Yellow Unveils Digital Transformation

Jess Manson Case Studies

Campaign overview

Digital transformation has wrought big changes for many businesses in recent times. For New Zealand phone directory provider Yellow it wasn’t just a move to digital first. Within the space of 18 months, the company would pivot to become New Zealand’s largest digital agency for SMEs, gain a new CEO and rebrand.

The company called on Alexander PR to help it change both consumer and business perception of the services it provides, while raising its profile, highlighting its move to a digital first business and helping showcase its many services.

Partnerships, transformation and wins

Initial work focused around highlighting Yellow’s latest wins and its transformation, complete with new partnerships and events such as the roving The Biz events, which aimed to educate small and medium business owners across New Zealand about what they could do to elevate their profile online with Yellow.

The Biz events gained coverage across regional media, including the Timaru Herald and Tauranga’s Sunlive, while the new partnership of Yellow/move – and the introduction of movologists – sparked coverage in media including TV3’s The Cafe, and Now to Love/NZ Women’s Weekly.

The appointment of Darren Linton as the new CEO in 2017 heralded a move into a more proactive media phase, with Alexander PR working to build positive media relationships for Darren, ahead of Yellow’s rebrand. One-on-one interviews with key media were set up, introducing Linton, highlighting the digital-first strategy ahead of the rebrand, and ensuring a smooth transition to the new leadership, publicly. In the lead up to the interviews, Alexander PR worked with Darren to prepare him with media training.

The one-on-ones and news of the transformation and Darren’s appointment prompted coverage across mainstream and specialist media including NZherald.co.nz, CIO, Stoppress and Bizedge.

Other key hires were highlighted to showcase the shift in skill sets within Yellow. Alexander PR also worked with Yellow’s HR team to highlight the company’s innovative HR policies – including summer hours, gender pay equality and flexiworking – which positioned it as an employer of choice. An interview with HRD Magazine resulted in six articles covering a range of HR topics and Yellow’s own success in improving employee sentiment.

While Yellow has become increasingly digital, the company is still required to provide its hard copy Yellow directories. Using Yellow’s statistics provided evidence-based communications to highlight that the books were well used and turn what has historically been a reactive approach to a proactive front-footing of media enquiries about the need for the books.

This approach saw Darren interviewed by RadioLive Long Lunch with Wendyl Nissen, with Wairarapa Time-Age and TVNZ and NBR also among the media covering the issue, while stuff.co.nz highlighted a trial enabling apartment dwellers to opt-in to having the printed copies delivered.