According to the SMB internet marketing survey 2014 , 70% of local SMBs have a monthly budget of less that $500 for online marketing. Even at this restrictive budget, “hyperlocal” media can deliver great value by offering services aimed at creating visibility and brand recognition. As influential media outlets serving the local community, hyperlocal websites can become a driving force in local commerce, by creating innovative marketing solutions for local businesses.
Although “hyperlocal” is a huge opportunity, introducing innovative marketing solutions for local businesses can be a challenge for small publishers as they lack in-house technology expertise to support these services. BlackMonk solves this problem. BlackMonk enables publishers to not only manage web content but also provide a full range of monetization features like business directory, classifieds, sponsored content, coupon marketing etc.
Here’s a look at how BlackMonk helps hyperlocal websites create better internet marketing opportunities for local SMBs:
A merchant friendly approach to coupon marketing
Coupon marketing has been around for a while, and it is a tried-and-tested strategy to increase sales. However, coupon marketing platforms like Groupon are unsustainable for most local businesses, because of ridiculously high commission rates and unfavorable terms of service.
BlackMonk enables publishers to create coupon marketing campaigns where merchants can run “DEALS” on flexible terms. The system makes it incredibly easy for merchants to set up deal campaigns with full control over voucher inventory, discount rate and commission rate (publisher’s share). This novel approach to coupon marketing has proved beneficial to both publishers and merchants.
On-demand content sponsorship
As a source of local news, hyperlocal websites provide a lucrative space for content promotion. BlackMonk allows publishers to provide on-demand content sponsorship opportunity through a self-service system where a business owner can sign up and submit paid content in form of press release, paid reviews or advertorials.
Content sponsorship service gives local businesses an opportunity to establish their domain expertise and create strong branding.
Business directory that offers more benefits
Popular directory sites like Yelp are top contenders for SMB marketing dollars, as most local businesses spend their entire marketing budget on directory listings. Since small businesses have a modest marketing budget, they can only buy low-end services from the likes of Yelp.
Hyperlocal websites are in a position to offer local businesses significantly more value, for less. Infact, they can provide benefits which are at par with premium level services of top directory websites.
BlackMonk enables hyperlocal publishers to offer different levels of directory listings (Free, Sponsored Oor Featured) to local businesses, with an option for creating personalized listing page featuring product catalog, downloadable collaterals, user reviews and more. Business owners can even edit and manage their own listing without the intervention of the publisher.
Event promotion & real estate ads
In addition to above services, hyperlocal websites can provide high impact promotional services to event organizers and create an exclusive ad space for people interested in buying oe selling property. In order to enable publishers to provide these services, BlackMonk provides ‘out of the box’ support for event listings (Free, Sponsored Oor Featured) and real estate ads.
BlackMonk gives hyperlocal publishers the opportunity to play an influential role in local commerce, and in the process create profitable revenue channels to ensure sustainability. It also allows publishers to diversify their content range, by providing a convenient way for publishing attractions guide, movie showtimes guide, photo/video gallery, contests, sweepstakes and more.
Native mobile apps
BlackMonk’s Android app allows publishers to deliver a fabulous user experience on all Android-powered mobile phones; users can now look-up information on the go.
Hyperlocal websites will see an increase user engagement, as the app provides a convenient way for users to comment on articles and review business listings and events.