In an executive interview today with the “Father of IYP,” Pat Marshall, Yellow Book‘s chief new media officer talked about his re-entrance to the IYP space and what Yellow Book is looking for new business partners.
In all fairness, Marshall, who was previously head of Idearc’s (the former Verizon) Superpages.com, said he didn’t want to return to the IYP space, but rather wanted to get back into local search. Marshall characterized Yellowbook.com’s current position as more in the IYP business but said the trajectory is gradually moving toward local search.
Yellowbook.com is looking for partners right now primarily in three categories: infrastructure, traffic and inventory. Marshall gave some pretty specific direction on what Yellowbook.com will and will not consider in terms of potential partners and literally offered his e-mail address for the attendees looking to work with one of the fastest growing IYPs in the U.S. today.
More specifically, this is what he said:
1) Infrastructure – A potential partner must bring Yellowbook.com a business plan and provide a compelling argument as to how it can increase revenue, lower costs or provide a more competitive offering in the market.
2) Inventory – Marshall very directly said a potential partner must be willing to “put some skin in the game.” Why will the inventory be good for Yellowbook.com’s customers?
3) Traffic – A potential partner must bring a qualified audience to provide meaningful users to Yellow Book’s customers.
Marshall joined Yellow Book in July 2007 and while he can’t be given full credit for helping the Yellow Book Network grow its unique visitors (per comScore data) 137 percent from Q4 2006 to Q4 2007 and increase its share of IYP searches from 4 percent to 8.6 percent for the same period, he certainly can share in some of the credit. Going forward new advertising campaigns that will debut in the coming weeks will focus specifically on the various digital components of the Yellow Book business and future online growth will be credited to Marshall and his team.