AdReady couldn’t do it. Google and Yahoo! haven’t been able to do it. And Facebook hasn’t done it either. I’m referring to dramatically simplifying the process of display ad creation to reach the small business market. However, PaperG’s PlaceLocal it appears has achieved that lofty goal.
PlaceLocal was the subject of a profile in the NY Times on Friday:
New software called PlaceLocal builds display ads automatically, scouring the Internet for references to a neighborhood restaurant, a grocery store or another local business. Then it combines the photographs it finds with reviews, customer comments and other text into a customized online ad for the business . . .
Then PlaceLocal takes over, gathering basics like telephone number, hours of business, maps and directions, and adding positive comments extracted from local blogs. Samples of ads may be seen at www.paperg.com, the PaperG Web site.
PaperG’s program is up and running on 32 local media Web sites, including Time Out New York and Time Out Chicago, and on 29 network TV affiliates owned or managed by Hearst Television, said PaperG’s chief operating officer, Roger Lee. The company has also signed up the McClatchy newspaper chain and will soon be on some of its Web sites, he said.
PlaceLocal/PaperG is undoubtedly part of the mix in the Gannett Local offering as well.
And because CPM inventory is cheaper than paid search I would expect more local online marketing platforms to incorporate this with or without the knowledge of local businesses. It could for example be a part of a traffic arbitrage strategy or sold directly to SMBs as a product or part of a product bundle.