The job of a CEO is never easy -- but it's been particularly challenging over the last few weeks. Travel has picked up significantly as we get more and more traction. Our core business -- helping local newspapers and new media sell relevant advertising systems to small and medium businesses -- is booming. We've had a few soft launches this summer with more in the works right now.
Overall I think that many local media companies and newspapers are beginning to realize that the SMB segment is indeed a moneymaker. It just requires a few things to work well: product, price, value for the consumer & local business owner, and probably most importantly -- sales team engagement & readiness. In that sense, our engagements with local media have been a TRUE partnership -- requiring and depending on both us and the partner to execute.
Anyway, I've had a few customer/partner visits and a lot of engagement with local business owners around the country over the last month or two. I won't use this forum to share all the feedback from them, but I can tell you that the advances of the last few years (self-serve, social media, group purchasing, etc.) have really empowered business owners. I don't get the "fear, uncertainty, and doubt" I got when we first started talking to local businesses back in 2004!