A close second to video in terms of getting “airtime” here at the Drilling Down on Local show, has been (a two-way tie between) social media and mobile.
Leading up to the conference, there has been a lot of conversation about, and recent business activity around, social media. One way this has taken form is through features to capture user ratings and reviews. IAC Media & Advertising CEO Peter Horan confirmed this is meant to gain a trusted source of content and also deepen content for more effective SEO not to mention keeping up and remaining competitive with what is slowly becoming table stakes in local search.
Citysearch's recent acquisition of Insider Pages is indicative of this, as are recent moves by IYPs to launch review engines, including Yellowpages.com (and supportive of recent TKG forecast data). Challenges continue to exist and incite debate over how to integrate social media and deal with negative reviews, which can clearly be at odds with advertiser appeasement and retention.
There is also lots of opportunity in mobile search, as the mobile use case is conducive to searching for local products and services. Microsoft's acquisition of Tellme is representative of the interest in building more mobile local search applications (multi-modal voice search in this case) and pushing its adoption forward. We're also seeing a lot of development of and experimentation with many forms of mobile local search models throughout the marketplace.
We’ll get into this further in a separate post (and Local Media Journal) about today’s mobile panel, and Nokia Multimedia VP Ralph Kunz’s keynote. Also check out coverage from Donna Bogatin, who is here, blogging away.