Marketplaces 2010: Small-Business Marketplaces
“What’s missing from online markets that offline markets have?” Jim Delli Santi from AlikeList sees that online markets need to develop better relationships, utility, transparency and establish ROI. Word of mouth drives trade. Consumers want to find the right business to address their need fast. Small businesses want transparency, trust and measurable ROI.
Ethan Anderson, Redbeacon, talked about “the pain and the promise” in fulfilling a need for local service. Consumers want the right person for the right job; someone who gets the job done right; and the ability to compare prices and online scheduling. It’s great to get advice from people you trust, both professionals and friends. Adding that social element adds a lot of value. Partnering with trusted communities, such as BigTent is a great way to extend trusted reach.
Sean Fox, Reply.com, dealt with problems in local online targeting. Targeting can be complicated, imprecise and expensive. The “enhanced click” combining intent with geography is a solution. For example, looking for auto insurance on a Web site can bring up a dialog box probing for a ZIP code and asking whether the user is currently insured; this creates an enhanced click that goes into a marketplace as a qualified lead. This launches a real-time auction. Advertisers purchase different kinds of inventory to get access to this marketplace. “Abandonment rates” for people refusing to fill out the lead forms necessary to create enhanced clicks are dealt with by still providing links to consumers.
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Our new company was very pleased with this Kelsey conference focused on Verticals, Marketplaces and Mobile Local. The key business trends that surfaced in the panel discussions and keynotes brought our new social-local team up to speed quickly while gleaning extremely valuable market insights that we have been discussing with colleagues since we left. This conference has also been valuable for initiating new potential partnerships and meeting many of our industry’s thought leaders.
Without question we will be planning to participate in future Kelsey Conferences. As I learned before in prior roles at other local online companies, BIA Kelsey conferences are absolutely essential if you are going to be considered seriously in this exciting industry. After 15 years the time for serious investment in local has come. We could not be more excited to be a part of it.
The Kelsey Group and their conferences are critical to compete. To meet the people we don’t know, that we should know and to understand the strategies that lead to success. The lessons learned will save us endless time and money, and we completely endorse Kelsey Conferences as the place to be, if you want to be in local.