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Top 10 Articles on LSA Insider from Q1 2015

From news and commentary to stats and studies, we cover a variety of topics here on LSA Insider. Based on article views, shares and comments, here are the top ten most popular posts from Q1 2015:

1. Pay-per-Call: Google Introduces “Call-Only” AdWords Units (February 20, 2015)
“Recognizing the importance of calls to local and many national merchants, Google is allowing AdWords advertisers now to bid on ‘Call Only’ ads. This was discovered by Philly Marketing Labs. Here’s the official blog post. Advertisers can use a Google tracking number or their own (as in call extensions). Previously Google required a landing page or website to enable a click-through. These ads only provide an option to call a business.”

2. 91 Entries to Ad to Action Awards, 20 Finalists (March 26, 2015)
“Today we are excited to announce the finalists for the second annual Ad to Action Awards.  We received 91 entries, an over 50% increase compared to 2014, and the 20 finalists demonstrated the greatest potential for driving local consumer engagement and best addressed current market needs. This week the judging panel – made up of 18 companies including Twitter, Foursquare, Yahoo, MapQuest, xAd and more – completed their evaluation of these products and solutions . . . Entries were evaluated on ability to facilitate consumer actions (calls, clicks, store visits, etc.), innovation, ROI potential, ease of implementation and more. Scores were calculated on a 10-point scale.”

3. SMB Surveys Show Digital Marketing Satisfaction Yet High Churn Persists (February 18, 2015)
“. . . The question arises: given high digital satisfaction levels from SMBs, why does churn remain such a persistent and widespread problem? One would expect satisfied SMBs to stay with vendors that are presumably delivering the results they’re seeing. It’s tough to reconcile high satisfaction numbers with the churn figures in the market. The 2013 survey I conducted revealed that low pricing was the single most important variable to SMBs when it comes to selecting a marketing services vendor. This finding might hold some insight into churn: price sensitivity and aggressive competition among vendors in some cases might in part be luring SMBs to switch providers.”

4. Top 10 Client Questions Faced by Digital Sales Teams (March 18, 2015)
“Digital marketing expertise from one marketer to another varies dramatically. That same variation exists among SMBs and national brands both separately and in comparison to each other. For that reason, selling digital solutions and products has required sales teams to be more dynamic. Client discussions and sales calls have in some ways evolved into training sessions . . . The following collection of questions comes from a large LSA member and are fairly representative of issues being addressed and fielded by the company’s sales and product teams.”

5. Why Bad Listings Never Die (January 21, 2015)
“. . . Incorrect listings are one of those annoying things that keeps people up at night, creates uncomfortable phone calls from executives and angry clients, fills your inbox with emails from upset managers, and keeps Tylenol in business.  However, this headache can be addressed.  We just needed a face for the enemy. The problem of bad listings exists for several reasons and we have explored the biggest of those: old phone books and outdated websites.”

6. Study: SMB Growth Depends on New Advertising & Marketing Strategies (March 10, 2015)
LSA Insider: “SMBs are feeling more confident in their future and for the first time in seven years, the majority of SMBs are pointing to a specific growth strategy. That strategy is new advertising and marketing initiatives. According to a recent poll conducted by the National Small Business Association (NSBA), 72% of SMBs are somewhat or very confident in the financial future of their companies and 51% of SMBs pointed to new advertising and marketing strategies as the primary growth strategy to be used in the next 12 months.”

7. The Best Metrics for Quantifying Mobile Campaign Success (January 8, 2015)
“As consumers have migrated from desktop to mobile, the industry has struggled with identifying the best metrics to measure and communicate mobile campaign success. Click Through Rate (CTR) has long been the standard in desktop measurement. But on mobile devices, up to 40% of clicks may be accidental, largely driven by touchscreens. Additionally, Click to Call (CTC) volume has been in steady decline for years. In order to confront this need to find a new and meaningful measurement for mobile, xAd commissioned Nielsen to design the Mobile Ad Measurement Study.”

8. UBL and Local Site Submit Parent Merge to Battle Yext Globally (March 16, 2015)
“Roughly seven years ago before UBL launched I had a conversation with its founders about their idea for a single entry point online to distribute local business data to all the relevant consumer directories and touchpoints . . . Against that history and industry backdrop, UBL and the parent of Local Site Submit, Advice Interactive Group, are announcing a merger this morning. The terms were not disclosed and the name of the new combined entity hasn’t been definitively determined. Bryant and Advice Interactive CEO Bernadette Coleman told me that the combination brings together unmatched technology assets and a new capacity to serve a global market.”

9. How to Clean Up Your Local Listings (March 12, 2015)
“. . . Cleaning up your local listings may seem like a time-consuming project, but I promise you it’s worth the effort. Incorrect online listings negatively affect your business in a variety of ways, including online marketing tactics such as SEO and PPC. I’ll tell you how to start taking care of your local listings now, and improve your overall online presence.”

10. Yelp, MapQuest, Yext, ReachLocal and 37 Others Join LSA in 2014 (January 5, 2015)
“2014 was a great year for the Local Search Association membership team as we brought on 41 new members from both well-known and up-and-coming companies in the ‘local’ space. This is one of the largest influxes of new members we have seen in recent years, and I am particularly excited about the caliber and diversity of these organizations. From improving the membership benefits structure, to bringing Greg Sterling on board and investing in better insights, this membership growth can be attributed to a variety of initiatives and efforts.”

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