What Could Save The Yellow Pages? 10 Ideas


What Could Save The Yellow Pages? 10 Ideas

https://i2.wp.com/nettoolkits.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/yellow-pages-dead.jpgI noticed that not many have re-Tweeted or shared this article. Great suggestions from Chris Smith, another former employee of Verizon/Idearc Media, who is highly regarded as one of the country’s top 10 masterminds in Local Search Marketing. He is a true expert. He is one of the reasons Superpages.com was ranked higher than YellowPages.com and RealPages.com for so many years.

In this article he suggests 10 things the print yellow page industry can do to evolve into a media company of the future.

I strongly agree with the sentiments on saturation distribution, unwanted phone books, and improving diversity and product offering in the internet space.

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4 Responses to What Could Save The Yellow Pages? 10 Ideas

  1. Jason Hyman says:

    That was a good article. I agree with about 90% of his ideas. good re-post.

  2. Jack M. Wolfson says:

    I used to work with Mike Stewart. Mike is sharp when doing DOT.COM. I am SURE that Paper-Print Yellow pages is OLD 1910 technology! Today the BEST advertising $ Dollars are Smart Phones, Internet, Electronic Billboards, Direct Mail, Radio, TV, and some Local Newspapers. In almost 9 years I have seen advertising dollars much better off AWAY from the Printed Phone Books.
    In 1982 CD’S started to take away the old vinyl records. Today 99% of the tunes are on CD’S, NOT Vinyl Records. The Y.P. are similar in that consumers 95% don’t use phone books anymore. They are not able to keep up with the current changes that people are use to.
    Therefore ALL of the sales folks selling ads in phone books might as well face the changes in society and sell useful media both to the consumer as well as the advertiser!

    • Mike Stewart says:

      Thanks for the compliment Jack.

      To some extent I agree with your opinion on printed yellow pages.

      I believe the product is still between the lines:

      The Consumer opinion is “Nobody Uses the Phone Book.”

      The Yellow Page industry opinion is “Some us the print, some use the internet, but most use both.” This is complete BULLSHIT! It is just a means of getting clients to diversify advertising in order to cover the shortfall from print. Most don’t use both. They choose one or the other. I have a hunch that aside from rural areas, that are always behind the curve on internet progression, they are going to continue bundling advertising to reach both types of consumers.

      The general sales rep opinion is “I hope I don’t put my clients in a bind for the sake of a dime”

      The truth is in the middle. Yellow Pages and Idearc will still be in business publishing phone books for years to come. Although the company is less than 1/2 the size it once was, it will keep printing books for at least 8-10 more years.

      I have found that Yellow Page usage is still heavy in rural areas but declining at a dramatic rate in urban areas. If you are in metropolitan cities you will see an increased rate of abandonment from printed forms of media. For one the percentage of folks who work with computers increases when you get to more urban areas.

      I always found it disturbing that after the GTE days of Yellow Pages that Verizon reduced focus on rural area directories. They practically gave markets like San Angelo, Sulphur Springs, and Bryan-College Station Texas to other publishers like Area Wide Directories. These are markets where the yellow pages is still a heavily used product. ( I also believe that the attempt at publishing Spanish yellow pages was also not well perceived by the area business owners…. huge marketing blunder in my opinion — now that I can actually state MY OPINION )

      If yellow page reps want to survive the change in consumer local search behaviors, they need to become more educated with internet marketing beyond the company product focused learning courses.

      Thanks for the contribution Jack.

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