Selling Digital Marketing Services: A partnership between Borrell Associates and Local Media Association

July 31-Aug. 1 | Gleacher Center, Chicago

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Wednesday, July 31, 2019

8:00 a.m.-8:30 a.m.: Breakfast sandwiches and coffee with Sponsors and Exhibitors. Sponsored by Guarantee Digital.

Peter Newton


Kyle Hebenstreit


Monica Boyer-Blanchard


Gary Smith


8:30 a.m.-9:30 a.m.: Welcome and Keynote Presentation GNI Data Lab: Businesses that dominate their space, in any industry, win with data. The Google News Initiative recently launched the GNI Data Lab with Local Media Association and Deloitte to help local media companies assess their data prowess and create a playbook to better use and monetize consumer data. What’s a successful culture look like? What skills do you need? What’s the right tech and data set? All are key ingredients to a winning formula. The lab includes six partners: The Seattle Times, Meredith TV, The Philadelphia Inquirer, NBC Universal Owned Television Stations, Lee Enterprises/St Louis Post-Dispatch and Tampa Bay Times. In this session we’ll hear how two of them are upping their game in the Data Lab, growing digital marketing revenue and beyond, as well as high-level takeaways from Deloitte and LMA.

Presenters: Kyle Hebenstreit, manager, strategy and analytics, Deloitte; Peter Newton, managing director, Accelerate Local; Monica Boyer-Blanchard, senior advertising manager/digital, Bay Times; Gary Smith, vice president of advertising, The Seattle Times.

Jason Holmes


9:30 a.m.-10:10 a.m.: Best Practices — Key Vertical Areas: SEO. Web design/development. Apps. Reputation services. Social media management. Each could be a business unit with sales, fulfillment and support. How do you prioritize digital marketing services, decide which to staff or outsource, and ensure clients get appropriate value for their money? And how do you prioritize these services for specific vertical business categories, such as automotive or real estate? This session will provide strategies to get your services portfolio aligned.

Presenter: Jason Holmes, founder and CEO, ThriveFuel

Perry Evans


10:10 a.m.-10:40 a.m.: Local Search and SEO Transformation: The local search ecosystem is undergoing fundamental transformation as Google rebuilds how it collects and applies content and SMB interaction in maps and local search. The implications across local SEO, search marketing, paid advertising, and business presence are profound. ThriveHive has chosen to aggressively embrace this shift and rebuild its entire ecosystem into an integrated subscription SaaS covering guided marketing and advertising. In this discussion, Perry Evans explains what ThriveHive has done and shares lessons learned along the way.

Presenter: Perry Evans, president, ThriveHive

10:40 a.m.-10:55 a.m.: Break with R&D Partners

10:55 a.m.-11 a.m.: Platinum Sponsor Spotlight: LOCALiQ.

Julia Campbell


Michael Koenigs


11 a.m.-11:30 a.m.: Best Practices — Branded Content: It blurs the line between advertising and marketing service, but branded content at its best can establish clients as subject-matter experts and high-quality brands in their fields. Learn how branded content as a service applies in each stage of the marketing funnel and how the Branded Content Project is designed to help facilitate additional growth, engagement and success for more publishers of all shapes and sizes. Testing is now underway with 7 alpha partners including ABC’s Localish brand, which has opened up additional opportunities to connect with new audiences and new advertisers.

Presenters: Michael Koenigs, executive producer, ABC Owned Television Stations / Localish, Julia Campbell, LMA/LMC Branded Content Project lead

Daryl Hively


Jonathan Muzio


Sandra DeFilipp


11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.: Best Practices — Prospecting: A sales pipeline is always dry at the end if you can’t feed new prospects in at the beginning. This session will explore techniques for finding great client prospects and initiating a business relationship with them.

Presenters: Jonathan Muzio, vice president of business Development, AdCellerant; Daryl Hively, founder and CEO, Guarantee Digital; Sandra DeFilipp, partner manager, AffinityX

12:15 p.m.-1:30 p.m.: Lunch on your own

Corey Elliott


1:30 p.m.-2:15 p.m.: Best Practices – The Voice of the Customer:  Best practices in digital marketing and services mean little if the point of view of the local business is not taken into account. Whatever you are selling to clients is often just one piece of a very complex puzzle they need to put together. Rest assured, they are spending money on digital services – but they are giving you clues to what they really need, if you listen. What are they saying? Corey Elliott will go over recent findings from Borrell’s Local Advertiser Survey as well as share projections of local digital service expenditures. You’ll want to write this down!

Presenter: Corey Elliott, executive vice president, local market intelligence at Borrell Associates

Rebecca Capparelli


Jack Zavoral


2:15 p.m.-2:45 p.m.: Best Practices — Bundling: If “bundle” or “package” is a bad word in your sales organization, maybe it’s time to rethink. Call it what you will, but combining digital marketing services with online and offline advertising campaigns can make the sum greater than the parts.

Presenter: Rebecca Capparelli, vice president of promotions, GateHouse Media; moderated by Jack Zavoral, Local Media Association.

2:45 p.m.-3 p.m.: Break with R&D Partners

3 p.m.-3:05 p.m.: Platinum Sponsor Spotlight: TapClicks.

Shannon Allen


John Hoeft


3:05 p.m.-3:45 p.m.: Best Practices — Client Reporting / Attribution: Are you sharing performance metrics that make the client look good, or those that make you look good? What’s the state of the art in demonstrating attribution from digital marketing services (e.g., showing clients your services brought leads in the door)? This session focuses on metrics clients really need to know and understand to demonstrate the value you provide.

Presenters: Shannon Allen, vice president/digital sales, Federated Media and John Hoeft, former general manager, TruMeasure 

3:45 p.m.-3:50 p.m.: Platinum Sponsor Spotlight: Supplemental Oxygen Digital.

Christina Rice


Jessica Romaniuk


Alice Patel


Peter Schwarzbach


3:50 p.m.-4:35 p.m.: Advertiser Panel:  Hear from client and agency personnel who share their expectations and experiences with digital marketing services overall, and local media client sales and service in particular. Get a sense of what it feels like to be on the other side of the table when you pitch and support SEO, reputation services, digital development and the like.

Moderator: Christina Rice, co-founder, Supplemental Oxygen Digital, Jessica Romaniuk, director of media,Two by Four Advertising, Alice Patel, senior director of communications, Clearcover, Inc. and Peter Schwarzbach, Owner, Vin Chicago.

4:35 p.m.-4:45 p.m.: Wrap-Up: We will quickly summarize the big learnings of the day, and preview Thursday sessions.

5:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m.: Networking Happy Hour at Lizzie McNeill’s Irish Pub sponsored by Dream Local Digital

Thursday, August 1

8:00 a.m.-8:30 a.m.: Breakfast sandwiches and coffee with R&D Partners. Sponsored by AffinityX

Shawn Riegsecker


8:30 a.m.-9:30 a.m.: Keynote: Agency/Provider Perspective on Digital Marketing Services: Shawn Riegsecker, founder and CEO of Chicago-based Centro, knows the local media industry, and its forays into selling and reselling digital marketing services, extremely well. How do marketing services dovetail with the advanced programmatic advertising and data services that are specialties of companies such as Centro? And how can a focus on automation and optimization make complex product lines easier to fulfill? You’ll learn from Shawn’s extensive experience at the forefront of digital services in this keynote presentation.

Presenter: Shawn Riegsecker, founder and CEO, Centro.

Kelly Wallace


9:30 a.m.-10:15 a.m.: Best Practices — Pricing: Competing on price alone can feel like a race to the bottom, sapping profitability and service. But premium pricing for top-tier service can make it tough to compete. This session provides usable strategies for revenue managers trying to balance price approaches for optimal revenue and profitability. We will present different, non-traditional and more outcome-oriented pricing structures as part of a larger collaborative discussion of premium pricing and client transparency.

Presenter: Kelly Wallace, director, digital and account development, Beasley Media Group

10:15 a.m.-10:30 a.m.: Break with R&D Partners

10:30 a.m.-10:35 a.m.: Platinum Sponsor Spotlight: Modulist.

Matt Bartels


10:35 a.m.-11:30 a.m.: Best Practices — Staffing, Compensation, Incentives: How do local media find and retain great talent? Structure sales and fulfillment teams for success? Pay for performance and growth while preserving sufficient profitability? And do the answers to these questions apply differently in small markets vs. large? This session will provide an overview of staffing approaches that have proven out over time.

Presenter: Matt Bartels, principal, Alexander Group.

Jim Brown


Nancy Lane


11:30 a.m.-11:45 a.m.: Wrap-Up: A quick “to-go bag” of key takeaways and action steps learned from the conference, with Nancy Lane, president, LMA, and Jim Brown, president, Borrell Associates.

11:45 a.m.: Conference Ends

Meet our sponsors!


No refunds will be given after July 1.

The Gleacher Center

Chicago, IL


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