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DMS10_logo_RGBWith just a few days remaining before the start of our DMS ’10 conference in Dallas, we wanted to preview a couple of hot topics that will likely receive a lot of buzz at the show. I will be co-moderating a session on Leads-Based Selling, about as hot a topic as there is in the directories space. The 45-minute panel kicks off at 4:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 15.

We’ll hear about the industry’s shift to leads-based selling from Dex One, No Problem, MediaTrust and Skype. Is this a business model shift that will sustain the Yellow Pages, especially in major markets, over the long term?

The premise behind the shift to leads-based selling in Yellow Pages is that publishers still are among the best at driving quality leads, but the perceived value of their product is perhaps at an alltime low. By shifting the discussion with SMBs from specific products to the ability to drive measurable leads, sales will improve, so the argument goes.

Stephen Gibbons of Dex will kick off the discussion, giving us the view from the sole directory publisher on the panel and how Dex is incorporating leads-based selling into its model. No Problem and MediaTrust will provide the platform provider angle, showing us how they’re making cost-per-click, cost-per-lead and cost-per-acquisition models work for media companies. No Problem will discuss its real-time lead bidding approach offering a unique view on driving leads-based revenues. Skype will round out the panel, sharing how it is leveraging its position as a leading online phone service to drive leads (calls) to advertisers via its partnership model with players such as European Directories and Marchex. Another player to take a look at while at the show is sponsor Akesios, which also has a lead-based selling platform and has worked with European Directories as a partner on the Skype application.

Be sure not to miss this opportunity to hear mini case-studies of why these leading companies see leads-based selling as crucial to their businesses or to helping your business now. We’ll treat you to a cocktail at the reception right after the panel. 🙂

4:45 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. — Leads-Based Selling: Salvation or False Hope?
These days, it’s hard to find a publisher that admits to being in the Yellow Pages business. Instead, the narrative is all about being in the business of delivering quality leads to small-business customers. So what does this really mean, in practical terms? How does the transition to a leads-based business affect sales, systems, revenues and profitability? Ultimately, the question is whether the movement to leads-based selling is a fundamental shift in the business or just clever marketing. We’ll ask those who are in the midst of the shift to explain how it all works.

Trip Foster, VP Marketing, MediaTrust
Stephen Gibbons, VP of Marketing, Urban Strategies, Dex One
Daniel Shaked, Founder and CEO, No Problem
Andy Sims, Global Director of Advertising, Skype

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