Now this is how you take location-based content and package it in such a way as to make yourself–and your shareholders in this case–a pile of dough. The Knot, a media company that caters to couples planning a wedding, has launched 75 localized sites from Ann Arbor to West Virginia in the United States. By the end of the year, The Knot plans to have more than 200 such sites.
Already an established company, founded in 1996 by husband and wife team David Liu and Carley Roney, The Knot has taken the idea of hyperlocal content and applied it to a niche–a $70 billion niche that’s perfect for a hyperlocal application. So while news outlets struggle with the same concept, The Knot has virtually guaranteed itself advertising from wedding-related businesses in all 75 cities. Moreover, the costs of doing this are minimal as each site takes generalized wedding planning content from The Knot’s main site, syndicates it to each local site, and then adds in localized content and business listings for specific cities. Makes sense doesn’t it? People tend to marry near their homes and tend to purchase the services of local wedding vendors as well. So, like any smart business, The Knot is going to them rather than acting as its own destination. I guarantee you The Knot will be the online wedding platform that grabs the local ad dollars.
I’m convinced that ‘hyperlocal’ is the way to do things on the web. Not only does it appeal to local advertisers that might not bother to shell out advertising dollars on a general page that wouldn’t convert to actual sales, but it also naturally meshes with the growing popularity of web-enabled smartphones. That could be The Knot’s next move.