Local Ad Market Drives Online Players Offline

    October 9, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

Reaching the typical brick and mortar small business and offering online advertising has compelled Internet players to hit the bricks themselves.

The age of the door-to-door salesperson has returned. This one isn’t bearing cosmetics or kitchen knives, however, but online advertising instead.

The Los Angeles Times noted ReachLocal picked up $55.2 million in funding, to help it find high-tech customers through a decidedly low-tech approach – salespeople pitching Internet ads in person.

ReachLocal helps these businesses with placing ads on services like Google, Yahoo, and other major Internet presences. A small business likely doesn’t have the ability to dedicate someone to managing online ad campaigns; ReachLocal does that work for them.

Of course, they have competition, namely in Google. The dominant search engine has its own feet on the street seeking local business, through its Business Referral Representative program.

Local search represents a multi-billion dollar piece of the overall online advertising market. The specialized needs of managing online advertising, even if it’s just an issue of time, could make ReachLocal and its competitors a lucrative return as small businesses turn to them for expertise.