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Do Local Online Business Listings Matter for Your Business?

In a marketing climate that is shifting more and more toward digital channels, traditional advertising outlets are scrambling to reinvent themselves in order to capture audiences with changing consumption habits. Radio groups are streaming their content online and developing apps to appeal to consumers who want music on demand. The television advertising industry has changed with the advent of addressable and programmatic TV buying. And print publications are offering their content online to reduce costs and captivate audiences who are getting their news and entertainment on their smartphones and desktops. Being adaptable is important for the survival of these media channels, but not all of the services they are offering provide value for their advertisers.

In our experience, we’ve seen phone book companies and local print publications attempt to enter the digital marketing space by offering online business listings and direct placement of digital ads on their websites. These services do not provide value for advertisers for a number of reasons.

As of 2017, Google directs over 2 trillion search queries. With nearly 70% of the overall market share, and 93% of the mobile search market share, Google is by far the first place consumers look to when searching for a product or service – not secondary directories. Advertising on Google is essential. This is where prospective customers are going to find you.

One major advantage of advertising directly online as opposed to utilizing traditional media channels is the increased measurability and ability to target only your ideal customer. Working with our inventory partners, Ad House Advertising is able to place advertising messages in premium ad spaces, only in front of customers that, based on aggregate data, have been identified as likely to act on your message. Local print publications and business directories do not optimize their placement. When you purchase ad space from them, your message is placed in front of every visitor to their site, regardless of how likely they are to be interested in your product or service. This results in paying for a lot of wasted impressions.

There are however, directories that you do want to pay attention to. Google My Business is a must for nearly all businesses. Claiming your Google listing and regularly posting new content to your business’s Google+ page help improve your business’s organic search ranking. Customers can post reviews of your business via your Google My Business and Google+ pages, and the more reviews you have for your business, the more trustworthy the Google algorithms will deem your site. Seeing star ratings and reviews also signify trustworthiness to the customer, making prospects more likely to contact you.

If your business is in the hospitality or food service industry, it would also make sense to pay close attention to your Yelp ratings. Managing your online reputation is important, and Yelp is by far one of the most trusted online business directories in these verticals.

The digital marketing experts at Ad House Advertising have access to robust data from data aggregators that provide us with detailed insight into how consumers behave and how best to reach a specific audience. The media decisions we make are informed by numbers and are completely measurable. Our goal is to provide a return on every advertising dollar invested. For a free assessment of your company’s current marketing efforts and for a tailored marketing strategy and media plan, contact Ad House Advertising. We look forward to speaking with you!

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