ILM:10: Local Content Economics ‘Not Like Demand Media’

Content farms and aggregators are a major part of the new, scaleable local ecosystem. But the rules of the road are different for local content than for general content, according to executives speaking at ILM:10 in Santa Clara.

MerchantCircle Local Content Studio GM Andy Halliday noted that Merchant Circle is pumping up its context with local content, and now has 120,000 pieces of local content from 15,0o00 contributors after just six months. “Local content has a long tail but there are fewer searches per item,” said Halliday. “It is not the same economics as non-geo topical content like Demand Media.

Halliday also noted that local is “the wild west frontier for getting content up on the Web. It needs to have ‘liveness’ or it’s just a placard. More possibilities open up with the advent of mobile with geo-tracking,” he adds.

Local.com VP for Octane 360 Adam Rioux echoed Halliday’s view, noting that Octane is custom building content that Local.com can sell targeted advertising around. He also noted that Local.com is driving much greater usage for the content by distributing t he content not only to Local.com, but to its partner network, publishers and to SMB profiles.

Perfect Market CEO Julie Schoenfeld said the company has been successfully focusing on working with publishers to monetize non-mainstream content that may have low usage at first but can be pumped up with contextual placement based on search algorithms. It is now working with 30 publishers.

“Think of every article you produce as a deposit in the vault that yields dividends over time,” said Schoenfeld. She advised the audience that with location based services becoming more prevalent, “great meta data, including local geo-targeted content about when or where it was written, is very important.”

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