Some conversation on Web 2.0 in San Francisco popped up in my news alert, shedding light on how one top media executive views the outlook for Yellow Pages in the digital space.
In an interview, AOL’s new CEO Tim Armstrong said he believes that Internet Yellow Pages “will become more important in the future than less.”
“I think in the future the [online] Yellow Pages business, if that’s what we’re calling it – how local businesses market themselves – will be exponentially better than it is today.”
Armstrong noted that the current Internet Yellow Pages experience is much like the early days of web search, when consumers had shifted their habits much faster than advertisers. He added that a variety of small companies were working on interesting solutions to further adapt Yellow Pages for the web.
Armstrong is no stranger to the local online experience. He founded Patch.com, a Web site that “digitizes towns” – putting everything from police, fire, and school information, to business and event listings online.
Currently, Patch is available for 12 towns in New Jersey and Connecticut, with 11 new towns planned for launch in the next three months. The site has started to sell local advertising through banner ads, classifieds, and other models.
Here’s Armstrong’s full interview. The Yellow Pages mention is at 21:30.