Posts Tagged ‘xAD’

SoMoConf Speaker Spotlight: Jon Silverman, Sr. Account Executive, Platform Sales, xAd

Monday, August 4, 2014

Today’s Social + Mobile: Show Me the Money! speaker spotlight features Jon Silverman, senior account executive, platform sales at xAd.  Jon and the rest of the team at xAd help brands harness the power of accurate location data in order to produce measurable results from mobile advertising.

Jon Silverman, Sr. Account Executive, Platform Sales, xAd

Prior to joining xAd about a year ago, Jon was a director of national sales for Digital First Media which reaches 64 million Americans each month across 14 states through 800 multi-platform products like the Denver Post and San Jose Mercury News.  In addition, Jon worked as an advertising sales executive at The Economist and was a managing director at Mediaplanet in New York.

We asked Jon a few questions about his upcoming SoMoConf session, and here is what he had to say:

What are the key topics you’ll discuss during your session?
I hope to discuss what has worked really well for local traditional media companies who are using mobile to ensure their clients are seeing increased business both in terms of foot traffic, and calls.

What about your session are you most excited about?
I am excited about all the work that Cox and xAd have already done, as well as xAd’s own success in selling mobile.  It’s a big turning point for traditional media companies as circs drop, TV share of voice getting creeped on by Tablet/Smartphone, etc…so it’s a very interesting time to include mobile in the toolbox of the traditional media outlets.

Why is it important that attendees not miss your session?
Everyone is asking about mobile.  There’s a TON of great info as well as misinformation out there, and if anyone misses this session, they might not be in a position to talk about mobile’s success when combined with traditional media.

What excites you most about mobile advertising?
The connections.  A lot of people get freaked out by the targeting capabilities we have, but once they understand them, it’s a great feeling for me.  The fact that we can glean insight into what people are searching for, and then target based on this connects consumers and business more efficiently and successfully.

Click here to learn more about the SoMoConf event or register now!

Top Takeaways from Street Fight Summit West

Monday, June 9, 2014

I had a great time this past week at the Street Fight Summit West conference in San Francisco. In attendance were around 300+ advertising and technology professionals, representing publishers, digital agencies, brands, analysts, start-up tech companies, mobile and social media companies, listing management companies and everyone in-between.

It was a well-rounded event that provided interesting insights.  Here are my top takeaways:

  • As technology evolves – and mobile devices replace desktops as go-to devices – marketers will need to determine ways to leverage location-specific and other data points to personalize content for consumers throughout the purchasing process. The challenge will come in connecting very different types of data to develop more personalized recommendations for consumers.
  • According to Ted Zagat of Facebook, personalized ads deliver 65% better reach than standard online advertising. Despite this, attribution remains a challenge.
  • The technology isn’t there yet for robust datasets based on close proximity. However, it’s coming soon with LTE Direct and beacon technology.
  • The future of commerce lies at the intersection of the digital and physical marketplaces.
  • Approximately 50% of consumers consider mobile the most important resource in the purchase decision-making process. One-third of consumers use mobile exclusively when making purchasing decisions. (xAd/Telmetrics)
  • Two years ago, mobile didn’t account for any of Facebook’s revenue. Today, mobile is 59% of Facebook’s revenue. In fact, Facebook and Instagram now equal 22% of total mobile ad spend.
  • Reputation = brand awareness for the SMB.
  • Recommendations have much better margins than discounts. One-third of Amazon’s business comes from recommendations.
  • “Clicks don’t matter”. According to Facebook, there is no correlation between clicks and offline sales. Impressions are more attributable to offline activity.
  • Prediction: $1.4 trillion of physical in-store sales is influenced by digital.
  • Mobile applications are becoming more focused. Apps that can do one task really well tend to perform better than apps that try to do too many things. For instance, Foursquare is staying ahead of the curve by splitting up into Swarm (check-ins and social) and Foursquare (discovery).
  • Prediction: One day, the majority of consumers will begin to feel comfortable with sharing data.
  • In-store messaging needs to sound like a friend or consultant is communicating with the consumer instead of a marketer.

As you can see, there was some great discussions taking place at the conference. I want to thank Street Fight for putting on a tremendous event!

Infographic: Over 50% of Consumers Reach for Mobile at Start of Path to Purchase

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Consumers now spend more time online via mobile devices than PCs.  This migration has led to a shift in how consumers make local purchase decisions.  According to Telmetrics and xAd’s Mobile Path to Purchase study, mobile is now the device of choice for consumers beginning their purchase process.

Consumers who reach for the mobile device first are more open to influence. The study, which is now in its third year, showed that just one out of five mobile shoppers knew exactly what they were looking for compared to the one out of three in 2013. This decline suggests mobile shoppers are increasingly using mobile to “explore” instead of simply locating a specific business.

Nonetheless, many of these mobile shoppers end up finding what they are looking for, with about two out of three mobile searches ultimately leading to a purchase. The restaurant category is finding some of the strongest conversion from mobile local searches, with about 80% resulting in a purchase.

“The truly pervasive nature of mobile is reinforcing the opportunity for advertisers to pursue mobile’s ready to buy audience and clearer performance metrics,” said Bill Dinan, president of Telmetrics.

Check out the infographic below for more:

Top 5 Local Ad Stats of the Week: Display Ads

Friday, May 23, 2014

While eMarketer estimates that U.S. spending on digital and mobile display ads will grow faster than any other format this year, there is still a lot of debate on the effectiveness of this form of advertising.  While these ads can be a strong way to build awareness, they have typically come up short in regards to driving consumer actions.

Low click-through rates, fraudulent impressions and the “fat-finger” issue in mobile have all contributed to uncertainty about the effectiveness of display.  Interest has shifted to native forms of display, which are proving to be a stronger alternative.  Additionally, smartphones are providing a platform for more relevant, location-based messages that tend to have higher engagement rates.

Here are some stats that highlight the pros and cons of digital and mobile display ads:

  • Targeted mobile display ads performed nearly 15% above the industry average. (xAd)
  • 54% of online display ads shown in “thousands” of campaigns measured by comScore from May 2012 – February 2013 weren’t seen by anyone. (comScore)
  • On average, display ads only gain around 1 click every 1000 impressions. (DoubleClick)
  • Fraudulent or fake display ad impressions account for as much as 30% of all online traffic today. (MdotLabs)
  • Native ads—units delivered within core content areas—were seen 47% more quickly than banner ads in traditional locations on the same pages. (Infolinks)

Be sure to check back next Friday for our next edition of Top 5 Local Ad Stats of the Week. In the meantime, have a great holiday weekend!

Top 10 Reasons to Attend LSA|14 in Huntington Beach

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The 2014 Local Search Association Conference kicks off in just 10 days!  Here are the top 10 reasons you won’t not want to miss the premier local advertising and marketing event of the year:

10. Idea Labs: These intimate focus groups taking place on Sunday, April 27 will dive into a variety of topics impacting the local space.  With six sessions scheduled, there is sure to be something that piques your interest.

9. Expo Hall: With 25 companies participating and counting, the Expo Hall will feature an array of interesting companies on display just outside of the Grand Ballroom where the General Session will take place.

8. Hyatt Regency Resort & Spa: Dubbed Surf City USA, Huntington Beach is a mecca of all things surfing. Don’t forget to take in a beautiful sunset as well!

7. Yacht Cruise and “Landlubbers” Party: Whether you’re at sea or on land, these parties are sure to be great opportunities to relax, catch up and make some new connections with leaders and decision makers in the local space.

6.  Increased Value, Lower Price: LSA|14 provides quality, top-level speakers, productive networking opportunities and the powerful insights that you have come to expect from our annual event – available for an average savings of $700 compared to last year’s admission.

5. Influential Speakers: In addition to Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak, we have nearly 50 influential speakers booked from companies including Google, comScore, YP, Bing, LivingSocial, xAd, JiWire, Retale and Wanderful Media.

4. Attendee List: Just last week, 54 high-ranking local pros registered for LSA|14. At that rate, we expect to be well over 400 attendees for this year’s event!

3. Ad to Action Awards: We received 60 strong entries across eight categories for our new awards program. You won’t want to miss learning about how these innovative local advertising solutions are driving consumer actions, including calls, clicks and store visits.

2. Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak: Innovator and Silicon Valley icon “The Woz” will discuss the intersection of future technologies, his favorite new products and his predictions for mobile and wearable devices.

1. Last Mile Advertising: With this new way to talk about “local,” we will bring clarity, definition and understanding to our space.  Come see how your organization fits into the ecosystem, and stake your claim in the Last Mile!

Time is running out! Register today and we will see you soon in SoCal!

Day 2 at LSA|14 features speakers from Bing, Google, JiWire, PlaceIQ and more!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

You saw the exciting activities, events and Idea Labs set for Day 1 of our 3-day jam-packed event, April 27-29 in SoCal.  Now let’s take a look at some of the highlights for Day 2 of LSA|14:

Main Stage Sessions

  • Kristen Coit, Head of Directories and Web Hosting (Google)
  • The Cross-Screen Opportunity (Mobile Media Summit, Digitaria)
  • Making it Easy for Small Businesses (Bing)
  • Measuring Real World Results from Mobile Ads (xAd, JiWire, PlaceIQ, YP)
  • National Advertiser Perspective (VCA Animal Hospital)
  • How Digital Offers & Couponing Help Customers Find Locations (Street Fight, Retale, Wanderful Media)
  • Global Leadership Panel (YP, Sensis, Zap Group, Trudon Ltd., Radicle Consulting)

For a list of all the sessions and descriptions of each, visit the Agenda Page.

New Member/Partner Member Yacht Cruise (invitation only)
This exclusive networking event will take place on board the Ambassador yacht for a few hours of cruising the coast.  Sponsored by Thrive Analytics and Local Market Launch, this will be a great way to make new connections while taking in the beautiful scenery of Southern California.

Findability: Discovery and the Real Value of Content in Local Search
While enjoying breakfast, hear about the differences between consumers looking for a specific branded product, service or provider versus consumers looking without a product, service or provider in mind. The latter is how the vast majority of searches take place and represents a true growth opportunity in local search online and also the vast majority of the searches taking place. Local Market Launch will explore what content is important, how to produce it, who in or outside the organization should produce it and where it should be distributed to address this market opportunity.

For more details, visit our Agenda Page – and if you haven’t already done so, register now for LSA|14!

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!

Answers to FAQs about LSA|14 in Huntington Beach

Friday, March 14, 2014

When it comes to local advertising and marketing we are still hearing a lot of confusion around what “local” actually means. Is it simply reaching audiences based on location or is it more than that? Well, we have some thoughts on the topic and will be revealing our perspective and the research that backs it up at the 2014 Local Search Association Conference in Huntington Beach, Calif., April 27-29.

But before that, here are answers to some FAQs about LSA|14 that are just teasers to the rich agenda we have planned:

What is the focus of the event?
Simply put, innovation and local. We plan on kicking off the conference by defining “local” and showing you what it looks like today. From there, each session will hit on established practices and innovative ways to drive local consumer actions and ROI. In addition, our Ad to Action Awards will highlight some of the most innovative local ad solutions across eight different categories.

Any big names speaking?
Is Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak big enough for you? But the list of great speakers doesn’t begin and end there. We have about 50 influential speakers booked for LSA|14 from companies like Google, comScore, YP, Bing, xAd, JiWire, Retale, Wanderful Media and many more.

Where is the event?
The Hyatt Regency Resort & Spa in Huntington Beach, Calif.  Bike along the coast, hit the links, learn to surf or just watch the sun set over the Pacific. It’s a beautiful place with plenty to do.

What kind of networking opportunities are there?
The entire LSA|14 event is extremely conducive to making new connections and catching up with old ones. With five networking events, the Expo Hall and lots of networking breaks during the day, you’ll get plenty of chances to meet decision makers within the local ad space.

Are there any speaking opportunities?
While our agenda is almost complete, we are offering sponsored speaking opportunities that we are calling, “Company Spotlights.” This is a great opportunity for those of you looking to introduce or remind the local space of your organization or new solution. You’ll get five minutes of the crowd’s undivided attention on the main stage which is plenty of time to make a splash!

Click here for more information on the LSA|14 conference.

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!

LSA’s Inaugural “Think Tank” Event in NYC Brings Together Industry Leaders

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Earlier this month, the Local Search Association held our first-ever “Think Tank” event in New York City. The gathering, which was the first in what will be an ongoing series in major U.S. media markets, is part of our new effort to bring together local advertising leaders on a more frequent basis to discuss new ideas and trends in our industry, as well as foster deeper relationships between partners and competitors alike.

Our communications manager, Joe Morsello, and I were pleased to host executives from notable companies including Google, YP, Yelp, xAd, UBL, Kenshoo, LocalVox Media, MPayMe, MRY and IAB for an informal reception and dinner at The Lion restaurant in the city’s Greenwich Village. 

The evening, which began with brief introductions, was followed by discussions by attendees about current and future opportunities in our industry. 

While our conversations spanned numerous topics, below are several insights that grabbed our attention:

  • While location is the start of local advertising, there are countless other considerations to explore. The group discussed how the next phase of targeting will use data that shows consumer behavior and preference.
  • Word of mouth continues to be critical in local. Word of mouth is still one of the strongest influences for consumers on where to spend money locally. Local SMBs need help determining how to increase word of mouth with their marketing programs.
  • Display ads – like TV commercials – lead to consumer actions outside of clicks alone. Display ads lead to online searches, phone calls, and store visits, among other actions. The challenge we all face is how to successfully measure those actions.
  • Mobile usage isn’t confined to people on-the-go. In fact, a large share of mobile usage takes place within the home.
  • Consumers are hungry for a more “3D” local experience. Alice Hazen, National Client Partner at Yelp, noted that consumers want local search tools to “give me what I want (that I didn’t know I wanted), right at the moment I need it.” Consumers want – and expect – that local tools will anticipate their next moves and purchases.
  • Local involvement is key for larger retailors. Alice discussed that on Yelp, national/multi-location advertisers are more successful when store managers get involved and individually represent the company.
  • Most ads currently provide only one experience, when there is an opportunity to provide many more. Peter Minnium, Head of Digital Brand Initiatives at IAB, said that while our industry is good at targeting ads by audience and demographic, we miss a lot of other local cues. He noted that even though our industry has access to a growing amount of data, we haven’t seemed to figure out how to use all of it to our advantage.
  • Last Mile is everything that happens between targeting by location and consumer action. Peter discussed how local advertising today requires more context and data at each stage of the path to purchase in order to be successful.
  • Local businesses want face-to-face interactions with local advertising providers. Chris Travers, President and Co-Founder, UBL noted that when SMBs find out they can’t meet a sales person in person, they are immediately turned off.

I want to thank everyone who participated in our first “Think Tank” event. The feedback we received from the group was extremely positive. Many who attended enjoyed the opportunity to network and discuss relevant industry issues in an intimate local setting. 

We’re already in the planning stages of our next event – this time in the Windy City of Chicago! – and looking at how to incorporate ways to improve the sessions so that they are as useful and productive as possible.

We’ll keep you updated on future “Think Tank” events, so stay tuned!