YP Taps Verve To Help Expand National-To-Local Ad Reach

The move allows YP to expand reach beyond our owned and operated channels, YP CEO Jared Rowe says.

YP has signed up Verve as a display ad distribution partner as the company, which bills itself as “The Real Yellow Pages” looks to expand its reach and focus to serving national brands that want to target local consumers.

The deal comes a week after the rollout of ypWebsite Pro, which helps local brands create central internet hub with a mobile-responsive, SEO-ready website.

This agreement between YP and Verve is actually an expansion of an earlier partnership to power YP’s mobile display for SMBs by extending similar capabilities to national brands.

“Our expanded relationship is exciting for Verve as it enables us to showcase the power of our Verve Activate audiences which are designed to leverage the unique power of location sourced directly from the mobile device,” Verve CMO Julie Bernard told GeoMarketing.

“As you know, at Verve, we are all about Movement Science; we are helping the industry advance beyond the pioneering real time geo-fence towards embracing more robust location intelligence gleaned from the observation of movement patterns over time,” Bernard said. “This longitudinal view of consumer movement tells us so much more about their needs, interests, hobbies, activities – powerful clues that are incorporated into audience development and targeting to ultimately deliver positive campaign performance.”

Connecting Search Intent To Display

YP’s pitch to brands is that consumers arrive at YP’s sites by searching for a specific local product or service.

The company backs that up by citing conducted by comScore on behalf of YP, 74 percent of YP users make a purchase after searching, and those searchers spend an average of 34 percent more per purchase than all searchers.

Therefore, serving YP’s display ads to those “intent-focused” consumers would seem to be particularly valuable — especially outside of the confines of the websites within YP’s own network. Working with Verve will spread those display ads to placements within the apps and publisher sites that Verve is aligned with.

“With millions of users, YP is committed to connecting local businesses with consumers wherever they are, on whatever device or medium they’re using,” said YP CEO Jared Rowe. “We rely on industry leading partners like Verve to help us expand our reach beyond our owned and operated channels. This agreement allows us to focus on our large consumer audience while delivering even more value to our clients.”

“With this partnership with YP, the advantages of the location data insights that are core to our proprietary audience segments are augmented with YP’s first-party search intent data – the combination of which is quite distinctive for their national clients,” Bernard added.

“We continue to see partners express interest in maximizing campaign effectiveness through the appropriate matching of our respective unique data assets,” she said, “and this scenario is one example of this industry trend, taking Verve’s location expertise and combining it with YP’s search intent signals.”

The Value Of Websites — And Banners

Although the emergence of connected intelligence through voice-activated digital assistants like Siri and Alexa may soon call the utility of a brand’s website into question, the fact remains that brands need a central hub for the vital business information consumers need, Stu MacFarlane, Executive Vice President of Products and Marketing at YP, noted in an interview with GeoMarketing last week.

“Websites are foundational to connecting local businesses with consumers, and a strong SEO strategy is critical to delivering traffic to their sites,” MacFarlane said.

From Verve’s vantage point, the idea of display ads being “static” or leading to banner blindness, particularly within the mobile space, ignores the fact that they still reach and influence millions of consumers.

“Mobile marketing is far more than a banner displayed on a phone,” said Verve CEO and President Tom Kenney. “It is a powerful opportunity for brands and publishers to deliver extremely relevant and localized messages in contextual moments that resonate with consumers. We look forward to combining the Verve location-powered insights and targeting model with YP’s exceptionally large user base to deliver superior consumer experiences and tangible business results for advertisers.”