Time to Double Down on Vertro & Shop ALOT on Cyber Monday
While we firmly believe that investors who buy at today’s prices ($4.50 – $5.00) have a very good chance to double their money over the next six – twelve months (and maybe much sooner), the double down we are referring to is not actually a stock purchase. Given the extraordinary exposure to new investors Vertro has received over the past five days, we feel that it is time for the GrooveVC community to “pull out all the stops” so to speak. Vertro is now on the radar screens of hundreds (maybe thousands) of potential new investors who will be watching over the next few weeks and months to see how the company performs. This could not come at a better time, as we believe that the company will achieve a sequential gain of more than 100% over the RECORD earnings they achieved in Q3. We believe that Q4 will be the “break out” quarter where Vertro’s significant operating leverage will be showcased for the first time. As strong as the Q3 results were, management made it very clear early in the quarter that they saw an opportunity to invest heavily in customer acquisition during Q3, which would build up the toolbar / home page user base prior to the key holiday retail season when internet seaching and shopping are usually at a peak.
So the table has been set and now it is time for the Groove VC community to step up to the plate. Now is the time when we can have a huge impact on Vertro’s fourth quarter if we all “double down” – get two more people to join our ranks and teach them how to search and shop online using ALOT. Help each one to see how they could realistically double their money over the next year by investing in Vertro at today’s prices if they will download the appbar or use the home page each time they need to Google something (or shop online) and get two people they know to do the same thing. Our goal is for each existing Groove VC participant to bring in two more people who can bring in two friends of their own between now and Cyber Monday (November 29, 2010) and for all Groove participants to commit to shopping all Christmas purchases using ALOT on Cyber Monday.
How does one “shop their purchases” using ALOT? Step one in shopping your purchases is using the regular search box, the one you use to search the internet which is on the left side of the toolbar/appbar or in the upper center of the home page. This search box is where you will enter the name of the product you intend to buy and execute a search. For instance, if you are looking to buy a “laptop computer” or “online gift cards” then you would simply type that into the search box and click the search button. The Google powered search will generate a list of sponsored links and web page results. The sponsored links at the top are essentially the companies/services that are willing to pay the most to show you their best deal for what you searched for. They are not ranked in any kind of order that would let you know who has the best deal though, so you will want to try each site to see who offers the best prices and/or overall best terms (sometimes the lowest price will have additional handling/shipping terms that make it not the best deal). Regardless which one you decide to purchase from, Vertro earns revenue when you click to visit each site. In the laptop computer example, recent bids to offer the top ranked link were over $6.00, so Vertro could actually make close to $5.00 (via revenue share with Google) when you click that link to visit the laptop merchant’s site and Vertro earns revenue for each of the other sponsored links that you visit too. Thus, if you shop it thoroughly and check the prices/terms at six or seven of the top ranked sites, Vertro could earn $15 – $20 regardless which merchant you ultimately buy it from. This works the same way for any other product you may have on your Christmas list.
Step two in shopping your purchases is simply to take the best deal you found using the search box and then shop it using the ALOT “shopping” tab that can be found on the Alot Home Page just above the search box between the “news” and “videos” search feature. When you enter an item in the box and click the “shopping” tab, it will search that item and bring back the most relevant results from Amazon, Ebay and Shopping.com in a three column format that allows for easy comparisons. This will allow you to see if any of the three top online merchants can beat the deals offered through the main search function described above. If one of the deals found here beats the other prices and you actually purchase it, Vertro makes a small % of each sale.
One of the most interesting things we discovered when researching the Cyber Monday Shop ALOT promotion was that Vertro usually made significantly more revenue from just the searching that is done in step one. While it is still a good thing and revenue producer to buy something through the Alot shopping tab, the company does better when you use the regular search feature because they get paid for each site you visit regardless which one you buy from and the amounts each individual merchant pays to have you visit their site is often more than the percentage that Vertro makes when you make a purchase through the shopping link. Thus, the company and the consumer are best served when you use both (search thoroughly) and then just buy from whomever offers the best deal.
Our viral campaign to get as many new users as possible by Cyber Monday and for all GrooveVC participants to shop all of their Christmas purchases through Alot on Cyber Monday gives us exactly three weeks to prepare to make the biggest impact on Vertro’s fourth quarter results that is possible. The reason we are focusing on Cyber Monday as the culmination of our efforts is twofold:
1) Last year the company had their biggest single revenue earning day in their short history on Cyber Monday and they issued a press release to tell shareholders about it. If we are able to set a new single day revenue record, we believe that the company would issue another press release to let shareholders know about it. This which gives us more favorable press during this period where many new investors are looking at the Vertro story and allows us to enjoy the closest thing to “instant gratification” we are likely to get for our efforts.
2) The timing of this focused effort helps the Groove to bulk up the number of virally acquired appbar/home page users just in time for the period that is usually the peak for annual web shopping (and very strong for search traffic), the 2 – 3 weeks following Thanksgiving, which gives us an opportunity to make a meaningful impact on the fourth quarter numbers.
Thus, Cyber Monday is where we will make our stand. Small investors and Vertro shareholders unite! Bring two new ALOT users into the fold before Cyber Monday and more importantly, commit to shop all Christmas and other end of year purchases using ALOT on Cyber Monday to help the company achieve a new record revenue day and bring more investor attention to the Vertro/ALOT story.
Buy VTRO / Download the AppBar / Bring 2 Friends http://www.alot.com
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