Citysearch Unveils Custom Films for Local Advertisers

  |  May 2, 2007   |  Comments

The IAC/InterActiveCorp firm is offering short advertorial videos through a partnership with TurnHere.

Citysearch is introducing advertorial video and ditching the leaderboard.

In its ongoing efforts to woo small local advertisers away from traditional local ad venues, the IAC/InterActiveCorp firm is offering local proprietors short videos highlighting their establishments, produced by commercial short-film producer, TurnHere. Pre- and post-roll ads in separate editorial video content are set to come later this year.

"The leaderboard is a unit that's just reached its life expectancy," said Scott Morrow, EVP, product and marketing at Citysearch. The large narrow ad format, continued Morrow, "is low value for the consumer, and it's low value for the advertiser."

The local business search, ratings and review service is also introducing a large square "mantle" unit and will offer a smaller "cityscape" placement in the future. Sponsorships of "Insider" section content will also be available. The company has decided to focus more on those select display offerings rather than cluttering the page with multiple placements. "Having less ads actually provides higher performance," said Morrow.

Citysearch has sold 700 short videos to local businesses, such as New York eatery Cuba and custom cake creator Snooky's. The firm is offering the videos exclusively to its local pay-for-performance advertisers, according to Morrow. Thus far, 300 of the clips will be live on Citysearch business profile pages in top markets including New York, LA, San Francisco, and Chicago.

The company is including the films as part of ad packages provided to businesses spending around $800 or more on performance-based advertising each month. For advertisers spending below that amount, continued Morrow, "It's an up-sell opportunity for the local sales person to effectively provide video."

Citysearch has established relationship with short advertorial film producer TurnHere to create the mini-movies, which are sold and hosted by Citysearch. TurnHere's network of filmmakers produces professional films for local and national advertisers, such as InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, and has relationships with real estate firms to produce short videos about properties for sale. The Citysearch videos also will be made available on TurnHere's site.

"It's always been our plan to collaborate with partners that have local sales forces," TurnHere CEO Brad Inman told ClickZ News.

In January, Citysearch announced plans to ramp up its sales operation, opening a new sales office in Atlanta with intentions to nearly double its inside, outside, and national sales teams. The effort signaled the company's focus on scoring local advertiser dollars, putting it in direct competition with online yellow pages and classifieds services.

"It's important for us to be in the local markets selling local customers," said Morrow, who noted the company will be providing a wider variety of lead types to local advertisers, such as appointment scheduling with potential customers, in the coming year.

Though local advertisers are an important market for Citysearch, the company is developing video ad offerings for national advertisers as well. Pre- and post-roll video ads within editorial video content accompanied by display ads will be offered to national brands, most likely around early Q3 of this year, according to Morrow. The company sells display placements to national advertisers directly, through agencies and via ad networks. Currently, Citysearch sites don't feature editorial video content.

In addition to unveiling the new ad offerings, the firm has added content features to its city-centric sites, including more personalized and contextually-relevant navigation displaying recently viewed business profiles and a star-based ratings system to replace its former number-based ratings.

ClickZ Live San Francisco This Year's Premier Digital Marketing Event is #CZLSF
ClickZ Live San Francisco (Aug 11-14) brings together the industry's leading practitioners and marketing strategists to deliver 4 days of educational sessions and training workshops. From Data-Driven Marketing to Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email, this year's comprehensive agenda will help you maximize your marketing efforts and ROI. Register today!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kate Kaye

Kate Kaye was Managing Editor at ClickZ News until October 2012. As a daily reporter and editor for the original news source, she covered beats including digital political campaigns and government regulation of the online ad industry. Kate is the author of Campaign '08: A Turning Point for Digital Media, the only book focused on the paid digital media efforts of the 2008 presidential campaigns. Kate created ClickZ's Politics & Advocacy section, and is the primary contributor to the one-of-a-kind section. She began reporting on the interactive ad industry in 1999 and has spoken at several events and in interviews for television, radio, print, and digital media outlets. You can follow Kate on Twitter at @LowbrowKate.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

ClickZ Today is our #1 newsletter.
Get a daily dose of digital marketing.

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

BigDoor: The Marketers Guide to Customer Loyalty

The Marketer's Guide to Customer Loyalty
Customer loyalty is imperative to success, but fostering and maintaining loyalty takes a lot of work. This guide is here to help marketers build, execute, and maintain a successful loyalty initiative.

Marin Software: The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising

The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising
Latest research reveals 68% higher revenue per conversion for marketers who integrate their search & social advertising. In addition to the research results, this whitepaper also outlines 5 strategies and 15 tactics you can use to better integrate your search and social campaigns.

WEBINARS

Jobs

    • Interactive Product Manager
      Interactive Product Manager (Western Governors University) - Salt Lake CityWestern Governors University, one of the 20 largest universities...
    • SEO Senior Analyst
      SEO Senior Analyst (University of Phoenix (Apollo Education Group)) - San FranciscoSEO Senior Analyst   Position Summary...
    • SEM & Biddable Media Manager
      SEM & Biddable Media Manager (Kepler Group LLC) - New YorkAs an Optimization & Innovation Manager at Kepler Group, you will be on the bleeding...