Inman SF Connect: Yelp COO Geoff Donaker

Yelp COO Geoff Donaker, subbing at the last minute for a “very ill” CEO Jerremy Stoppelman, told an Inman SF Connect audience that Yelp’s base of 24 million + unique “Yelpers,” seven million reviews and “thousands” of advertisers represents a rich opportunity for any vertical small business – including realtors. Although Yelp takes a horizontal “lifestyle” approach to … Read more

AT&T Launches YP.com as Webby Complement to Yellowpages.com

AT&T Interactive today launched a beta version of YP.com, a website that won’t be heavily promoted but will add cutting edge features to searches, such as expandable local maps in results, aggregated SMB content, and videos, coupons and other promotions. AT&T bought the URL for $3.85 million from LiveDeal in January 2009. A company blog post notes that YP.Com Beta … Read more

Greenspun Pares Back ‘Online First’ Agenda; Jennewein Departs

Driven by the vision of newspaper innovators Rob Curley and Chris Jennewein, Greenspun Media, the publisher of The Las Vegas Sun, has spent heavily to develop a next generation local media division focused on online video, databases and other services. Indeed, it has sketched a path for other local media companies in the space. Its presentations have … Read more

All-Star Lineup at Marketplaces 2010, March 22-24, San Diego

Marketplaces 2010 takes place just 7 weeks from now in San Diego (March 22-24). We are putting the finishing touches on the program, and have added MANY exciting new speakers in just the past few weeks. The event is totally dedicated to the higher value/conversion/engagement ethos of vertical media. For sure, this isn’t one size fits … Read more

Marketplaces 2009: Top 10 Takeaways

Thanks for everyone who came out to LA for the Marketplaces 2009 conference this week– and to everyone who followed us on the blogs and Twitter. We had a great time. Here’s some topline takeaways. 1. The vertical online environment is still immature and will actually grow very healthily over the next several years. It is amazing to … Read more

Cablevision Still Bullish on Newsday Synergies, Despite Huge Write-Offs

Cablevision bet big on synergy (and ignored the CW about the newspaper industry) when it bought Newsday from Tribune Co. last summer for $650 million. Today, less than eight months later, it concedes that it has written off $402 million of that investment (a significantly worse investment than Stephen Marbury of Cablevision’s Knicks). Whether the economics of the … Read more

CitySquares Sees Traction; Expands to New England, New York

Boston-based CitySquares, which just celebrated its second anniversary, is getting about 70,000 unique visitors per month and now has a base of 700 advertisers, averaging $1,200 per year, reports CEO Ben Saren. He believes they have even more potential via upsells such as video, sponsored/display ads, etc. Roughly a third of the existing advertiser base is … Read more

Mixpo: SMB Videos Need to be ‘Actionable’

Video production and uploads have become standard upsells for Internet Yellow Pages, local portals and sales organizations in the age of YouTube. But once a business has a video, what do they do really do with it? How do they drive actions? That’s the question the gang at Mixpo has been trying to answer for the last year … Read more

SmallTown Offers ‘WebCards’ Via Google Gadget Ads, Others

SmallTown, the Bay Area hyperlocal company, is changing its core focus and will concentrate mostly on getting wider distribution of its WebCards microsites for small businesses. While the nine person company will continue to maintain its hyperlocal sites, which are now in six Bay Area communities, it sees a bigger opportunity in having third parties such … Read more

Leader of Washington Post’s HyperLocal Efforts Departs

You’ve got to figure if anyone is going to lead the local revolution in the newspaper space it is going to be The Washington Post. To me, the paper signaled its seriousness about hyperlocal when it hired two of its big guns: Arian Holovaty and Rob Curley. But Holovaty, the father of computer data journalism with chicagocrime.org, left a … Read more