One of the last sessions at Marketplaces 2010 focused on what local niche or media sites can do to better leverage opportunities to grow revenues. Sitting on the panel were Tony Lee of Adicio, Ken Kalb from Analog Analytics and Reed Brown from Matchbin, who all had similar views on how to help local media sites create revenues.
First and foremost on their lists was content. Lee commented that “sites need to deliver other bits of information that is not generally found locally.” Unique content that is locally focused drives traffic, particularly in areas such as high school sports or local jobs. Lee also pointed out that while the site may not have a particular focus, its audience may have a high need for local content making these sites lead generators.
Building off the content drive is the need to get the word out so the site can drive traffic to specific areas of content and create advertising opportunities via the traffic counts and demographics of the people served by the content. SEO and the use of social media are ways all three companies saw as important to building traffic. Reed Brown pointed out that, “social media is critical, but a publisher must zero in on the content that people are most interested in, then choose the right sites to share content with to build traffic.”
Kalb said that “while social is important, it is important to keep in mind that it is often hard to control and effectively manage getting people back to their site.”
The final component focused on delivering compelling offers across a variety of media so people can use and consume them wherever they might be. Kalb mentioned that Analog Analytics believes “coupon saving offers help drive traffic as long as they are accessible on both mobile and online so they are easily accessible. Mobile is the platform that is driving usage of coupons and promotional offers.”
What is clear from all three companies is that vertical niche sites and local media sites have the capability to drive revenues in specific ways by understanding their audience, finding ways to leverage their unique content and traffic, and tapping into areas where people are gathering online to drive additional traffic back to their sites.