Convergence Connects with Local Search: Spot Runner

I was talkin’ with an old media buddy about the CES show, and our sentiments were echoed in this Sunday’s “Media Frenzy” column in the NYTimes Business section, with this opening line: “Convergence is back…” In fact, it may be more accurate to say it’s finally here. And I’m talking about more than iPod video and related video sales by Google and others.

On another front, those who work in search engine marketing and search engine advertising (like Google AdWords and Yahoo Search advertising) know that local search is hot. Local businesses (from pizza parlors to car repair shops) are benefitting more from local search engine marketing than from those old fashioned and expensive yellow pages ads.
Case in point, a friend’s petsitting business is getting 9 leads from free search engine rankings compared to 1 from a $300/month yellow pages display ad that she’s just discontinued. For those who want to learn more, this is the best e-book I’ve seen on the subject of Local Search. >

What was most kewl in the article referenced above, IMHO, was Spot Runner. This web-based application (“software as service”) uses pre-produced TV spot “templates” and computerized insertion techniques to help small local businesses get on cable TV as painlessly and inexpensively as possible. Impressive stuff. And there’s an opportunity there for video producers as well. At least I think so. I need to get into that service in more detail. Comments and experiences welcome…