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DomainFest Panel: Acquiring & Monetizing Traffic Using Local, Mobile, Social & Video

Raw Notes from DomainFest Global, February 1-3, 2011

DomainSherpa.com Exclusive Pictures from DomainFest Global, February 1-3, 2011 — You’re In there!

Panel: Acquiring and Monetizing Traffic Using Local, Mobile, Social and Video

Experts: Massimo Burgio, Branden Claisse, Bruce Crair, Richard Jalichandra, Andy Adkins Krumer (sp?, stand-in to panel)
Moderator: Scott Morrow

From the program: “Our expert panelists will discuss how local, social, mobile, and video are merging to meet user content needs. They will then discuss the latest advertiser and publisher trends and techniques in acquiring and monetizing traffic from these increasingly popular and important sources. Bring your Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and SmartPhone App questions.”

DomainFest Panel: Acquiring & Monetizing Traffic Using Local, Mobile, Social & Video

“Each of these areas is so distinct that we could probably do a panel on each, but we’ll try.” This panel will try to figure out what are the trends, and how do they impact consumers. What is the role of video in local:

Andy: Video is about engaging with your local audience to build audience and trust. Moving images is a stronger media to convince others to make a choice. If users are going to spend money, video can help more. Video can help with conversions because it’s cross platform (mobile, PC with same message).

Branden: Mobile from an advertisers standpoint, seeing the need to advertise with video growing. 1 of every 3 brand campaigns we do use video in some sort of way. Demand is there (always been there) and growing from an advertiser perspective in certain industries (automotive, for example).

David: What’s the right video strategy (user generated videos that are low cost, editorial video with higher cost, third party video with brand implications and cost)? It depends on budget, site footprint, where needs are at. YouTube API videos are free to enhance your content and integrated with your site. The YouTube channel is key because it’s the 2nd largest search engine — need YouTube channel because it can drive a ton of traffic to your website. If you have enough views, you can do a revenue share on YouTube as well.

How do you figure out balance of text and video?
Andy: Look at performance within search engines and take that into account. Don’t be dominated by video only. Too much text can destroy look and feel of page, but need enough to get ranked.

Branden: Data plans moving toward “all you can eat” so from a publisher perspective more and more videos are coming in because concerns about bandwidth are being alleviated.

How to make local scale cost-effectively:
Andy: Cannot duplicate information, which is easy to do with local content. In the end, that’s not offering true value to your advertisers, and will not get you the best results. Use local generated content with the content you’re putting in.

What are downstream complications of Google’s attack on spam websites:
David: Google has favored original canonical content, even smaller sites over larger sites. Spammers have caught on – original content mixed in with reused content, which makes it more subtle. Google may start to favor more established blogs in the future. Originality will help.

Andy: If you’re starting out, create your own blog and material — but volunteer your services to get links into your own blog. Or, you can buy a domain name that is seasoned, has a good PageRank score, and lots of incoming links to shortcut the process.

David: Start with your own content. Moderate the community, but encourage them to participate. Get your team, friends and colleagues to participate.

How would you explain the difference between video ads and TV ads, and how will it evolve?
Andy: Difference is not straight-forward. TV ads do work online. There’s always some sort of entertainment online, but on TV you can get away with “crap.” [Editor’s note: perhaps because online is more measurable, and with TV you launch and hope?]

Branden: Mobile combines opportunity to brand, action steps (commerce, click, link, call), location-based and makes mobile the the most unique advertising opportunity available.

Check-ins: Google Places, Facebook Places, FourSquare, GoWalla are all competing. Facebook Deals launches this week and adds to Facebook Places to compete with Groupon. Who has the advantages?
David: Groupon relies on feet on the ground to sell ads and do deals. Google rolling out Google Offers, which we wil soon see on Google Maps (desktop, smartphones, etc.). How much does each advantage provide is the critical question, and which is better for advertisers?

Andy: A Groupon / Yelp merger might be the ultimate winner.

Branden: Dozens of mobile media networks. There’s a misconception that there will be one ultimate winner. We’re still in the early days. There will be winners, but it’s not necessarily that the losers will go out of business.

Social media question:
David: Every advertiser needs to look at social media as a must. The amount of time people spend on social media is incredible. It’s a great way to win or lose mind-share. American Express is doing a small business Saturday campaign: send people to the site. Doing a good thing, indirectly related to their products, raised money for a charity, got a fantastic amount of Likes on Facebook. Every brand needs to think about how they want people to associate with their brands.

What are the measurements of social media?
David: Years ago, PR would have done all the social media. Today, it’s the marketing budget that’s getting involved. Social sharing should be an integral part of anyone’s marketing plan. If advertisers are afraid of negative press: don’t have a conversation about your brands or products; associate with something larger, like a charity.

Who’s leveraging mobile and doing it well, to make money?
Branden: Biggest spend coming from movie studios, automotive, retail, packaged goods. Not all that different from other mediums. The difference is there are some unique opportunities in mobile: view trailer, purchase trailer; check-out commercial, do comparison shopping; location-awareness. On publisher side, sports magazine, for example, can deliver information via mobile and get great success because people want scores on the go. Social has also had tremendous growth. Broad cost per range: premium channels like name brand media companies get one rate, self-serve gets another. On average, CPC ranges from $0.05-0.30, CPMs on premium side $5-20. Joe’s sport blog doesn’t get as much as ESPN. Being able to serve certain media types gets premiums too.

Andy: Very few advertisers are acting on international social media sites. Only a handful are doing it well, and they’re in the technology sector.

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