanced data to the top data aggregators providing access to 400+ channels.”

Mobile

  • GeoCookie by Thinknear: “The GeoCookie focuses on identifying location context, categorizing location categories, and storing data in a usable format that can be accessed in real-time, which requires an incredible amount of scale and processing power.”
  • SmartFencing Technology by xAd: “SmartFence technology utilizes xAd’s proprietary 1st party search data, along with SmartLocation verified accurate mobile app inventory, to dynamically shift mobile ad impressions to the most relevant, real-time locations.”

Social Media

  • Likes for Lives by Search Influence: “The ‘Likes for Lives’ program is a Facebook fan building initiative that encourages targeted audiences to ‘like’ your Facebook page in exchange for a donation to a choice of non-profit organization benefiting breast cancer awareness/research.”
  • Support Local: “SupportLocal is applying the social graph to the oldest and greatest factor in making life’s daily decisions – word of mouth – by enabling people to give and get local business recommendations from the people they know and trust.”

Print

  • Platform Agnostic Dynamic Location Based Media Planning by SMG Local Spectrum: “SMG’s dynamic tool generates ranking reports that help determine the best directories to advertise in based on client’s KPI, new and existing locations, rural vs urban, budgets, proprietary zip code level data, and custom publisher negotiated discounts.”
  • Community Magazines by hibu: “This 32-page magazine (16 pages of local articles / 16 pages of ads) targets individual communities and provides hyper-local content and information specific to each market.”

Vertical Specific

  • Weather Triggered Demand Generation by SMG Local Spectrum: “This solution leverages real-time weather event triggers such as cold temperatures and natural disasters to serve relevant hyper-local messaging via online ad formats.”
  • Lead StreamTM by Marquette Group: “Lead StreamTM for Insurance offers three packages that cover a range of offers including listing management, social, online directories, reputation management, local paid search, microsites and display.”

Video

  • TargetView by Sightly: “Target View dynamically generates hundreds of scalable, affordable, localized video ads for all locations in a brand’s network, using clients’ existing creative or assets from our library and stock sources.”
  • StudioNow: “StudioNow is a global marketplace matching enterprises with video content creators through a powerful web-based platform that helps all types of businesses produce affordable, custom video that’s hyper-local, high quality and scaled to their needs.”

Deals/Loyalty/Ecommerce

  • MyTime: “The MyTime website or mobile app allows users to find a business, check availability, read reviews, and book appointments in seconds. With over 90 categories of services and 2 million businesses, MyTime is targeted to appointment-based businesses with fixed prices.”
  • Dynamic Hyper Local Leads Bundle by YP: “The hyper-local bundle was the first combined offering of the latest Mobile Advertising Targeting, Internet Yellow Pages with OLA Category Sponsorship targeting, with simple flat rate priced Print YP coverage, and advertising performance measurement for the industry.”

Implementation

  • AdMax® Local by The Search Agency: “AdMax® Local is a fully automated search engine marketing solution that enables small businesses to benefit from high quality and profitable local search campaigns by producing, managing and reporting on hyper-local, optimally structured, highly relevant and performance-focused SEM (AdWords, AdCenter) campaigns.”
  • Call Conversion Optimization™ by Kenshoo: “Through integrations with leading call tracking providers and a proprietary matching algorithm, Call Conversion Optimization™ is able to track calls at the paid search ad placement level and automatically adjust keyword bids to increase performance based on metrics like call length and quality.”

Interested in finding out who will win this year’s inaugural competition? Join us at LSA|14 in Huntington Beach, Calif., April 27-29, when we announce the winners. Register today!

Managing Local Listings to Drive ROI for National Brands

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Please join LSA and Rio SEO for an exclusive webinar presentation next Thursday, April 10 from 2 pm – 3 pm EST.

Multi-location businesses, especially national brands with thousands of locations, struggle to manage the accuracy and consistency of their local business information.  Yet, using local listings to drive search traffic has proven to deliver the lowest cost per acquisition in the search industry to date. During this webinar, Rio SEO will share the processes used and the results seen by big brands that are managing their local business listings in bulk.

Rio SEO Local Search powers store finder software, mobile store finder software, and local business listing management software. They offer Automated Local SEO services to multi-location businesses allowing them to optimize, distribute, and claim their local listings in Google, Yahoo, Bing, Infogroup® expressupdate, Neustar® Localeze®, Acxiom™, Factual™, Yext, Social Networks and other online local data aggregators. Based in San Diego, Rio SEO is among the largest independent providers of SaaS based, local SEO automation solutions and patented SEO reporting tools. Customers include brand marketers, retailers, and digital agencies. For more information about Rio SEO contact them at 858.876.3010 or visit them online at www.RioSEO.com.

Spots are limited so reserve your seat today!

LSA|14 Speaker Spotlight: George Leith, VP of Sales, VendAsta Technologies

Monday, March 24, 2014

George Leith, VP of Sales, VendAsta Technologies

Today’s Speaker Spotlight features George Leith, VP of sales at VendAsta Technologies.  George will be participating in an Idea Lab at the 2014 Local Search Association Conference in Huntington Beach, Calif., April 27-29, and we are really looking forward to the session.

Our Idea Lab sessions are designed to be intimate, smaller focus groups that dive into topics that are impacting the local advertising space.  George’s session, “4 Ways Reputation Management Drives Growth and Profitability,” will explore how reputation management is driving conversion rates, compressing call appointment times, reducing churn and leading to value-added bundling.

Laura Cole, VP of marketing at The Berry Company, and Collin Holmes, founder and CEO at Chatmeter, will also participate in the session.

We asked George to share a preview of the session, and here is what he had to say:

What are the key topics you’ll discuss during your session?
A business’ virtual doorway is more important than their actual doorway.  It is time for businesses to pivot their attention to what consumers see when there is a “knock” on the virtual doorway of any business.

What about your session are you most excited about?
I get very passionate about helping media companies deliver this VITAL service to SMB’s.  It is an education process for business people as well as a service.  We have an enormous opportunity to truly become consultants and help business people with one of the biggest issues facing them today, their online reputation.

Why is it important that attendees not miss your session?
There are lots of product people out there that do great presentations about digital products.  My presentation will not be about product, it will be about HOW TO SELL the deliverables of that product to an end business.  If you want to learn how to sell “online reputation management” to a business person, after this session you will have the roadmap.

Click here for more information and to register for the LSA|14 conference.

Sightly Discusses Shift from TV to Online Video and Outlines Local Impact

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

During Sightly’s webinar last week, CEO John McIntyre discussed the massive growth of the online video audience and the impact this is having on local advertising. Given the large portion of consumers that are now streaming online videos, McIntyre sees a tremendous opportunity to capture the attention of these consumers with local, targeted videos.  Here are some takeaways from the webinar:

  • Video isn’t just for big brands anymore.
  • Best practices for local video ads: create localized commercials, target specific audiences and reach every screen.
  • 190 million Americans watch online video each month.
  • Video ads reach 90% of internet users.
  • Localized and personalized video content creates a 200% boost in response rate.
  • Online video is around 50% more effective than TV when it comes to message and brand recall.
  • Internet users watch 35 billion video ads every month.

Check out the entire presentation below:

For access to all of our past webinars and a look at what’s to come, visit http://bit.ly/LSAwebinars.

Click-to-Call Programs Drive Value for Local Marketers

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

While the local advertising landscape is changing in new and significant ways, one thing that remains constant is the importance of customer phone calls to small businesses.

Last week, Telmetrics, the call measurement company, announced that it experienced more than 160% growth in 2013 in the number of digital local search call programs it monitored.  According to the company, marketers, advertising providers and ad networks increased the use of calls as a performance metric across mobile, desktop and vertical directory search ads.

Bill Dinan, president of Telmetrics, said, “The number of marketers adopting calls as a cross-media ad performance metric is growing significantly because digital marketers recognize the value of using call analytics as key engagement and conversion indicators.”

The growth seen at Telmetrics seems to be a simple case of supply meeting demand.  While there are now so many different ways that consumers can discover or find local businesses, phone calls remain the most desired result of those marketing campaigns.

A new study by BIA/Kelsey found that approximately 2 in 3 SMB respondents (66%) said they considered calls to be an excellent or good lead source – more than any other source. Online forms and in-person interaction were a close second and third, respectively.

As the local search and advertising space continues to fragment, we expect the solutions that drive consumer actions—specifically calls—will capture an increasing amount of ad dollars.  Even though the way we advertise locally continues change, the objective for local businesses remains focused on driving consumer action and interaction with them. Calls, store visits, appointments, reservations and clicks are all strong leads to making a sale.

The importance of these consumer actions is why we started our Ad to Action competition this year.  The competition is now officially closed to further entries and the judging is underway.  We are excited to explore all of the the marketing tools that are driving consumer action and will announce the winners at our LSA|14 conference.

Local Targeted Video: The Biggest Opportunity and Threat Since Digital

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Please join LSA and Sightly for an exclusive webinar presentation next Thursday, March 13 from 2 pm – 3 pm EST.

What are the local implications of the massive growth of the online video audience? The paradigm shift from TV to online video is very similar to the shift from print to digital. A large portion of the audience has already moved but advertisers and agencies have been slow to respond. In this webinar, Sightly will discuss how local marketers can avoid being left behind by leveraging this shift for new revenue streams.

Sightly is a local video advertising platform that reaches target audiences where they live, work and buy on every screen they use—laptops, tablets, smartphones and connected TVs. They work to connect companies and their customers in the most engaging and cost effective way through end-to-end local video advertising technology. With dynamic ad personalization and programmatic media buying technology, advertisers and their agencies are able to create and deliver tailored, relevant, precisely targeted messages to viewers online in each of their markets.

Spots are limited so reserve your seat today!

Top 5 Local Ad Stats of the Week: Websites

Friday, February 28, 2014

This week we focus on the importance of small business websites when it comes to attracting local consumers.  Studies consistently show that many SMBs don’t have a website, and those that do struggle with related activities including SEO, mobile optimization and formatting.

Here are some compelling stats that help put into perspective how websites are critical to any small business’ local strategy:

  • 2 in 3 American and Canadian consumers indicate that a local business having a website affects their opinion of the business and whether or not to use it. (BrightLocal)
  • 45% of US and UK SMBs said they don’t have a website, and in both cases only 6% of respondents with websites said they were mobile-optimized. (hibu)
  • 59% of consumers visit a business’ website when conducting a mobile search. (Google/Nielsen)
  • 40% of SMBs said they are going to increase their budgets for websites by 10-15% within the next 12 months. (Thrive Analytics)
  • More than 90% of SMB websites audited didn’t display a contact email address, and nearly half lacked a phone number on their homepage.  (vSplash)

Be sure to check back next week for our next edition of Top 5 Local Ad Stats of the Week. Have a great weekend!

JiWire Highlights Importance of Targeting Beyond Location on Mobile

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

During their webinar last week, JiWire explored the ways in which advertisers are finding success by targeting custom audience segments at exact moments in their lives.  They shared some case studies that showed how using various pieces of consumer information in addition to location can make mobile brand messages more relevant.

Check out their entire presentation below:

For access to all of our past webinars and a look at what’s to come, visit http://bit.ly/LSAwebinars.

Top 5 Local Ad Stats of the Week: Mobile

Friday, February 14, 2014

Today we’re excited to launch a new weekly series in which we’ll highlight five compelling pieces of data and research about the fast-changing local advertising and marketing space.

This inaugural week we focus on mobile, where we’re seeing growing consumer usage and engagement when it comes to local activity and actions.

Here are just a few of the compelling stats that help put into perspective how consumers today are navigating local via their mobile devices:

  • The most popular post-click activity of 2013 was click-to-call. (xAd)
  • 77% of mobile searches occur at home or at work, while 17% take place on-the-go. (Google)
  • 81% of smartphone users rely on their mobile device for local shopping information. (Local Search Association/comScore)
  • 92% of consumers searching on mobile devices prefer browser search compatibility over mobile app availability. (DAC Group/Kantar)
  • $12 billion is the current value of U.S. online mobile sales to SMBs. (hibu)

Be sure to check back next week for our next edition of Top 5 Local Ad Stats of the Week. Have a great weekend!