Are newspapers a good candidate to drive the free directory assistance market? Say Hello leader Jim Geddes hopes so.
His theory, which I have previously reported on, is that newspapers are ideally positioned to rule free DA. They have the promotional power that comes with daily circulation, and they are closely identified with content that can add to DA lookups, such as sports scores, movies, weather, stocks, lottery, and auto and real estate classifieds.
Say Hello’s first affiliating newspaper is The Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville. (The paper’s owner, Morris Communications, is an investor in Say Hello.) Now that the service has been in wide release for about a month, we were provided a look at the early stats.
Geddes estimates the service has already grabbed about 2 percent of Jacksonville’s DA market. The rollout’s major finding is that people will use the service for non-DA calls. Geddes says 30 percent to 40 percent of calls were for non-DA channels, such as movies.
During the rollout, up to 17 percent of callers visited more than one channel. Fifty-five percent were repeat callers.