Have you ever wondered for even a second how much advertising money is in that Yellow Page Book that is still in the delivery bag in your garage? Or how about that other red covered Yellow Page Book that is underneath the old paint cans in your basement? Or why that Talking Yellow Page Book has never said anything about how much money the advertisers wasted in there and will never be heard? Are you getting the idea that I am not that impressed with the Yellow Pages regardless of which publisher or phone company puts it together?
I speak with businesses all day long that put money into the yellow page advertising black hole. Part of the reason is just habit. It’s what many have done for a long time and they simply renew year in and year out. Others have fallen prey to slick sales folks who make the Yellow Pages appear to be some kind of marketing panacea. I have just one word for this issue and your marketing budget: reallocation.
I am sure that many of you reading this post have spent money with the Yellow Pages. Some have decided to discontinue while others still do. Now I am not saying that these books are worthless or don’t deliver any results. That would be unfair. I am willing to state however that their relevance is nothing like it used to be and is dwindling every year.
There is value in the Yellow Pages, however, and Mike Moran does an excellent job of describing how to do that in his Biznology blog. The good news is that there is some value in the variety of online listings that are out there for the many yellow page directories. How is that so based on what I wrote earlier? It’s easy…….it’s free! I would agree with Mike’s advice to make sure you are listed in as many of these freebies as possible. Will it get you traffic and business? I don’t know but it is free. The downside of course, is the fact that you are being bunched in with all of your competitors and if you want to differentiate yourself you will need to pay for premium services.
Oh yea, about reallocation. I may be biased but take that money you are wasting with the Yellow Pages and put it into search marketing. It’s incredibly measurable. You can assign real return on investment (ROI) value to it. There are no long term commitments. It’s a place for the little guy to appear big. There’s more but I guess you get the point.
Bottom line is to look long and hard at your marketing spend and stop throwing your advertising bucks into your customers’ garages and basements.
SMB Takeaway: Utilize as many free Yellow Page directories online as possible because they are free and stop wasting your marketing dollars on the printed version. Put your money into search marketing so you can be where your future customers are looking for you, know exactly what you spent and know what it generated for your bottom line.
Thanks and have a great day!