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YP Taking a Selective Sales Approach With New Mobile Display Offering

YP has introduced a new mobile display advertising product for SMBs called ypDisplay. This new offering joins a family of other digital marketing services and search-related products, which have been introduced in the past several months. I spoke to YP CTO Darren Clark about the announcement and the thinking behind it.

Clark said a number of very interesting things during our discussion. Among them, the company isn’t offering the new display product to all its advertisers, nor will it in all likelihood. YP has long had a digital display business for national advertisers. The new ypDisplay is a modified version of that program. However it includes a template-based approach to ad creative (AdReady is the partner) with some customization.

Clark told me that this product is for selected categories and selected advertisers at the upper end of the SMB segment and who already are doing other forms of digital marketing. He laid out an informal hierarchy of marketing: presence, directional media and awareness in that order. The new ypDisplay falls into the latter category and is intended for more sophisticated marketers in a number of specific categories.

Those categories include retail, dining, entertainment and even automotive. Clark said that mobile display tended to “work” better in those categories than in home services or professional services categories that were more research based or less likely to be fulfilled “on the go.” Accordingly Clark said that YP will generally not try and sell ypDisplay in those “less-mobile” categories unless the advertiser specifically requests it.

Inventory for ypDisplay is sourced from YP’s owned and operated properties and from exchanges via programmatic channels.

Moving into mobile display is almost a necessity for YP. That’s because there’s much more display inventory available compared with mobile search. And with increasingly sophisticated audience and geo-targeting — audiences are typically defined using location history — mobile display advertising can be quite effective and even approaches search in terms of reaching engaged and receptive users.

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