Who Even Uses the Yellow Pages Anymore?

Jul 26, 2012   //   by John Tabita   //   Advertising, Business, Internet Marketing, Marketing  //  No Comments


I had the opportunity to speak with an account rep at an Internet company recently. As we talked about different types of advertising, it became obvious that he distained old media. He said that television advertising was pointless because people TiVo past them, and that he “couldn’t begin to remember” the last time he’d looked in the Yellow Pages. Instead, he uses a smartphone, buying a new one every 3 to 6 months, because he gets bored with the old one.

We were curious, so we asked a few personal questions. How old are you? Do you own your own home? Turns out he was 22-years-old, well-educated (BA in Marketing) but still living at home.

As we talked further, he did admit that his parents recently used the Yellow Pages to find a local contractor for some remodeling they needed.

For the past several years, business have began migrating their advertising away from Yellow Pages and into online media. What they don’t realize is that by doing so, they’re now targeting the 22-year-old living at home, rather than his home-owning, Baby Boomer parents with more disposable income.

Perhaps I’m stereotyping, but it makes my point. The old media vs. new media debate is not so black-and-white. In a recent study, 45 percent of consumers cited Yellow Pages as “the source I go to first for finding local business information”—just slightly ahead of search engines at 42 percent.

The results also skew differently for urban and rural markets. Another study found that in metro markets, 33 percent of consumers use print Yellow Pages exclusively; whereas, 49 percent of rural consumers use only Yellow Pages.

These studies make it clear that both Yellow Pages and search engines are the go-to sources consumers use to shop locally.

Over the next 15 years or so, as this 22-year-old goes on to purchase a home and raise a family, he’ll likely continue using the Internet and his mobile phone to search for the goods and services he needs. But until that transition is complete, so-called “old media” remains a marketing necessity.

Image credit

John Tabita

Marketing Evangelist and Blogger at SitePoint.com. Digital Strategy Director at HainesLocalSearch.com. Passionate about helping people and businesses reach their fullest potential and become wildly successful.

More Posts

Follow Me:
TwitterLinkedInGoogle Plus

Leave a comment

Get Web Design Clients!

If you’re struggling to get clients, then Web Design Clients Galore could make the biggest difference in your web design business this year.

Web Design Clients Galore

Learn how to get a constant supply of high-paying clients, and all the web design projects you want.

Web Design Clients Galore

About Me

Thanks for visiting. I’m a Marketing Evangelist, Blogger and Sales Trainer.

I get excited about geek stuff. But I’m also passionate about helping people and companies reach their fullest potential and becoming wildly successful.

That’s why I love helping businesses figure out how to market (especially web marketing) and why I train sales people to be the best they can be at what they do.

Click here to follow me