Posts Tagged ‘IYP’

Study: Americans Spend 23% of Internet Time on Social Networking Sites and Blogs

Monday, August 2, 2010

Whether it’s AT&T’s local social search experiment buzz.com, SuperMedia’s digital coupon Twitter channels, or Yellow Pages Group’s early integration of new Facebook social plug-ins, our industry has made major strides this year in introducing new ways for businesses to reach consumers in the social media space.

And today, we have further indication that our full-speed-ahead approach to embracing opportunities in social media will pay off in the long run.

New research from Nielsen shows that Americans spend 23% of their time online on social networking sites and blogs, up from 16% just a year ago. Now, social networking is the single most popular online activity, ahead of online gaming, e-mail, portals and instant messaging.

And not only are consumers spending more time in social media, they’re taking advantage of new tools designed to increase business and product visibility and drive sales.

The Facebook social plug-ins that YPG, and now other IYP providers, have integrated into their listings (i.e. the “Like” button) are attracting praise from businesses for increasing visits from Facebook to e-commerce sites, according to today’s Wall Street Journal.

Facebook said that each of the the 350,000 websites that have implemented the free social plug-ins so far have seen an average one- to five-fold increase in referral traffic from Facebook. Gilt Group, the online clothing store, experienced a 50% leap in sales from Facebook the week after introducing the “Like” button onto its sales pages. That’s pretty good indication that social media can deliver the business results we’ve all hoped it would.

As an industry, we’ve done a great job getting on the social media bandwagon. Now we have the opportunity to deliver real results for our clients. What new services and synergies can we offer that turn social networkers into local business buyers?

More People Go Mobile for Local

Thursday, July 29, 2010

One trend that we’ve all been watching closely is mobile, and today we’re releasing new data from comScore that shows more people are turning to their mobile devices to access business information.

This is good news for Internet Yellow Pages because it essentially helps extend the reach of those resources for consumers, and helps advertisers access a desirable demographic – the ready-to-buy shopper.

comScore found that the number of mobile subscribers accessing business directories on a mobile phone increased 14 percent year-over-year to 17.3 million users in March 2010, extending the reach of Internet Yellow Pages beyond just the personal computer. This increase outpaces the10 percent growth in the number of mobile media users who browsed the mobile web, used applications or downloaded content during the same time period.

Additionally, the number of people accessing business directories on a mobile device at least once per week increased more than 16 percent year-over-year to nearly five million in March 2010.

Much of this growth is due to the rapid growth in smartphone users combined with the adoption of 3G technology, better search offerings, and higher advertiser engagement.

As I point out in a column on Search Engine Land this morning, this high growth illustrates that as more consumers use mobile devices to search and access content, they are continuing to rely on Yellow Pages’ convenient and reliable business listings to help them find local businesses on-the-go.

It’s also great news for advertisers. In addition to the benefits of advertising with IYPs to attract those searching for business information on their personal computers, local businesses are receiving added value in online listings being accessible to a growing number of mobile users.

Other interesting mobile-related data points from the study include:

  • The mobile browser was the most common access method for users, with 10.8 million subscribers in March 2010 and 21 percent year-over-year growth.
  • Apps are hot, with 42 percent year-over-year growth in the number of mobile subscribers using apps to access business directories.
  • Mobile unlocks a desirable user for the advertise: 58% are 34 or younger; over half have a household income in excess of $75,000; and they are three and half times more likely as the average mobile media user to access women’s magazine content, health information, real estate listings, and job listings via their mobile devices.

IYP Local Search on Personal Computers

comScore also found that local searches on personal computers saw year-over-year growth.  Searches on IYPs and portal sites increased 4 percent to 444 million in March 2010, or 5.3 billion annually—indicating that more consumers are coming to rely on Yellow Pages when searching from their computer.

Additionally, the report showed that people access IYPs and local online sites in a number of ways:

  • Traffic to IYPs from web search sites increased three points from the first quarter of 2009 to the first quarter of 2010, to 44 percent of visits.
  • Direct traffic also increased over the same time period, up four points to 32 percent.
  • Referrals from affiliate sites (advertisements, e-mail marketing, and other partner sites) decreased six points to 25 percent.

comScore’s data illustrate how in today’s changing media environment, IYPs are attracting growing audiences online and via mobile—giving advertisers new opportunities to reach consumers wherever they are.

This is a testament to our industry’s strong emphasis on building our digital and mobile platforms this past year. Whether its rebranding our companies, creating new iPhone, iPad, and Google Android apps, or launching new IYP concepts like buzz.com, Yellow Pages companies are building on decades of experience to deliver the highest-quality directories for advertisers and consumers to connect.

More Than 1,700 Students Participate in YPA’s Yellow Pages Advertising Challenge

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

While Yellow Pages continue to be one of the most widely-used mediums for local business search, the industry’s offerings are rarely discussed in college and university marketing and advertising classes— leaving the next generation of advertisers and marketers in the dark about the benefits of multi-platform local advertising.

Five years ago, the Yellow Pages Association launched a competition designed to raise awareness for print and Internet Yellow Pages advertising among college and university advertising and marketing students, as well as increase the likelihood that instructors would cover Yellow Pages in their course materials.

The Yellow Pages Advertising Challenge asks undergraduate students at two and four year U.S. and Canadian colleges and universities to create print and Internet Yellow Pages advertising for a local business. The program provides valuable “real-world” experience for students just starting their academic careers in curricula including marketing, advertising, and graphic design. It also increases their exposure to Yellow Pages, their overall positive experiences and/or attitude towards its offerings, as well as their perceptions about the role Yellow Pages plays in the advertising mix.

In addition to having their work showcased on the YPA Academic website, and competition winners and faculty sponsors share nearly $10,000 in total award prizes.

We are delighted to announce that the 2009-2010 academic year competition was the most successful ever with approximately 1,050 combined entries from more than 1,700 students across nearly 150 schools.

This year’s top three winners include:

First Place: Ashley Rich
Faculty Sponsor: Carole Mauge-Lewis
School: Kennesaw State University

View entry here.

Second Place: Kelsey Kohler
Roland Rueppell
Faculty Sponsor: Victoria Muschek
School: San Diego State University

View entry here.

Third Place: Joseph Byer, Jr.
Faculty Sponsor: Vivek Madupu
School: Missouri Western State University

View entry here.

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AT&T Interactive and Citysearch Announce Distribution Agreement

Friday, May 7, 2010

This week, we’ve discussed the importance of multi-platform advertising for local businesses seeking to reach ready-to-buy consumers wherever they are. Now, I’m eager to highlight the significance of inter-platform advertising opportunities as a means of generating additional visibility and leads.

On the digital front, our industry is not only expanding the reach of Internet Yellow Pages directories, we’re also partnering with a variety of popular local search sites including Yelp and Citysearch in an effort to provide our clients with more ways to reach online consumers.

This week, AT&T Interactive—which recently rebranded its flagship YP.COM and added new features to its YPMobile app—became the latest Yellow Pages company to announce a new distribution agreement with Citysearch. The move comes just a month after Dex One and Citysearch entered into a similar partnership.

Under the new arrangement, sponsored listings from YP.COM will have the opportunity to appear on CityGrid, Citysearch’s extensive local content and advertising network. The new agreement builds on an existing relationship between Citysearch and AT&T Interactive where Citysearch listings, user reviews and editorial content have the opportunity to be displayed on YP.COM.

Additionally, YP.COM advertisers will have the opportunity to place ads alongside content on Citysearch or other CityGrid publisher web properties, and CityGrid reseller partners will have access to distribute advertising across YP.COM.

This open arrangement benefits local businesses by allowing them to explore new, exciting online advertising opportunities— all within their established Yellow Pages marketing strategies.

For more information, read the full AT&T Interactive and Citysearch release here.

Sensis: ‘Traditional and Digital Together is Far More Powerful Than Digital Alone’

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Earlier this week, I shared an article I wrote for Search Engine Land that talked about the importance of multi-platform advertising in generating new leads for local businesses.

Today, I’m happy to see that our Australian member Sensis—which I cited in the article—also shares my view that generating local business visibility across various channels increases the opportunity for meaningful results.

In a post on the company’s blog, Speaking Sensis, Wayne Aspland discusses two recent studies which show that despite common perceptions, both digital and traditional media usage are up recently. As he explains, increases in online usage have not come at the expense of traditional usage – instead, digital and traditional usage have grown together.

Given this data, Wayne argues that “we should put an end to these phony media wars and start realizing we’re all in this together…because, clearly, that’s what consumers (and advertisers) want.”

I couldn’t agree more. Here’s the link to Wayne’s post.

The Importance of Multi-Platform Advertising

Monday, May 3, 2010

In my Search Engine Land article posted today, I talk about how in today’s digital world, the most successful local search campaigns are those that create integration and leverage audiences across technologies.

Just last week, we blogged about findings from a recent Sensis “free pizza” campaign which found that when consumers need to locate local business information, the majority turn to Yellow Pages’ various offerings.

That’s why a multi-platform approach, championed by our industry, makes the most sense for local business advertising. It realizes the benefits and opportunities available across all forms of media, whether they’re in print, online or on mobile.

To read my full Search Engine Land article, click here.

Sensis ‘Free Pizza’ Campaign Shows: When it Comes to Finding New Business, Yellow Pages are Still 70% of the Pie

Monday, April 26, 2010

Over the past few months, we’ve released new data that reinforces the ongoing value of print and Internet Yellow Pages to local businesses. Now a new advertising campaign by Sensis, an Australian Yellow Pages provider, shows that when put to the test, our findings match up closely with the real world.

As The Australian reports, Sensis opened a new Melbourne restaurant, the Hidden Pizza Restaurant, in the basement of an alleyway earlier this month. Flyers distributed in the local area, as well as the restaurant’s website and Facebook page, offered a free pizza to consumers who could find its location during a two week period. The restaurant’s blog told consumers to, “just look us up the way you would any other business.”

Data collected during the campaign, which concluded April 25, found that of the 8,000 consumers who located the restaurant, 70% found their way via a paid Internet Yellow Pages listing, through paid search engine listings that Sensis placed, or from a print Yellow Pages directory (which were delivered shortly before the campaign began). Blogs, social media, and other forms of word-of-mouth accounted for the other 30% of customers, the company said.

We’re very encouraged by the results of this campaign, which we believe illustrate the strength of Yellow Pages’ multi-platform advertising model in driving real leads for local businesses.

For more, read the full The Australian article here.

YPA Data is eMarketer Stat of the Day

Monday, April 26, 2010

eMarketer, a leading digital research and trend analysis company, featured data from our Local Media Tracking Study yesterday in its popular e-newsletter and on its website.

The story, entitled “Finding Consumers Who are Ready To Buy,” discussed our research, conducted by Burke, which found that eight out of ten print and Internet Yellow Pages searches in 2009 were conducted by people who said they were ready to buy. The article also talked about additional data which found that two-third of respondents said print and Internet Yellow Pages were more trustworthy and accurate than search engines for finding local business information.

We’re excited to see that eMarketer published another statistic from our research as their Facebook “Stat of the Day” on Friday. It’s nice to see that the online community is taking note of our data and the continued role that Yellow Pages platforms provide in generating leads in our rapidly changing media environment.

Mediatel’s Kimberli Lewis Highlights Female Purchasing Power at the Women’s Networking Receptio

Monday, April 19, 2010

The ladies of the YPA really look forward to the women’s networking reception each year at the annual conference, and this year’s gathering did not disappoint. Not only did the guests have a great occasion to network and hear updates from the women helping the industry to transform – but they were also treated to a fun and unexpected history lesson from Kimberli Lewis of Mediatel on the evolution of women’s purchasing power from the 18260 to present.

According to Lewis, women went from having no voice in their family’s day-to-day purchases the late 1800s to more voice in the 1920s during World War to becoming chief decision officers today – accounting for 85% of purchases.

“In Europe, our data shows us that three out of four women make the purchase in most households and 75% of those purchase are being made online,” she added.

Lewis argued that understanding the female approach to purchasing is a key to innovation.

“IYPs that integrate social media and brand-specific search functionality are essential,” she said. “They tap into two key insights: First, that 75% of online shoppers seek suggestions when making a purchase and second, that the average family mentions brands 90 times per week. This is the way consumers are operating and we need to adapt to that.”

Take notice, ladies: To better tap into the female purchasing cycle, Lewis suggested that more should be done to increase female executive leadership in the industry.

“If you want to know whether we are transforming, you have to ask who is leading the innovations in IYP platforms. Women make 85% of purchasing decisions – but represent only 18.2% of the CEOs in the industry globally.” An eye-opening number.

Special thanks are also owed to Lisa Mahoney of Century Interactive who led the annual raffle. A key prize among this year’s give-aways was a new iPad tablet… perfect to stay on top of the latest mobile innovations.