Local Advertisers Moving to Web

It’s obvious from the outstanding turn out we get for our “Web Advertising 101” seminars. In every city we travel to, from Chicago to Scranton, small and mid size businesses are moving more of their marketing budgets over to the Internet. Once they get some some basic education, encouragement and proof that it will work, they starting making the move to web.

Local business wants to buy Internet advertising.

Who will teach the local advertiser? Optimally, it should be the traditional reps from the local media company. They have the relationships, the trust, and the ear of the local advertiser. The challenge though, is that the traditional reps need a better understanding of how to effectively sell the benefits of the web, in a clear, simple way that the small business can grasp. That is not easy, especially when many traditional reps rely on the local “web expert” to help them through the sales call.

TIP: it’s not a good thing when a newspaper or TV rep responds to a client who wants web, and says…..”let me get my web guru in here to talk to you. I’m not too sure about this web thing”. This makes the traditional rep look out of touch and disconnected from the new world of advertising.

The race in on. Ad dollars are moving online, with TV, Radio and Newspapers ramping up their local sales efforts with varying degrees of success. The current soft economy only accelerates this process. The smart local properties understand they’re primarily competing with Google, ReachLocal, ServiceMagic and other online media companies that have their eyes set on local ad dollars.

Few will profit, most will fail. In each market, only a very few Broadcast & Newspaper companies will turn an online profit. With outside ‘pure-plays’ taking about 50% of every dollar out of the market, the remaining ad dollars will be sucked up by the most aggressive, serious players.