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For eBusiness & Channel Strategy Professionals

Is Hyperlocal Hype Or Happening?

What US Online Consumers Want From "Local" Media

January 27, 2009


  • By Sarah Rotman Epps,
  • Elizabeth Stark
  • with Carrie Johnson,
  • Kate van Geldern

Why Read This Report

Will going "hyperlocal"— serving the information needs of local neighborhoods or communities —offer a viable future for media companies online? That's a question many seek to answer as local TV and radio stations, newspapers, and telecom providers, as well as online giants like Google and Yahoo! make a play for the hyperlocal space. Web sites like and newspaper companies like Gannett are staking their future on hyperlocal, but Forrester's data suggests that some basic assumptions about hyperlocal need to be reexamined. To start with, Forrester data shows that more consumers care about what's happening in their country than what's happening in their neighborhood. In addition, there's a disconnect between the sources consumers rely on for local news and information versus those they rely on for business listings. This is a huge problem for local TV stations and newspapers, which bear the cost of content production without reaping the benefit of classified ad sales. Companies that are poised to dominate the hyperlocal space will have three key assets: 1) low-cost, community-generated content; 2) an agile human sales force paired with smart ad sales automation; and 3) mastery of the mobile channel, which drives local offline interactions.

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Table of Contents

  • Media Companies Are Staking Their Future On Hyperlocal
  • A Deeper Problem: Newspapers Lack Relevance For Local Communities

  • What It Takes To Build A Business On Hyperlocal
  • Related Research Documents