Yelp Announces New Ad Products to Help National Advertisers Connect at the Local Level

Anna Wolfe
Senior Editor, Restaurants
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Yelp Inc. introduced two new advertising products, Sponsored Collections, expanding Yelp Audiences campaigns to help national brands better reach a local audience both on and off the platform, and Seasonal Spotlight Ads, which helps brands reach Yelp's high-intent users right on Yelp’s home screen.

Sponsored Collections, which appear on the Yelp iOS app homepage, enable brands, with or without a storefront, the opportunity to showcase local businesses around a common theme. Yelp partners with each advertiser to curate a list of locally owned businesses to support a brand initiative in select markets. There is no cost for local businesses to participate in Sponsored Collections, which are currently available on the Yelp iOS app, with an Android experience coming soon.

The Kraft Heinz Company is currently working with Yelp on a multifaceted campaign that leverages Yelp Audiences and Sponsored Collections. The business-owner focused campaign is a first for Kraft Heinz.

In eight weeks, Kraft Heinz has leveraged Yelp Audiences to reach nearly four million Yelp users self-identified as business owners and restaurant operators off the platform, based on reporting provided by The Trade Desk. Kraft Heinz’s Yelp Audiences campaign uses ads to drive consideration of Heinz Ketchup and Philadelphia Cream Cheese. To further extend the reach of the campaign, Kraft Heinz will run a Sponsored Collections campaign in November and December. The campaign started as an opportunity for Kraft Heinz to spotlight local business owners in 25 cities that are likely to carry Heinz Ketchup products.

“This campaign reinforces to foodservice operators that consumers see brands like HEINZ and Philadelphia as signals of quality in a restaurant,” said Brandon Potter, Head of Brand Marketing, Away From Home at Kraft Heinz. “Yelp’s rich data set allows us to target this very specific – and hard to reach – audience both on and off the platform.”

Today, Yelp also officially announced Seasonal Spotlight Ads aimed at helping multi-location brands drive in-store traffic by communicating directly with Yelp’s high-intent audience about seasonal deals, promotions and new products. By leveraging a carousel on the Yelp iOS app homepage, individual posts will appear from brands that allow consumers to learn more about the brand’s holiday campaign and other tentpole moments, including New Year’s, Valentine’s Day, spring cleaning, Denim Day and Tax Day. Seasonal Spotlight campaigns run alongside another Yelp advertising campaign, either on-platform with Yelp Ads, or off-platform with Yelp Audiences.

During the pilot period, IHOP saw a strong incremental lift in store visits with their Seasonal Spotlight Ads campaigns for Father’s Day and National Waffle Day, based on its third-party attribution studies. This Thanksgiving, IHOP will continue to leverage Seasonal Spotlight Ads to help drive diners to its restaurants ahead of the holiday week.

Additionally, Yelp has seen a significant increase in customer adoption of Yelp’s first-party attribution tool, Yelp Store Visits, which leverages its rich first-party dataset to help advertisers better understand how their ads are driving consumers to their locations. Cost-per-click ad budgets from National and Midmarket clients leveraging Yelp Store Visits increased by more than 5X from the third quarter of 2019 to the third quarter of 2021, while the average number of accounts has more than doubled.

Yelp’s suite of ad offerings are available on the Yelp iOS and Android apps.

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