The best local small business PPC service does not come in a box…..

So you signed a contract for Pay Per Click from the yellow pages?So I was driving by McDonald’s yesterday while on the phone with a local Dallas area business owner, the comedic timing for my comments to him could not have been any better.

Prepare for another soapbox soliloquy:

I said to him, “You don’t expect the so-called internet advertising experts at the yellow pages company, who state they offer “transparency in reporting,” to actually incorporate Google Analytics do you? I explained to him that when the Yellow pages industry started feeling the shift from consumers away from the printed phone books that litter millions of doorsteps, and finally decided that they needed to create an advertising product to grow alongside the world’s #1 search engine Google, they had very little focus and very little experience. It wasn’t that folks in the phone book industry were not smarter than I am. It wasn’t that they didn’t have the ability to put businesses in front of consumers on the internet. The real issue was fulfillment and transparency.

FACT: PPC campaign managers were on gag order and instructed not to disclose the number of PPC accounts managed.

FACT: 12 month contracts only work for print yellow page ads (since the books can not be undelivered)

FACT: Google and Yahoo do not have contracts for internet advertising

FACT: Yellow Pages PPC marketers use your data to build competitors campaigns

FACT: If your campaign does not perform, you are required to pay 400-1000.00 per month or more for management regardless of clicks…. for the ENTIRE 12 MONTH TERM!

FACT: PPC costs are higher when doing PPC with YELLOW PAGES (just look at the margins and overhead)


FACT: Management fees should not be a fixed cost. They should be billed hourly or transparent.

FACT: SEO is not as complex as the industry leads you to believe.

FACT: Wide spread abuse of Google AdWords Certifications exams exists at Yellow Pages organizations.

FACT: Yellow Pages do not build your brand, your website, or your Google AdWords campaign…. You have a bad experience and cancel your contract…………………………………. YOU LOSE EVERYTHING!

He told me that he and other business owners were in the process of filing a suit against a yellow pages company located in Dallas for click fraud. I asked him, “How can you prove it?” He stated that when he put analytics in the site, he was shocked to see that Google was not tracking the same data that the Yellow Pages company was billing him. I wonder to what extent business owners are experiencing this same problem? How many “bad experiences” exist for the business owners that rely on the “Marketing in a Box” products from the Yellow Pages?

It seems to me, as a fellow small business owner, the choice is very clear…..

Don’t expect to get good advice from Phone Book or Super dooper Media companies for your internet advertising!


Instead of signing a contract for a SuperHappySearchMarketing Meal served with “Kool-Aid” and cronyism….. find a local search marketer who will train, teach, consult, create, innovate, strategize, quantify, measure, fulfill, and be accountable for your businesses growth and prosperity.


9 Responses to The best local small business PPC service does not come in a box…..

  1. […] The best local small business PPC service does not come in a box …14 minutes ago by Mike Stewart  Tags: adwords, google ppc, internet marketing value, local search marketing, ppc, SMLocal, what is wrong with yellow pages, yellow crooks, yellow pages fraud, yellow pages scam, yellowcrooks, … […]

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  7. Tim Allen says:

    One part that is not a “fact” is in regards to you HAVING to pay 12 months of a contract. Some companies do make you sign a contract for term of commitment (some are also less than 12 months). However you can simply put a stop payment on your card. Its simple. Yellowpage companies have to pay google. You don’t pay, they don’t put your campaign up. Also in regards to using one companies campaign to work against you with anothers is missleading. Perhaps having access to multiple businesses in a vertical can have benefits. Learning more trends with CTR, etc.

    • Mike Stewart says:

      12 month contracts result in 12 months of management fee regardless of whether you pause your click campaign. In my opinion this is “Having to Pay 12 months of Contract.”

      I understand the need to pay Google, but what I don’t understand is the need to continue a management fee after you begin having issues. Again, it is the axe over the clients head just like the Printed Yellow Pages model before it with loss of placement and seniority with downgraded ads. The internet is more flexible than print. Google does not require a contract, but are they offering financing of campaigns which “the Yellow Pages” still own? Or are the management fees disclosed properly? The lack of transparency from both a measurement/analytics perspective and distribution disclosures (content network etc) is extremely ambiguous.

      Do you not agree?

      I will agree on the trends and learning. Yet I do tend to think that YP companies intentionally sacrifice value to the client due to the increased overhead and need for higher margins.

      Do you not agree?

      Mike Stewart

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