Several national newspaper sites have inked deals with Outside.in, a company which focuses on aggregating hyper-local content and pairing it with advertisers.
In recent months, Outside.in has formed partnerships with some of the country’s most well-known publishers, including The Miami Herald, Dow Jones Local Media Group, New York Post, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and properties of the Tribune Company, including Chicago Tribune and the Baltimore Sun. (via MediaBuyerPlanner).
Aggregating News about 50,000+ Neighborhoods
Outside.in monitors all the news, blogs and discussions on the web, maps them to more than 50,000 neighborhoods in the U.S., and allows publishers to create targeted, customized Neighborhood News Pages geared toward readers of every city, town and neighborhood in a publisher’s market.
This specific readership gives advertisers a way to reach a highly engaged and targeted audience, theoretically at a cheaper price than advertising on a less targeted page.
Newspapers have long known that people have a deep interest in the news and events that are happening in their immediate neighborhoods, but the ability to create/find, organize, and distribute local content has been a challenge for many media companies. Yet with the fragmentation of media, and the ability of potential newspaper readers to find national news easily online via other sources, hyper-local content has become more valuable than ever to newspaper publishers.
In addition to growing its network of publisher partnerships, Outside.in says it has added 4,000 local bloggers to its roster and has seen traffic increased to more than seven million monthly unique visitors on the Outside.in Network. Outside.in currently services 57,830 neighborhoods, aggregates and organizes over 40,000 unique feeds, and provides neighborhood information to over 100 news websites.
Local Advertising Growth to Slow
While local online advertising is expected to have hit $14.2 billion in 2009 - a 12% increase over 2008, according to Borrell Associates - local online sales will slow this year, reaching $14.9 billion, or just 5% higher than 2009 figures.
This slowdown will likely occur because the market is approaching saturation and the “wave many locally focused media companies have been riding for the past several years has peaked,” the report said.
Local online advertising is expected to reach $16.4 billion by 2014.
Mobile to Drive Local Growth
Last year, BIA/Kelsey predicted that mobile local search ad revenues will grow to $130 million by 2013, and that mobile local searches will increase to 35% of all searches by 2013. Amid this growth, the Yellow Pages industry is seeing significant innovation on the mobile front, from new Yellow Pages iPhone apps to mapping technologies that deliver relevant local information to users on the go.
Meanwhile, the direct marketing industry is finding other ways to capitalize on the popularity of hyper-local content. Groupon, for example, is a site that offers deep discounts for local services such as restaurants, auto detailing, and spas in hyper-local areas.