Do You Use a Phonebook?



Yellow Pages


Do you use a phonebook? The Yellow Pages used to be the only way to find local businesses by category easily, but that has changed! This last week Yelp did a survey of business owners (Yelp members) on the use of Yellow Pages. I can't say that I am surprised by the findings, but I also take it with a grain of salt because it is a survey of people who are comfortable on the internet and use it (because they are Yelp members). Non the less, the findings are consistant with other similar serveys and findings of late. 



Here is what the servey resuts looked like: (taken directly from the Yelp Updates for the Week of May  2)

Last week, we presented a survey to gauge how business owners feel about yellow page phone books in the digital age. Only 24% of our 3,500+ respondents said "Yes" to the question, “Are yellow page phone books still relevant?”

That's quite a find. Here are some others:

1) Most business owners don't think yellow page phone books are useful to them:

“Yellow page phone books are useful to me as a business owner.”
Agree – 11%
Somewhat Agree – 17%
Somewhat Disagree – 19%
Disagree – 52%

2) Only about 10% of business owners use yellow page phone books more than once per month; 3 out of 4 don't use it at all:

How many times per month do you rely on a yellow page phone book to find a local business?
“Zero” – 75%
“Once” – 14%
“Between two and four times” – 8%
“Five or more times” – 3%

3) Very few business owners believe customers find them using a yellow page phone book.

Estimated percentage of customers who find me using a yellow page phone book.
“0%” – 43%
“1-25%” – 47%
“26-50%” – 5%
“51-75%” – 3%
“76-99%” – 1%
“100%” – 0.1%

The conclusion: Business owners have clearly observed the shrinking relevance of yellow page phone books. As we continue to move away from printed phone books, online and mobile directories will continue to grow as the customer's choice for local business information.

I have to agree with the conclusions, because in my own marketing I have seen this to be true. We used to be in all of "the books", then one year we never recieved a call generated by a book (we keep a log of where people heard about us when they call). Since that infamous year "the books" are all mad at me, because I pulled all of my ads. I now concentrate my efforts (and sizeable amount of money) to sites like Google Places, Yelp, Facebook Places, etc. 

I encourage you, if you don't already keep track of where customers hear about you. Then use that to gauge if you are using your advertising bugdet wisely. If you don't know where to begin, we would be happy to sit down and discuss the many options that are available for little or no cost to you.

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