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The new local apps as lead gen machines

The typical online strategy for small business is to set up a website, a Facebook page and maybe a Twitter account to broadcast the day’s deal or menu item. The marketing method is essentially passive like traditional advertising; it requires that customers find the sites, usually via search engines, offline knowledge or a referring link. […]

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Demanding accountability in local advertising

The Business Insider report that local merchants can purchase a Google Adwords ad at 1/10 the price on’s rate card, and still get placement isn’t a revelation. It confirms the reality of excess premium inventory that plagues traditional media display advertising, and the ease of gaming the media buy system to get the lower rack […]

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The problem with local advertising – it’s ugly

Advertising is an eyesore. Sao Paulo, Brazil, the world’s 7th largest city with a population of over 12 million, embarked on a policy of billboard free zones in 2006, and according to Good Cities, the masses are happy without the “visual pollution”. Billboards notwithstanding, local advertising – TV and radio commercials, newspaper ads, online banner ads […]

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Building Business Models Based on Local Influence

The advent of Klout and other new forms of social influence tabulation mirrors the power shift of media influence from traditional to social channels. Anybody with a voice can build a following, and the new business models evolving around influence metrics allow businesses to reward influencers with the hopes of converting them into advocates. Klout’s first foray […]

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Klout as Good Will Engine

Klout is known as a metric for assessing social influence. Like Google Page Rank, few understand what else Klout can do beyond being an iconic metric. One overlooked practical role that Klout faciliates is influencer curation. Through curation, brands garner good will by providing recognition, even rewards, to influencers who have synergetic relationships with that […]

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Twylah, Twitter, News and SEO

Twylah is a service that aggregates a Twitter feed and compiles the articles they link into a Flipboard like display.   Many reviewers have explained the mechanics of Twylah in far more detail than I can: Robert Scoble: “Twylah lets media brands and celebrities monetize their Twitter stream” Neal Schaffer: “Twitter SEO? Think Twylah“ We’ve […]

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Five reasons why traditional media advertising revenue is sloping towards zero

Journalists continue to search for a viable business model that supports online hyperlocal publications, but they won’t ever reach the threshold of revenues to maintain operations if they rely solely on traditional advertising fees from local merchants. That doesn’t mean local advertising is also poised to fall off a cliff. On the contrary, BIA/Kelsey states […]

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Hyperlocal Media as a Community Service

My article “Hyperlocal as Community Service Media” on Streetfight discusses why building local media resources to serve the community makes sense. Creating local media is no longer the province of media companies, curation and aggregation tools make it easy for anybody to develop a simple local media resource that maintains itself 24×7. The disruptive concept […]

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Hyperlocal media as a free community service could disrupt advertising models

The classic, and perhaps only business model supporting hyperlocal journalistic efforts like and other local media is local advertising. On last week, Ted Mann, Digital Development Director for Gannett NJ, discusses why Gannett’s hyperlocal experiment failed. The main and obvious reason is simply local advertising cannot adequately cover expenses. So… What if […]

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Why Groupon has Legs

With Facebook Deals and Google Offers launching the exact same service as Groupon (and have been tagged “Groupon Killers“), pundits are questioning Groupon’s sustainability and market share. Deals have become commodities, and Groupon will certainly lose market share simply due to the growing volume of deals being distributed by a wider array of publishers. So […]

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