Posted October 13, 2014

Sometimes we get so caught up in our Daily job, we forget to step back, and look at what is going on at your current job, and other companies in the same space. So I decided I would step back, and take a look!

First and foremost: Print Yellow Pages, is still in heavy decline. Make no mistake, folks still use the book, just not nearly as much. It is pretty clear, that finding the information you want about a business, or a particular vertical – folks are looking in many place.

Think about what you do daily, and nightly – grab that cell phone, smart phone, tablet, laptop. It has become about portability in a useable, readable, connected experience. To that end, Advertising has taken on a very unique way to reach the consumer.

Second: to match the consumer and advertiser – you need to spread the word in many ways. Mobile, Video, Website, Social Media, App, Search, Text, Print, Radio, TV, Billboard and on and on and on. Wow, how do you do that with a small monthly budget set aside to attract – generally buyers within 30 miles or less?

Third: Start simple – get a website that works on 3 of the 4 main screens – Desktop, Tablet, and Phone. TV is the forth screen, and that can be covered by your video. One you have a responsive website, promote it by being smart. Follow some simple rules:

1) Put it on your business cards, trucks, printed material.
2) Make sure your website has your phone number, address, and hours of operation – remember the basics.
3) Maintain a solid Customer Mailing list with Emails.
4) Ask for Email addresses always, customer, or potential customer.
5) Add your Social Media Links to your Website – Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and any others that make sense.
6) Make sure you post at least twice a month. Also, watch for users that respond to your business on the social feeds. Make sure you get back to them!

Advanced Rules:

1) Promote with Search Engine Marketing. This will get you placement on Google, Bing, and Yahoo…Quickly.
2) Setup solid Search Engine Optimization tactics: Solid Website, with Title Tags, Href, H tags, etc. This will get you found naturally on the Search Engines over time.
3) Track your results: Ask folks how they found you, use tracking phone numbers, use Proxy/Landing Pages with strong closing call to action.
4) Now you are ready to bring in additional media – Holistic Approach – find Buyers that use all sorts of media, Yellow Pages, Newspaper, TV, Radio etc.
5) Above all – tie it to your Digital Strategy. This is the future – better get there!

Posted February 6, 2014

Wow! Had a great meeting with about 200 plus of my team members. We reviewed some company changes, profit sharing, and product plans. I have sent the decks to the managers to share with the team members. It was great to talk about SEM, and how it is evolving. Discussing how each employee is part of the machine to make our products better, and better. How our Web Group, connects to SEO, SEM etc. We discussed my latest strategy meetings with Google, and how our Premier SMB Partnership has given us some great support from our Google support team. We continue to work with Google on unifying the Google + local/places pages, and how we can better mange the pin code that we are forced to enter to activate our businesses on the maps, carousel, +pages etc. I am looking forward to our expansion into new markets, and the continuing education on how Digital/Internet Marketing works for our partners and customers.

Regards,
Jeff Folckemer

Posted January 13, 2014

2014 has kicked off with new Vigor. LocalEdge had Partners from Australia, New Zealand, Los Angelos, Chicago, Augusta, New York City, Arkansas, Connecticut, Dallas, San Francisco, and Topeka just to name a few places!

We conducted a round table to reivew all the strategies that Hearst Newspapers, LocalEdge, and our Partners are implementing, using etc.

We discussed what is working, what isn’t, and how we integrate Google, Yahoo!, Bing, Facebook, Twitter, etc. etc. into our Digital packages for successful ACTIONS, and not just clicks.

It is clear that we have setup the future with our SSO platform, and all the great adjustments we have made to our products.

All of our Web Site builds are now Responsive! We have also added many advanced features to our Standard product line, making us very hard to compete agaisnt.

Our SEO – Search Engine Optimization continues to rank among the best, sticking to the correct way to setup our SEO tactics.

Our SEM – Search Engine Parketing, or PPC – Pay Per Click continues to lead.

Our Web Sites – will replace the cookie cutter, and will work correctly on the 7k plus devices in 2014!

This is going to be a great year, and look forward to our Internet Marketing Services off-site review.

Best,
Jeff Folckemer
SVP of Hearst Newspapers
President of Media Services, and Affiliates

Posted September 5, 2013

I am constantly amazed on how dynamic the Internet is and how it changes all facets of marketing, and advertising. I have watched companies fall because they focused on what worked for the last 30 years. Now, companies can fall if they focus on what worked 24 months ago! The Business community continues to gain knowledge. They are getting smarter, and realize that having a online presence combined with some of the traditional ways of advertising works best! Selecting the right company to partner with becomes even more critical. As we look to find large partners to resell our Digital Marketing Product suite, selecting the right partners is now a key component to expansion. Look forward to international expansion in the company months!

Posted April 15, 2013

As we enter the second quarter of 2013, it is time to build a Responsive Website. Why you ask? The search engines, Google, Yahoo!, Bing all are looking at the main domain, and looking to see if your site is setup to be Mobile friendly. Many of the Web Site Grader’s don’t recognize Responsive, or the Java code that looks to re-direct, so be careful on how you use them. Remember, you want to build your Website for all types of screens. Also, with Responsive, you can setup your Mobile site with specific code that has the right call to action. Finally, all of your hits, visits etc. are not shared. This is really important as your site is graded by the Search Engines.

Posted April 4, 2013

TRIBUNE PUBLISHING SIGNS PARTNERSHIP WITH HEARST’S LOCALEDGE™ TO PROVIDE BUSINESSES WITH DIGITAL MARKETING SERVICES

 Chicago, IL and Buffalo, NY (April 3, 2013) – Tribune Publishing announced today that it is launching a new venture that will equip local, small to medium sized businesses with online marketing tools to attract new customers and generate additional revenue.  The new digital initiative is being launched through a partnership with Hearst’s digital marketing company – LocalEdge.

Through the partnership, Tribune Publishing will provide local businesses with a full suite of digital marketing services designed to enhance online presence and target consumers while building loyalty through digital engagement with customers.  Tribune publications that will be selling the LocalEdge services to interested companies include the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun, Sun Sentinel (South Florida), Orlando Sentinel, Hartford Courant, The Morning Call and Daily Press.

“Adding these online marketing solutions to Tribune’s current portfolio of products and services will allow us to offer effective marketing solutions to prospective clients in our markets” said Tony Hunter, CEO of Tribune Publishing.

The services to be offered include website design and hosting for desktop and mobile devices, online video, search engine marketing, search engine optimization, online reputation management, social media marketing and email/SMS text messaging services.  A unique customer-facing dashboard will allow businesses to monitor their entire online campaign and measure the effectiveness of their marketing efforts through performance-based reporting.  Local businesses will be featured more prominently and found more easily when and where customers are looking for them.

Mark Aldam, President of Hearst Newspapers Division said, “We are delighted to have the Tribune Newspapers as a partner in this venture.  We trust this affiliation around the LocalEdge products and services will be equally as beneficial as many of our other collaborations have been for both Hearst and Tribune.”

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 About Tribune Company

TRIBUNE is one of the country’s leading multimedia companies, operating businesses in broadcasting, publishing and interactive.  The company’s broadcasting group owns or operates 23 television stations, WGN America on national cable, the national multicast network Antenna TV and Chicago’s WGN-AM.  In publishing, Tribune’s leading daily newspapers include the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun, Sun Sentinel (South Florida), Orlando Sentinel, Hartford Courant, The Morning Call and Daily Press.  Popular news and information websites complement Tribune’s print and broadcast properties and extend the company’s nationwide audience.  Additional information about the Tribune Company can be found at Tribune.com or by following @TribuneCompany

About LocalEdge

LocalEdge, A Hearst Media Services Company is A Division of the Hearst Corporation.  A premier multi-media company leading the transition to web-based advertising for business, multi-media organizations and agencies, the organization has been in business for over 40 years and services customers nationwide.

Through the development of proprietary technology and partnerships with major search engines, social network sites and other leading tech-focused companies, LocalEdge offers a full line of digital marketing products that help its customers and business partners reach and interact with today’s consumer.

Through a single-sign-on customer dashboard, LocalEdge enables customers to access digital products and proof-of-performance reporting within Internet marketing campaigns.  Management tools allow the customer to preview, update and customize content as well as review and monitor analytics.  Additional information about LocalEdge can be found atLocalEdgeMedia.com or by following @LocalEdge.

Posted January 30, 2013

Content is what makes Digital Marketing Services work. If you take a look at a good online presence you always see good content. If you don’t, they will drop fast. Keeping the content fresh is also key.

When you think about online presence, it is a combination of visibility, correct tags, good pictures, video, and a holistic advertising strategy. Always start with a good Website, Mobile Site, SEO strategy, Landing Page to present backlinks with a good call to action, and don’t forget to promote with SEM, SMM, and traditional marketing methods.

It is the overall strategy with solid tactics that win over the long haul.

Posted January 14, 2013

Well the question that continues to arise….do I need to be on Facebook, or Google+? The answer………….Both! Facebook has been dominating in the Social Media Management space, but never count Google out. Google now has over 500M users. While Facebook has over 1B, Google+ is moving very fast in a very short time period.

The difference is the habits that have been formed. Facebook has users that must use the Facebook mobile app all the time. Google+ is still in launch mode. If Google+ was first, I am sure this would be reversed. This goes to show being first to market, sometimes has its benefits – USERs that are loyal.

Now, move the calendar 5 years forward, who knows who will own this space, and be profitable enough to stay in this space.

Google however is integrated into Gmail, Search, Maps, Android etc. etc. and Google Now. This is a company that understands that having integration, single point of launch, product cross pollination, mobile integeration is setting the value of the products and services for the future.

Posted November 10, 2012

Google, Yahoo!, Bing and Ask. You need them all, and you need to be on all of them. Why you ask? If you think about SEM, and SEO, and how people search – it is apparent that everyone searches differently. Some use Google exclusively, some use Bing, Yahoo!, or Ask. Some switch depending on how they feel for the day. Hence, you need them all. Now, when you think about what keywords that people use to search, that is different as well. Some will type one word searches, some will type two, three or full sentences. This makes Google, Yahoo!, Bing and Ask very important pieces of your Internet Marketing strategy.

When a Search is done, the results vary. Some will click the ad at the top and right – SEM or Search Engine Marketing. Others will only click the Natural/Organic listings – SEO or Search Engine Optimization.

When you advertise on the Internet, you want to cast a wide net to reach the largest possible audience. This is why you need to be on all search engines. Well, at the least Google, Yahoo, Bing and Ask. One and Done – is not the answer when you want to gain maximum market views. To reach local advertisers is important to have a holistic approach. Having a solid Digital Marketing Strategy, along with multiple products and services is how you get there.

Posted September 20, 2012

As the Digital age progresses, it is crystal clear, that Print Yellow Pages is on final life support. Hibu and YELL are following the fate of Supermedia, Dex, and AT&T yellow pages. Hibu/YELL will be bankrupt. Supermedia and DEX and delaying the second round of bankruptcy as long as possible by combining and reducung expenses. AT&T sold off what would be a disaster for the larger wireless company. Clearly a sign of the times for yellow page companies.

LocalEdge still has print yellow pages, but continues on its 10 year plan from 2005 to 2015 – get out of print! Our Digital Marketing Services unit continues to grow, and our Print continues to shrink.

We continue to plan on shutting down print, and expanding our Digital Teams. This transformation is very difficult. It means making decisions on people, markets, products, strategies that affect lives from folks you keep, and folks you don’t keep.

Since we have planned for this transformation, it helps! Still, letting folks know that Digital is the future, and knowing they can’t transition is the hardest thing.

It is even harder when you are hiring Digital skilled folks with Google, Yahoo, Bing, Video, SEO, SEM, SMM etc. experience, and have to let the veteran print folks that can’t make the transition go.

The Internet has changed many things. Many opportunities, and many challenges. We will continue to strive to be out of the print business, while we continue to transform. This is the difference between LocalEdge and the others. The others will continue to have mass lay-offs, and record debt etc.

LocalEdge will continue to exist, prosper, and lead!

Best to all, and remember – train for the future, remember the past.

Regards,
Jeff Folckemer