MerchantCircle Teams with Demand Media for Answers Distribution

  |  April 13, 2010   |  Comments

Local business directory and marketing services firm MerchantCircle has paired with Demand Media-owned Answerbag to help small businesses show off their expertise.

Local business directory and marketing services firm MerchantCircle has paired with Demand Media-owned Answerbag to help small businesses show off their expertise. The hope is that by providing helpful tips to consumers in response to their direct questions, merchants will look less like mere business listings and more like real people with expert knowledge providing real services.

"It's really about getting your name out there and associating yourself with the topics people are searching for when they're in the market for your services," said Darren Waddell, VP of marketing at MerchantCircle. "It sort of short-lists you...being able to show that you know what you're talking about."

The deal allows MerchantCircle clients to distribute answers from its own Answers system to Answerbag. Like other Demand Media-owned sites such as eHow.com, Answerbag relies heavily on driving traffic to its practical content via search engines. MerchantCircle expects the relationship to help bring more traffic to its small business profile pages. The company said its own Answers offering has provided nearly 100,000 responses to consumer questions in six months.

"Their investment of time to answer that one question is now paying off more for them because they're getting more distribution," said Waddell.

A question posted to MerchantCircle Answers about which cleaning products to use on bathroom tile asks whether "some sort of diluted acid?" might do the trick. A response from one user goes into detail about her grout cleaning process, adding, "If you need any help look me up at www.alabamacleanteam.com I live and work in Trussville. Thanks."

One current drawback: Consumers seeking services may not necessarily be reading answers from merchants who service their area. However, Waddell suggested that shouldn't deter service providers from responding to questions from consumers, even if they're in the other side of the country. "The next time someone from California does a search for a related topic, they're going to find that thread," he said.

MerchantCircle has already partnered with Demand Media for the past two years to provide domain name registration to small businesses through Demand's eNom service.

The local business profile firm also announced a deal with local city guide publisher HelloMetro; the company will populate its local business listings using MerchantCircle's content.

ClickZ Live Chicago Join the Industry's Leading eCommerce & Direct Marketing Experts in Chicago
ClickZ Live Chicago (Nov 3-6) will deliver over 50 sessions across 4 days and 10 individual tracks, including Data-Driven Marketing, Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email. Check out the full agenda and register by Friday, Oct 3 to take advantage of Early Bird Rates!

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

IBM: Social Analytics - The Science Behind Social Media Marketing

IBM Social Analytics: The Science Behind Social Media Marketing
80% of internet users say they prefer to connect with brands via Facebook. 65% of social media users say they use it to learn more about brands, products and services. Learn about how to find more about customers' attitudes, preferences and buying habits from what they say on social media channels.

An Introduction to Marketing Attribution: Selecting the Right Model for Search, Display & Social Advertising

An Introduction to Marketing Attribution: Selecting the Right Model for Search, Display & Social Advertising
If you're considering implementing a marketing attribution model to measure and optimize your programs, this paper is a great introduction. It also includes real-life tips from marketers who have successfully implemented attribution in their organizations.

Jobs

    • Tier 1 Support Specialist
      Tier 1 Support Specialist (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreThis position requires a highly motivated and multifaceted individual to contribute to and be...
    • Recent Grads: Customer Service Representative
      Recent Grads: Customer Service Representative (Agora Financial) - BaltimoreAgora Financial, one of the nation's largest independent publishers...
    • Managing Editor
      Managing Editor (Common Sense Publishing) - BaltimoreWE’RE HIRING: WE NEED AN AMAZING EDITOR TO POLISH WORLD-CLASS CONTENT   The Palm...