“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.