I want to start this post out with a bit of a caveat. I haven’t personally tried the directory application on a local keyword domain name yet, so this is mostly just a suggestion and not based on my experience. I do use the WhyPark directory app on ActingCoach.com and have at least one paying advertiser.
I think geo keyword .com domain names like PhiladelphiaPlumbers.com, SanFranciscoElecticians.com, and BostonLocksmiths.com are strong domain names. If the profession has many competing companies in that city, it could be a big opportunity for development. The city should also be large enough that many people are looking for a company in this field in the particular city (for example, RonkonkomaPlumbers.com might be a bit limited).
One way to manage development at a more minimal cost is to use WhyPark’s directory app. I would recommend having the company create a custom layout for you to your specs (around $200 for that I think) or hire someone to do it for you on eLance. As much as some people may dispute how a site looks, I am one who believes it’s important to have a good looking, updated website to get advertisers onboard. Additionally, I recommend a custom logo as well.
I would also use a copywriter (like TextBroker) to write a number of helpful articles related to the domain name’s content. This will at least get the site off the ground to start, and it will not only make the site look more populated to potential advertisers, it will also help with Google indexing and search engine traffic.
Once the site is launched, use your Google Webmaster Tools and Analytics accounts to track visits and search queries. As traffic grows, you should reach out to potential advertisers on the phone and via email. Although some people will probably be willing to sign up if they find your site, it will be much quicker to call or email them first. This way, you know they know about your site.
Having traffic is important because many potential advertisers will want to know they are getting value for their advertising dollar. I would charge anywhere between $5-20/month, depending on your location and the competition.
It’s easy to set up the WhyPark directory app, and it can be a time saving, cost-effective way to build out a directory website on a geodomain name. It’s something I will try when I have the right name.