The Star announced yesterday the creation of impressLOCAL, a new online marketing company that will cater to small local businesses without many resources for marketing. The new venture will launch in July with 18 new employees.
Clients of impressLOCAL will be able to establish a presence on the web, in both computer- and mobile-friendly formats. They’ll promote their businesses through Facebook, gain greater recognition from search engines, track their online reputations, advertise online and track incoming calls.
“We see this as a huge new business,” said director of interactive sales Mark Maassen.
It’s not the first newspaper to get into the online marketing services game. McClatchy-owned Fort Worth Star Telegram has a similar company. The Chicago Tribune introduced its 435 Digital social media/SEO agency a few years ago.
It looks like the idea may have originated in Charlotte, where Steve Gunn, director of strategic products and audience development at The Charlotte Observer, appears to have set up a Facebook page for impressLOCAL back in March, but, as you can see, it’s pretty much a test site.