Posts Tagged ‘local media’

SoMoConf to Provide Local Media with Latest on Social and Mobile Opportunities

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

As digital advertising spend continues to chip away at traditional media spend, many local media organizations are looking for new sources of revenue and ways to serve their clients. Social and mobile solutions provide these organizations with a variety of new opportunities to expand their product line and help SMBs attract new customers.

We are excited to partner with Borrell Associates and the Local Media Association for the upcoming “Social + Mobile: Show Me the Money!” conference, taking place August 20th-21st in Chicago.

At this year’s event, we’ll hear from the heaviest hitters in social and mobile, digital agencies and clients on the best ways to make money from these platforms.  The event also promises superb networking by bringing together professionals from three leading local media organizations, along with a variety of receptions and other ways to get to know one another.

Notable speakers will include:

  • Ted Zagat, Ads, Facebook
  • Lutz Finger, Director Data Science & Data Engineering, LinkedIn
  • Joel Meek, Head of Partner Online Sales & Operations, Pinterest
  • PJ MacGregor, Brand Development Lead, Instagram
  • Greg Stuart, Global CEO, Mobile Marketing Association
  • Luke Edson, VP of National Markets, YP
  • And many more…

So if you work for a local media organization and you want to learn what your colleagues are doing to grow digital revenues, SoMoConf is for you. You’re bound to make some new connections and leave with fresh ideas on how to drive sales.  Click here to learn more.

LSA Member Innovation in Local: Simpli.fi

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Today, we are excited to introduce a new weekly column, “LSA Member Innovation in Local,” that will highlight the ways our member companies are contributing to the next generation of local advertising and marketing. With our more than 300 members in 30+ countries, we look forward to profiling the innovative and forward-thinking solutions our member companies are bringing to market.

For our first column, we hear from Simpli.fi, a programmatic marketing platform for local media. Simpli.fi enables local media publishers and networks to go beyond reselling generic audience targeting solutions and begin innovating by creating proprietary products that cannot be replicated by their competitors.

We caught up with Donny Dye, VP of strategic partnerships at Simpli.fi, to learn more about his company and what they are working on:

What local problem(s) does Simpli.fi solve? How?
Until Simpli.fi, the efficiency and effectiveness of programmatic media buying was unavailable to local advertisers who typically have small budgets and hyper-targeted audiences. Unlike other programmatic marketing platforms that rely on pre-packaged audience segments, Simpli.fi uses unstructured data which allows us to build custom, fluid audiences that meet the specific needs of the local advertiser as well as automate the optimization of high volumes of small campaigns.

What makes Simpli.fi innovative?
We understand the unique needs of the local media reseller.  For many of the local media properties we work with, it’s really just a matter of introducing a superior solution for audience targeting, partnering with revenue owners to create unique products for their markets and then training and supporting the field sales teams. While our technology is programmatic, our approach is personal–that’s what really has made us an innovative player in this space.

How does Simpli.fi make the local space better for advertisers and/or consumers?
Simpli.fi understands that your core products are the foundation of your property’s success. Our solutions complement those products–print, television, radio, OOH, direct mail or digital–to increase the revenue they bring to your organization, instead of cannibalizing that revenue. We respect the power of local advertising and the long-standing relationships our clients have with their advertisers. We’re supporting those relationships by creating even more shared value.

What is next in local?
We’re excited about last mile advertising–those campaigns that drive actions that translate into real-world business success for a local businesses. We recently integrated mobile and video real-time bidding exchanges into our already robust display RTB ecosystem. When we combine that with our ability to do hyperlocal geotargeting and instant recency targeting we can really help the local advertiser swing the doors, turn the tables and ring the register.

To learn more check out the deck below and if you have any questions can contact Donny at Donny@simpli.fi.

Simpli.fi: Visibile Data Visible Success from Local Search Association

LSA|14: Emerging Start-Up Tech in Local Media

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Google Head of Business Development, Channel Sales, North America Jon Sofield led an afternoon panel about emerging start-up technology in local media.  Members of the panel included William Hsu, Mucker Capital; Farbod Shoraka, BloomNation; Amit Jain, Bridg; and Jim Johnson, ServiceTitan.

The panel discussed how big data is impacting the local space.  Hsu said that the investment in big data started about three or four years ago, indicating that the market is probably about halfway through its investment period.  He said that as investment slows down, companies will look more at how they can put that data to action.

Jain agreed that putting the data into action is what brings value to a business.

“It’s real time, a lot of data.  You’re tracking every single activity every single minute.  You’re tracking that data and trying to figure out behavior changes.  So it’s becoming a way to learn in real-time and react on a real-time basis.”

“The reality today is you can process a lot of data in real time and really take actions on it … That’s what creates value.  Technology allows you to process lots and lots of data, and that wasn’t possible yesterday.  What real-time big data is doing already to our lives is making the consumer experience so much different than it used to be.”

So how do startup local search providers help in this complex environment?  Shoraka says it’s all about transparency.

“We came in strongly that we’re fully transparent in what we’re going to do.  Sharing consumer information … it immediately created that form of trust.”

Before closing the panel, Sofield asked which companies will lead in local technology in the future:

  • Hsu: Google
  • Farbod: Amazon
  • Jain: Square, Paypal, Apple
  • Johnson: Google

SoMoConf: Borrell Provides List of Data Sources to Help Local Media Improve Ad Sales

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Larry Shaw, VP of research at Borrell Associates, gave a great presentation highlighting all of the free data sources out there that provide detailed audience analysis.  Some of these sources even provide information on specific local markets which can help with targeting but also with ad sales.  Some of the sources he highlighted include:

  • Borrell
  • BIA/Kelsey
  • Kantar
  • US Census
  • Nielsen
  • eMarketer
  • Millenial Media
  • Pew

In addition, Larry provided insight into what kind of information local media organizations need to bring to sales presentations.  Most importantly, Larry said that knowing the latest trends and behaviors is critical which is where the resources mention earlier can come into play.  In addition, knowing your media organizations reach, in other words, “how much of the pie you have,” is important for helping sell your ad solution.

Finally, he gave some insight into the trends Borrell is seeing in regards to ad spend across many sources and also some projections on ad spend and usage over the next few years:

  • Most ad spend is remaining relatively flat except online advertising has seen a huge jump because of targeted advertising.
  • Targeted ad spend is expected to double next year.
  • Promotions are growing rapidly and they are now bigger than online advertising but not nearly as big as online marketing services
  • Mobile (smartphone and tablets) will quickly overtake desktop usage in the next few years
  • Social ads will double in next 5 years

See you at the First Ever SoMoConf!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Over the next few days, local media leaders will be arriving in Chicago for our first ever Social + Mobile: Show Me the Money! conference.  In partnership with Borrell Associates and the Local Media Association, we have assembled some great speakers from the leaders in social and mobile like Facebook, YP, xAd, Google, comScore and many more.  We’re definitely looking forward to learning, sharing and networking in the windy city!

Many have made the decision to join us for what is going to be a great conference focused on monetizing the many tools found in the social and mobile space.  We are looking forward to seeing the latest best practices, research, analysis, case studies, strategies and trends that are helping companies make more money with these tools.

If you’re charged with growing social and/or mobile revenues at your local media organization, then you don’t want to miss this conference.  We’ll be live blogging throughout the conference here at Local Search Insider and live tweeting via @LocalSearchAssn using hashtag #SoMoConf. Be sure to follow us and join in on the conversation. See you in Chicago!

Find Out What a Text Message is Worth at SoMoConf

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Gordon Borrell, CEO of Borrell Associates, returns to blog on the Local Search Insider.  He is ranked in the top 2% among Gerson Lehrman Group’s 150,000 consultants worldwide and is quoted frequently in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Ad Age, Forbes and other publications. He has appeared on CNN and other TV and radio programs discussing trends and forecasts for local media.

Dick Larkin has discovered a magical number for text messaging, and it is $5.71.

Larkin started in 2011 with a simple plan to sell text-messaging to SMBs.  Two years later, CloseBy Text Marketing has raked in $4 million and given his yellow pages company invaluable information on how to make mobile work for smaller businesses.  Eventually, he discovered the magical $5.71.  More on that in a minute.

Larkin is executive vice president of sales for American Marketing & Publishing, which publishes 513 community directories branded as HomePages, mostly in the Midwest.  He’s one of the most knowledgeable sales professionals when it comes to SMBs. He’s one of about two dozen speakers who will evaporate the hype and describe what works at the ground level – and what doesn’t – during the Social + Mobile: Show Me the Money! conference Aug. 21-22 in Chicago.  (I’ll be attending this conference, one of the better ones I’ve seen this year on the social and mobile opportunity. Check out the agenda.)

Back to Dick Larkin.  He said the $4 million came as the result of a “hard stance” to actually sell a low-price/high-interest program to SMBs instead of making it value-added in a print contract.  The determination to put a price on text messaging may seem perfectly logical, but the brain of a typical print or broadcast sales manager doesn’t usually work that way.  The manager is more apt to either ignore the product (“it’s too cheap for my reps to bother with”) or would throw it in as value-added to make the print contract more attractive.  Instead, the directory reps sold it for $995.  An easy add-on.

Larkin said AMP began learning “an enormous amount … on what messages work.”   There’s a price point (below $20) that “will have vastly better return” for the SMB.  And they found that there’s a very small window of opportunity with recipients:  within 30 minutes of when you want them to purchase something.

“Text is very, very transactionally driven,” Larkin said.  “The easier it is to make a small purchase, within a short time frame of when you want the customer to take action, the better.  The text message is going to be read within 3 minutes of sending, so the content better pack a punch.”

So now for that magical number.  What AMP discovered after sending 20 million messages was that, on average, SMBs participating in the program make $5.71 in sales from each subscriber per text message sent.   In other words, a merchant with 100 subscribers will generate $571 on average every time they send a broadcast text message.

I don’t think I need to write anymore, and I do think Larkin’s session will be very well attended indeed.

Local Businesses Benefit from Including Yellow Pages in Local Strategy

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

As I indicated in my previous post, today we are releasing the 2012 results from our annual “Local Media Tracking Study,” conducted by Burke, Inc., which provides key insights into the reach of various local media sources. In this second of two blog posts – my first post discussed results related to local mobile usage and overall local media trends – I highlight the study’s results on Yellow Pages usage.

The study found that a majority of U.S. adults rely on Yellow Pages offerings to find nearby products and services, generating a strong volume of quality leads for local businesses and extending the reach of both online and offline local advertising. Additionally, in every category of local media measured, adding Yellow Pages advertising resulted in material gains to reaching local consumers.

(Click here to view and/or download PDF version of infographic.)

I believe these results speak loud and clear that Yellow Pages should remain an integral component of local businesses’ online and offline media strategy. Here’s why:

  • While the number of advertising channels has grown, print and Internet Yellow Pages are among the top media sources reaching consumers searching for local businesses. Both the combined reach and number of references for print and Internet Yellow Pages offerings demonstrate the combined offering remains one of the most visible in the local space.
  • Yellow Pages deliver quality leads – consumers who are ready to contact a business and make a purchase, often within the same days as their search. Approximately 75% of Yellow Pages searches resulted in a purchase or intent to purchase. The Burke study results have been consistently strong in this area over the past three years.
  • Print and Internet Yellow Pages are unique in that they boost both the visibility of offline and online local advertising, reaching consumers that other local media do not. So while it’s important for local businesses to reach consumers searching new media, it’s equally important for them to secure visibility in traditional spaces where consumers are searching and they otherwise would miss.

As Local Search Goes Mobile, Search Engines, Yellow Pages, and Store Circulars/Email Promotions/Coupons Top Local Media Reach

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Today, we are releasing results from our annual “Local Media Tracking Study,” which provides key insights into the reach of various local media sources. In this first of two blog posts, I discuss results related to local mobile usage and overall local media trends; in the second post, I do a deep dive into results on Yellow Pages usage.

Our study, which was conducted by Burke, Inc. throughout 2012, showed that while U.S. adults increasingly turned to online sources for local business information, the most significant growth was in use of mobile phones/smartphones and netbooks/tablets for local search. The research reinforced the results from our “Local Mobile Search Report,” which illustrated a continuing shift to mobile usage among consumers in the local space, at the expense of stationary computers and laptops.

Results show consumers are best reached through an integrated advertising approach that leverages both online and offline media. The study found that as the number of local online media increases (Ratings & Reviews and Daily Deals were added to the survey in 2012), both online and offline media continue to attract sizable consumer audiences.

(Click here to view and/or download PDF version of infographic.)

Here are my key takeaways from the above results:

  • Consumers are going mobile and businesses need to follow. In order to keep up with consumers’ increasing use and affinity for mobile devices when searching for and purchasing products and services, it’s important for local businesses to ensure their online efforts support key mobile devices and introduce smartphone- and tablet-friendly websites in order to remain competitive and attract new customers.
  • For those on a budget, businesses should focus on making their websites mobile-friendly or mobile-responsive before considering mobile applications.  However, mobile applications certainly have strategic advantages and may be better suited in some circumstances, such as if the website is repeatedly and/or heavily used as part of a service being provided.
  • Local businesses should strive for an integrated, wide-ranging presence across online and offline media in order to reach their target consumers wherever they search, keeping in mind that offline media continue to generate high results when compared to new online media. As an example, see my next post on the study’s Yellow Pages result.

Gordon Borrell to Kick Off ‘Social + Mobile’ with Look at Last 100 Years in Advertising

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

According to Borrell Associates, by 2017 mobile advertising spend is expected to nearly triple and social media advertising spend is expected to quadruple. But there is no reason for local media to wait around until 2017 to get in the social and mobile game. Today, advertisers big and small are asking for mobile and social solutions, and they are ready to make the dive into these evolving technologies.

To help bring some clarity and direction to local media companies trying to figure out how to utilize social and mobile to grow their business, the Local Search Association, Borrell Associates and the Local Media Association have all partnered to present the “Social + Mobile – Show Me the Money!” conference, August 21-22 in Chicago.

Gordon Borrell, CEO of Borrell Associates, will be kicking off the conference with a fascinating look at how the entire advertising industry has morphed over the past 100 years into a complex labyrinth of marketing venues and formats that leaves most SMBs’ heads spinning.  By the second decade of the 21st century, Gordon says that the average person is exposed to as many as 5,000 marketing messages a day — yet only six are noticed.  “How do you break through the noise to become one of those six?  I think the answer will surprise a lot of people,” he said.

Mobile and social media has only made things more complex for local media. “But in complexity comes opportunity,” Gordon said.  ”We’re sitting on some incredible research that shows exactly what that opportunity is, and the two or three things that local media companies need to do to tweak their strategies to capture that opportunity.”

Gordon’s presentation will pinpoint key growth opportunities in the social and mobile space.  He’ll also identify the companies doing the best job of seizing market share and what products and services they’re selling.

It will be a real treat hearing from Gordon considering his expertise and status as one of the media industry’s leading analysts. He is ranked in the top 2% among Gerson Lehrman Group’s 150,000 consultants worldwide and is quoted frequently in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Ad Age, Forbes and other publications. He has appeared on CNN and other TV and radio programs discussing trends and forecasts for local media.

Check out the full agenda for SoMoConf and REGISTER by Friday, June 7 to take advantage of the early-bird rate ($100 off) plus an extra $100 off with the coupon code “Save100.” On behalf of LSA, LMA and Borrell Associates, we look forward to seeing you there!

LSA, LMA, Borrell Partner to bring ‘Social + Mobile’ Conference in Chicago

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


We are very excited to announce that we are partnering with two progressive media organizations, the Local Media Association and Borrell Associates, to host one powerful conference.  Join us in Chicago on August 21-22 for Social + Mobile – Show Me the Money!

There is a ton of data and research that shows just how big of an impact social and mobile is having on the local media and search space.  Here are just a few stats worth noting:

  • Of 1,000 SMBs surveyed, 97 percent are using social media channels for their marketing efforts (Constant Contact)
  • 77 million smartphone owners relied on apps to visit local content in December 2012 (Local Search Association)
  • Facebook app is used more for local business searches than MapQuest, Apple Maps and Bing’s app (comScore-15 Miles-Neustar)

In light of the impact of social and mobile on local media and search, you should join us at this exciting conference as we dive into the dollars and cents behind this recent shift in the industry.  Come learn about:

  • What’s working in social and mobile.
  • What’s generating revenue and ROI.
  • What the most promising business models look like.

The full agenda is now available and includes content from leaders with Internet pure plays, TV, radio, newspapers, directory publishers and more. Members and clients of all organizations receive $200 off the registration price.  Register here.  Also, an exclusive hotel rate has been secured for all conference attendees, but it expires on June 30th. To take advantage of the rate, click here.

We look forward to seeing you there!