As Yellow jettisons the long-running ‘walking fingers’ logo, CEO Darren Linton has laid out some ambitious plans for the future of the company.
According to Yellow’s Business Confidence Survey of small- to medium-sized businesses (SMEs) in New Zealand, 34 percent of business owners regarded digital marketing as an essential area to upskill in, placing it only behind marketing and IT and technology (both on 41 percent).
Back in the day, the Yellow Pages ruled. Business names were sometimes based on where they would end up in the book (that’s why there are so many accommodation options starting with A and the Krasilovky Brothers of New York took that to extremes with their long-running listing battle). But for many consumers the online realm is a much more efficient way of finding businesses and Google has taken its toll on the print-based directories and forced them to find new revenue streams. So why are there still so many online business directories in operation?
Whybin\TBWA has been through a fair amount of change since Todd McLeay took over in early 2013, both in terms of clients and staff. But, much to the agency’s relief, it has retained its biggest client after ANZ re-signed its trans-Tasman contract. PLUS: Yellow also picks the agency for a brand refresh.
True opened its doors in 2011 after a few senior protagonists from .99 felt the need to go it alone and break away from the nurturing bosom of The Clemenger Group. Like any new business, the first few years were tough going and it focused on growth rather than profit, but it’s gaining momentum, it’s working with big brands like Air New Zealand and Vodafone, it’s moving into areas outside traditional advertising and it currently employs 25 staff. Managing director Matt Dickinson spills the beans on its philosophy.
Directories group Yellow’s first foray into augmented reality in its app is all about entertainment, but it has plans to get serious with the technology as part of its transition from print to digital.
ANZ, Countdown, Briscoes and Yellow have gone public about withdrawing advertising from RadioLive after an interview by the station’s hosts Willie Jackson and John Tamihere with a caller ‘Amy’ who said she was friends with an alleged victim of the Roastbusters gang.
The White Pages in Auckland now has less than five percent of the circulation it had a year ago, thanks to the introduction of a trial opt in system in March. This year instead of sending every Auckland household a copy of the giant white tome by default, the public had to specifically request a copy.
Yellow Group has dropped DDB / RAPP Tribal and appointed True as its new agency, according to the directories company. Yellow says it is finalising one more project with RAPP, which will be completed by the end of the month, after which the relationship will end.
When Localist launched as an Auckland-only print directory, plenty of questions were raised about the rationale behind the creation of a new product that went head to head with a dominant player in what many saw as a dying industry. 18 months on and it’s still here and, confounding the sceptics, it’s still growing. But as of next week Localist will be very different and 100 percent digital.
She’s been behind some of the country’s most creative—and creatively awarded—marketing campaigns, but after four years with the embattled Yellow Pages Group, business transformation director and former marketing director Kellie Nathan has decided it’s time for a change.
Unlimited hunts for a new helmsman, MediaWorks plays some more news and current affairs swapsies with TVNZ, Rodney Hide sharpens his pen for the NBR, Grownups.co.nz finds some independence, EMC names new marketing director, Village PR adds to the flock, and Hamilton company Torpedo7 hops into bed with an Aussie suitor.
DraftFCB says farewell (kind of) to another senior creative, Yellow brings in two foreign imports in its quest to go digital, Localist undergoes a restructure, Ambient Advertising adds one to the flock, Colmar Brunton welcomes a newbie, and Datamine kicks off 2012 with a triple treat.
Yellow has just pinned its new digital, hyperlocal colours to the mast with the launch of Yellow Local. As has been the case for around three years, Colenso was responsible for coming up with the creative and wooing the users, while Rapp/Tribal, which has been working with Yellow for almost two years, took care of the direct and digital grunt work. But there’s been a new, albeit rather small development in Yellow’s advertising mix, after DDB was handed some project work.
Aside from the number of awards its advertising has won, it’s been a fairly sorry tale for Yellow in the past few years. But, last year, in the face of some horrific finances, Yellow stumped up with a $40 million investment in the business, more sales people and a strategy that focused more heavily on digital offerings. Well, it’s just launched a new digital directory called YellowLocal.co.nz. And it’s heading down a similar hyperlocal path to that of its soon-to-launch NZ Post-run competitor Localist.
Colenso has followed up its impressive Axis haul with four ‘in-book’ accolades at the D&AD awards, while Saatchi & Saatchi and DDB NZ scored one each. But, unlike last year, there will be no pencils handed out to Kiwi agencies as no local work was deemed good enough to make it through to the nomination stage.
As the entry video shows, Yellow and Colenso believed you could get anything done with Yellow. But in a world dominated by Google, they had to say it loudly. And, like the award-winning Yellow Treehouse before it, Yellow Chocolate did just that. Whether this campaign achieved business results is debateable (Yellow could also be in line for the Creative Accounting Business of the Year), but that’s an argument for another day. In keeping with the creative Axis vibe, what is clear is that Colenso came up with a big, complicated idea, the Yellow powers that be were brave enough to run with it and the pair brought the many disparate parts together in the form of a chocolate bar.
In the Direct Response section, Colenso took gold for Yellow Chocolate and a silver for ‘A Rubbish Idea’, while Special Group also took gold for ‘Orcon Business Banner’. And in the Direct Campaign, Colenso came home with both awards, a gold for Yellow Chocolate and a bronze for TVNZ’s ‘Real Stories’ to promote its show The Pacific. In the Direct Mail category, ‘A Rubbish Idea’ and ‘Real Stories’ both took silver, as did DDB’s Catalogue & Tee Shirt Folding Machine for AS Colour.
Colenso BBDO took all three awards handed out in the Integrated category, with gold for ‘Yellow Chocolate’ and a bronze apiece for Frucor’s ‘V Ladders’ and TVNZ’s ‘Real Stories’ to promote its show The Pacific. It also cleaned up in the Titanium category, with ‘A Rubbish Idea’ taking bronze and ‘Yellow Chocolate’ turning gold once again. Special Group took the only Interactive Axis, winning gold for the ‘Orcon Business Banner’.
Colenso is at the top of its creative game at the moment and it’s certainly walking the talk when it comes to devising big ideas that get brands talked about by consumers. And while Yellow Pages is wrestling with a few rather large financial demons at present, the pair’s impressive award-winning run continued last night at Vector Arena, when Yellow Chocolate was awarded the Grand Axis, the Titanium gold Axis and the Integrated gold Axis at the 2011 CAANZ Axis awards.
How things have changed over the past few years. New Zealand is now punching way over its weight in the ad business. For decades, New Zealand creatives simply didn’t have the budgets that the bigger markets had. But, as the best ad people do, they have turned this negative into a positive and worked out how to use these small budgets to make big, world beating campaigns.
It’s been an unusually exciting week in the world of business directories: first came news the NZ Post-run Localist was suing Yellow. And now Yellow Pages Group chief executive Bruce Cotterill has stepped down, although the two events are said to be unconnected.
Hot on the heels of the Yellow/Groupy deal and in line with the online acquisition strategies of other major media networks, MediaWorks has entered group buying territory, signing a joint venture agreement with Cudo Australia, Microsoft and Nine Entertainment Co. to launch Cudo in New Zealand.