SMX Local & Mobile, Yahoo! Local Sneak Peek

  • Posted July 22nd, 2008 at 9:00 am by Yahoo! Search
  • Categories: Local

Danny Sullivan’s SMX Local & Mobile event starts Thursday, July 24, in San Francisco. We’re peppering the show with a keynote from Yahoo! Local and a panel presentation from Yahoo! Connected Life.

Kicking off the festivities, Frazier Miller, Yahoo! Local’s General Manager, will focus on Yahoo!’s vision for weaving local information into users’ primary Web starting points in his keynote address on Thursday at 9:15 a.m.

Following, Michael Bayle, Yahoo! Connected Life’s General Manager of Global Monetization, will participate in the “Mobile Advertising Opportunities & Tactics” panel on Friday at 9 a.m.

And to give you a better sense of what you can expect from Frazier, the Yahoo! Search Blog team asked him some questions to give you a sneak peek.

Yahoo! Search Blog team

Yahoo! Search Blog (YSB): Can you give us a sneak peek into what you plan to talk about at the show?

Frazier Miller (FM): For the last several years, we’ve spoken about how expansive the local search market opportunity is, so I’m going to lay out how much progress we’ve made in fully realizing the market potential and where the industry is at large. I’ll walk through which usage cases have caught fire with people, how we’re doing in terms of monetizing on PC and mobile devices, and — probably most interesting — what it’s going to take to get to the next level.

YSB: What are you most focused on for Yahoo! Local today?

FM: Over the last 12 months, we’ve focused heavily on making the site more social in eliciting user feedback and comments. We’ve introduced features that allow users to connect with each other by making comments on ratings/reviews and added the ability to subscribe to favorite reviewers. Also, earlier this month, we announced updates to Upcoming that include a new interface and greatly increased number of hyper-local events on the site to make it easier for new users to find things to do while maintaining the community aspects that regular users know and love.

YSB: What kind of innovation do you see happening in local search today? What are some of your favorite up-and-coming sites?

FM: I’m trying to be “greener” these days, so some of the sites that have really caught my eye fall into that category. Walkscore.com is a cool site that analyzes how well your community is laid-out for walking, rather than driving. Greenopia is one that rates businesses and services based on their environmental responsibility.

There’s a ton happening in the Mobile space too. Fire eagle is a project sponsored by Yahoo!, which enables users to register their location and share it with a number of other apps and services. There’s going to be a lot happening on this front in the coming months.

YSB: What about the local search market do you think offers solid potential?

FM: I can’t overstate the upcoming importance and growth of local search enough. For example, by 2010, mobile phones are expected to outpace PCs by three times and local info is the most sought after on mobile devices. We have a perfect storm brewing between user demand, advertising desire for targeting and mobile evolution that’s going to make this an incredibly rich arena for the next few years.

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