Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Google Maps Does It Again

Google Maps

Google is simply impressive. They have upgraded their maps feature combining a satellite image with indications of road names, directions, etc.

Every Google map has three buttons "Map," "Satellite," and "Hybrid." This makes it very easy to switch between views.

Bravo Google!

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

MediaPost Publications - Keeping Up With... the Yellow Pages? - 07/19/2005

MediaPost Publications - Keeping Up With... the Yellow Pages? - 07/19/2005

David Berkowitz, the Son of Search, has interesting insights on the local search guide compiled by the Yellow Pages Association.

From where I sit (VP of Internet at TransWestern Publishing, a division of Yellow Book), there are a few points that deserve attention.

1. Local advertisers don't BUY advertising, they are SOLD advertising that delivers LEADS. Our US sales organization includes well over 6,000 professionals who help local businesses get leads.

Google, Yahoo, and the search engines have shown no desire to invest in the local sales channel. Without SALESPEOPLE, there will be very few SALES.

2. The ultimate product that Yellow Pages publishers deliver is LEADS. Today, about $15 billion is spent in print YP for those leads, and a couple of hundred million is spent in IYPs and local search for those leads. That is shifting, but it is still very early in the game.

3. Advertisers will eventually follow usage, but ONLY if someone will help them do it. The YP sales force is *almost* perfectly positioned to do this. As the tools for selling online leads improve, and the business model improves, the YP publishers will invest more heavily.

TODAY, print YP offers an unparalleled quality and quantity of leads for the price. Local search will begin making serious inroads over the next five years.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Superpages.com Redesign

MediaPost Publications Home of MediaDailyNews, MEDIA and OMMA Magazines

SuperPages.com, the Internet Yellow Pages arm of Verizon has undergone a much-needed redesign.

It is much cleaner, but I still have issues with their decisions of placing advertisers in certain categories. For example, when I search for a Steak restaurant in Los Angeles, CA, the first 8 listings returned are not steak restaurants in Los Angeles. They are either restaurants in other cities such as Santa Barbara, Lancaster or Chino Hills, or they are caterers or rewards programs.

Verizon would never allow these ads to appear in the wrong category in their print directories (at least I would hope that they wouldn't).

So why would they allow this in their Internet directory?

I am a very big fan of most Internet Yellow Pages directories as excellent vehicles for targeted advertising. However, this bothers me. Verizon has made strides and has improved, but this needs improvement.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Yellow Book USA Acquires TransWestern Publishing

Yellow Book USA Acquires TransWestern Publishing

It's official.

Having been a TransWestern Publishing employee for the past six years, I can attest that Yellow Book has acquired a truly remarkable company.

I believe that Yellow Book's consumer focus combined with TransWestern's production prowess will make for a formidable national independent publisher.

In 1993, a group of TransWestern management headed by Rick Puente purchased the money-losing operation from US West for something on the order of $34 million. The company sold to Yellow Book for $1.58 billion.

I feel deeply honored to have played a part in this American success story, and very, very excited about the future.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Businesses get refunds for ads in Yellow Pages

The Advocate: Businesses get refunds for ads in Yellow Pages

Wow, I can't imagine that SBC could have handled this any worse if they tired.

First, they mislead the advertisers by telling them that the small community directories were being replaced with a county-wide directory.

Hey, this kind of thing happens all the time to better serve the needs of shoppers. No biggie. Some advertisers P.O.'s, but what the hey?

Right after the big book hits the streets, SBC announces that they ARE going to keep the little books after all.

Problem it that many of the advertisers wouldn't have wasted their money in the big book, but it was their only option from the telephone company.

Big lawsuit. SBC loses, and the advertisers are due refunds.

Oh, but if the advertisers INCREASED their ads because they TRUSTED what the SBC rep said, then they were screwed out of their refund.

SBC says that they mailed notices to 11,000 advertisers that they may be entitled to a refund.

Gee, when they were selling advertising, they sent representatives to go door-to-door, not mailing solicitations.

Doesn't seem right to me. Just my opinion.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Paris Hilton TV Ad for German YP GoYellow.de

Paris On Fire Again In New Sexy TV Commercial - News America Now

Tim Manners, editor of Cool News sent me the link to this sexy Paris Hilton TV ad for an IYP in Germany.

I don't speak German, so I had to watch it about a hundred times.

Enjoy. and then subscribe to Cool News

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Want the back cover of the Cambodia Yellow pages for about $1,650?

eBay item 5594068066 (Ends Jul-06-05 19:30:00 PDT) - Advertise on CAMBODIA YELLOW PAGES Back Cover!

Something tells me that the sales manager ought to be looking for a new job.

Lady Liberty Fireworks

Lady Liberty Fireworks Ken-Zoe.net

Happy Independence Day everyone. If you missed the fireworks, you can enjoy your own at this site. Very cool.