I was speaking with a hyper-local expert recently and we were talking about the “noise” in this space – he was essentially saying that Bizyhood will have a challenging time getting the attention of small businesses because there are already so many sites that have directory listings and advertising – so how were we going to differentiate ourselves?
The thing is, Bizyhood is not focused on being a directory or an advertising site. Yes – we have a directory of businesses on our site – consumers can search (and find) businesses of all types on Bizyhood – and if the owner of a business hasn’t claimed their page, we want that consumer to tell us they’d like to interact with that business on our site – we’ll get them signed up. Bizyhood is not going after millions of consumers – we’re going after the thousands of small businesses that want to thrill their customers online because they know this is the way people will find and interact with them going forward.
Yes – Bizyhood will have advertising. It’s important that we promote the small businesses that pay for the advanced features of our site. And we can do it in a targeted way that we believe will generate much better results than generic ads on “high eyeball” sites like Yelp or Angie’s List.
But advertising is not what Bizyhood is about. Bizyhood is about giving that small business the tools they need so that they can build and cultivate their online community – where they can manage and interact with current customers, and the word-of-mouth marketing these customers can provide will connect them with prospective customers in a much more targeted and measured way than traditional advertising.
Traditional advertising is not dead. Far from it. But as a small business, why jump from site to site paying money for a few months for ads to “hope” they will bring you new business? Why not take more control over your own online brand, send your current customers to that location, then advertise THAT as your most influential identity? This is Bizyhood’s mission.
When a small business builds a community and that community is active, the business grows. Bizyhood wants to assist small companies in growing their local community every single month. This will provide longer lasting value than random advertising and reviews you get on typical sites today. Targeted advertising and conversational feedback are the new way to reach and connect with your audience.