New Yellow Pages Logo Wasted Effort

by Chris Silver Smith

The Yellow Pages Group in Canada has announced a new logo makeover:

YellowPages logo

I really hate to think about how much was likely spent on this! I think the new logo is such a continued representation of the legacy yellow pages that it was pointless to make a change to it at all.

Marc Tellier, president and CEO of the Yellow Pages Group, stated that “…The message it sends is that [the company] is multi-platform: we’re online, we’re mobile and we are still the leading and most widely used print directory in the country.”

So, they changed the iconography of the “walking fingers”, removing the book symbol shape from it. Yet, it’s still yellow, it still has the well-known walking fingers (which are daily less representative of how consumers find local information), and it still uses the “Yellow Pages” brandname. I think the majority of users will miss the fact that the book has been removed from the symbol, and thus the significance of the change will be lost upon them entirely.

There’s nothing about the new logo which communicates “multi-platform”, and the continued use of the “Yellow Pages” name so strongly references the print directory product that the change will likely not halt the trend making the product seem less relevant to the consumers of today.

The Canadian print yellow pages companies have thus far bucked the trend of eroding consumer usage, but I think there are indications that the Canadian market is beginning to experience the same behavioral shifts we’ve seen in the States. Not only are consumers there leaving phone books for new media, but consumer groups are popping up to complain about print yellow pages being left on their doorsteps, just as we’ve seen in the USA. I think the trend has been delayed there, giving them more time to prepare for it, but developments such as this pretend rebranding show that extra head start they’ve had has been wasted.

It would require a few orders of magnitude greater budget than a slight logo facelift to bolster the Yellow Pages brandname, and unless that is done, a trumped-up logo tweak paired with a press release is spending money at the wrong end of the equation.

Postscript: see also Greg Sterling’s post on YPG’s new image campaign.



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6 Responses to “New Yellow Pages Logo Wasted Effort”

  1. Perry says:

    It screams “guitar pick” to me 😉

    I agree, Chris, a lame iterative design. Either stick with the fingers and drop the Yellow Pages brand, or drop the fingers – show SOME willingness to move forward in identity!

    For a business that have moved forward in many ways more than most, it’s disappointing.

  2. Hi,

    I agree with you that this is not an excellent example of naming and branding.

    I have serious concerns about the design approach not to mention the name of the brand.
    I will post a detailed analysis on Monday.

    You can check

    Gunter Soydanbay

  3. Paul Dumas says:

    When will the old school simply realize that they have missed the boat? Fact of the matter is that Google has been and continues to be the #1 referral source for any local business. If Google doesn’t like you, then your business will suffer.

    Following the Yellow Pages brand is like witnessing the sadness of the terminally ill.

  4. […] move contrasts with the recent yellow pages rebranding effort of the Yellow Pages Group in Canada. In that rebrand exercise, YPG made an altogether subtle […]

  5. Mike Stewart says:

    I agree with Paul. …. I also have to state that I dig cool looking Guitar Picks!