RAM: Playing Search

Geary Search may be a new division of Geary Interactive, but the six-year-old San Diego-based firm has been using search, including geo-targeting, for years. "We were one of the pioneers that figured out how to do local search," says Andreas Roell, president, Geary Interactive. The company, founded in 1999 with the Sahara Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas as its inaugural client, now has Trump International on its roster, and has since branched out into education and entertainment clients. Still, Roell likes playing the smart percentages and the return on investment payoff that search delivers.

For one education client, Geary came to the table with a cost-per-lead that was double that of its rivals. And yet, a strategy involving individual campus micro-sites, and a combination of local and national search-engine marketing and optimization executions, produced superior results. "We generated a 12 percent lead-to-student conversion, while others were driving 2 to 3 percent," Roell says, adding, "It's not just driving initial goals, but ultimate results."

Local search will have its day when it ventures off the desktop, he argues. "It will reach its full potential if it expands to less browser-oriented formats like cell phones and car navigational activities."

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