Ad Advantage to Local Online Media

Ad Advantage to Local Online Media

According to a new report by the Online Publishers Association, local media sites hold a distinct advantage when it comes to delivering results for advertisers. The study finds that consumers trust advertising on local newspaper, magazine and television Websites, and are very likely to take action after viewing ads on these sites.

Newspapers rank first, with 46% of consumers taking action, including making a purchase, going to a store, conducting research, after viewing a local ad, as compared to 37% of consumers acting after viewing a local ad on a portal.

Percent of Consumers Taking Action after Viewing Local Ads:

  • Local Newspaper Site: 46%
  • Local Television Site: 44%
  • Local Magazine Site: 42%
  • User Review Site: 39%
  • Portal: 37%

OPA president Pam Horan, says "... local media sites deliver concrete results for local advertisers...  consumers are more likely to act on the ads they see on local TV, newspaper and magazine sites... "

Consumers on these sites are desirable advertising targets, concludes the report. Local magazine, newspaper and TV sites attract significant percentages (48%, 40% and 39%, respectively) of consumers who spent more than $500 online in the past twelve months. Thirty-seven percent of portal visitors and 34% of the overall online population spend this amount in a year.

Consumers express significant faith in advertising on local content sites. Newspaper sites lead the way, with 56% of visitors expressing strong trust of the advertising found on these sites, followed by local TV station sites and portals.

The OPA report finds that satisfaction with local content is high overall, and portals and media sites each have strengths. Portals lead in satisfaction among all local content visitors, followed by local newspaper and TV station sites.

Local media sites have a significant lead over portals:

  • 79% of frequent visitors are satisfied with local TV sites
  • 77% are satisfied with local newspaper sites
  • 65% of frequent visitors to portals are satisfied

Portals, Newspaper and TV Sites Lead in Satisfaction with Local Coverage(% Local Content Users)


% Satisfied with Local Community Coverage

User review sites


Local magazine sites


City guides


Classifieds sites


Online yellow pages


Local TV station sites


Local newspaper sites




Source: Online Publishers Association, August 2008

An important common trait of all local online content sites is an ability to attract high concentrations of influencers, says OPA:

  • 10% of consumers are considered "Influentials" according to research done by GfK Roper
  • 29% percent of local online content site users say they are the first person people come to for recommendations about local restaurants and bars
  • 26% of local online users say they are the first person people come to for local shopping recommendations
  • 23% for local entertainment recommendations
  • 23% for local consumer electronics recommendations

Source: Online Publishers Association, August 2008

Local Sites Relied on for Dining, Grocery Store, Financial Services and Department Store Information

Local Sites Relied On

% Local Content Users

Local attorneys/ legal services


Local furniture/ appliance dealers


Local home/ real estate services


Local auto dealers/ repairs/ services


Local consumer elec. Stores


Local doctors/ health facilities


Local department stores


Local banks/ financial services


Local grocery stores


Local dining/ restaurants/ bars


Source: Online Publishers Association, August 2008

"Local content sites of all types play an important role in serving the local community. But this report shows that local media sites have a very real advantage when it comes to delivering results for advertisers," Horan said.

The report is available from OPA here.  

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