Citysearch has shown new energy and creativity in the recent past, with its redesign, new verticals and integration of Facebook Connect, which makes the site more “social.” Now it has teamed up with MySpace for “MySpace Local,” which puts Citysearch data into a local destination hosted on MySpace . . . that also integrates all the social contacts and features of MySpace.
TechCruch has a preview of the beta product. Beyond MySpace users, the intention is to have MySpace Local to be a destination that can be accessed and discovered through search as well.
As Michael Arrington points out in his post, this creates potentially huge amounts of new geotargeted ad inventory for MySpace, with a rev share to Citysearch one assumes. It also represents more distribution for Citysearch merchants and advertisers as part of the latter’s network strategy. All of this will of course translate into mobile, a big battle ground between MySpace and Facebook.
It’s one facet of a larger “local” strategy for MySpace, which includes SMB advertising. I spoke about all this with former Yahoo! search marketing exec. Warren Kay, who’s now at Fox and spearheadin local and SMB initiatives on the advertiser side.
In a way we could see this as analogous to the Oodle marketplace on MySpace or Facebook. And it will be interesting to see whether and how Facebook responds. Facebook also has a big opportunity in local that hasn’t been developed.
More after I get a “look under the hood.”