TV Meteorologist Jeff Berardelli developed an interactive radar weather map, Zoom Radar, which allows readers to zoom in and out on zip code areas, cities and even streets, in real time where they live, or where they are going, even down to a golf course.
He has been partnering with local media sites to promote and monetize the weather map, claiming a six minute dwell time and 40% increase in traffic from other maps. He as about 48 media partners so far.
“The map allows the user to be in total control of the experience and zoom all the way down to their house” says Berardelli.
“The Local radar feature is very Hi-Res and updates rapidly, an essential for interactive radar. ”
The company retains a few meteorologists and computer programmers, while Berardelli still works as the weatherman at the CBS affiliate in Miami, whose web site was first to use the software, and sell a "mid-four figure" sponsorship. The site also offers severe weather warnings, buoy and ship reports and storm tracking.
Basically anyone with a web site can use the software, but many media sites have signed up. In addition to CBS Miami, Berardelli has signed up CBS TV Miami, 1010Wins Radio NYC, WKYC-TV Cleveland, WHEC Rochester NY, CourierJournal Newspaper Louisville.
He says that the interactive technology has doubles and triples amount of time readers spend on a weather map. The site is hosted, but local media can place it using a URL and framing code. Media sites that allow small ads embedded in the map use it for free, other wise there is a licensing fee or revenue share.
The author, Alisa Cromer is publisher of a variety of online media, including LocalMediaInsider and MediaExecsTech, developed while on a fellowship with the Reynolds Journalism Institute and which has evolved into a leading marketing company for media technology start-ups. In 2017 she founded Worldstir.com, an online magazine, to showcases perspectives from around the world on new topic each month, translated from and to the top five languages in the world.