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Yellow Pages launches 2015 directory with new features

Published:Monday | December 1, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Rasheed Girvan, digital manager at Jamaica Yellow Pages, shows how the new, augmented reality feature works with the help of Sharna-Kay Gregore.
Ladianne Wade (right), Global Directories' director of sales (Caribbean), chats with Novelet Moore (left) and Carol Hibbert (second left) of Axia Jamaica Insurance Agency, and Jamaica Yellow Pages' Tamar Tomlinson. They were at the the 2015 Directory and Augmented Reality Launch, held at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel, Waterloo Road, on Tuesday. - Winston Sill/Freelance Photographer

The Jamaica Yellow Pages (Jamaica YP) directory you knew is about to change.

Already making use of cyberspace with its online directory, and getting into the smart devices world with its mobile app, Jamaica YP is upping the ante. The printed directory that has graced coffee tables, company lobbies and doctors' offices for years will now incorporate more cutting-edge technology, that of augmented reality (AR). Director of Publishing Lester Garnett called it "the print matrix" because AR bridges the gap between the print and the online space.

"It builds on your message to customers in a timely manner," he told the many advertisers and clients who turned up at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel, last Tuesday, for the launch of the 2015 directory. Reiterating the company's mandate to "innovate, activate and inspire", Garnett said Jamaica YP is "using the technology of the day to provide greater value to customers...". AR refers to the ability of advertisers to turn the regular printed ads in the directory to interactive experiences to better entice customers. This technology provides users with an augmented view of a real-world environment through the use of computer-generated inputs, namely sound, video, graphics or GPS data.

Rasheed Girvan, digital manager, explained some of the features. He showed the keen audience how to download the AR app from Layar, the global leader in augmented reality and interactive print technology, to your smart device (there are other AR apps but Layar works really for Jamaica YP's offerings). Utilising the app, advertisers can insert links, videos, slideshows and more on the print material; all will be available for viewing, listening and reading after scanning the app. For example, if a store has a catalogue, users can download it to their device or flip through the pages right there on their tablet or smartphone screen, just from scanning the app on the directory's print page.

Special Alert

Apart from the AR innovation, Ladianne Wade, director of sales YP (Caribbean), explained other additions to the online directory and the mobile app. The app now has a proximity-based deal alert that notifies the user of a company or store having a sale once the mobile user is in the area. Voice-activated searches are now available and the site keeps a history of a user's search.

Garnett noted that about 500,000 copies of the 2015 directory have been printed and are being delivered through a series of roadshows. Over 78 per cent of Jamaican households have a Jamaica YP directory, while close to 90 per cent indicate they use them.