Posts Tagged ‘Yellow Pages’

New Law Makes Florists Happy, But Has Wider Implications For Yellow Pages & Search Engine Ads

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

A story in the Rochester, Minnesota Post-Bulletin describes a new state law that florists apparently campaigned-for which bans non-local companies from advertising local business services (in “New law removes thorn from side of local florists“). The story reports that this new law prohibits “deceptive” advertising by companies that misrepresent their location by using a false address and “local” phone number, and it would bar “any business from advertising on the Internet or in the Yellow Pages unless they also list a physical address.”

Florists in the Yellow Pages

I’ve heard florists complain about the wire services companies for many years over this very same issue. Companies such as FTD, Teleflora, Proflowers and 1-800-Flowers have long provided florists with broker services — they market themselves through many channels, both local and nationwide.

My family actually used to own a wholesale floristry service in West Texas, so I have some degree of direct understanding of how these florists feel. Many yellow pages companies, both online and print, have allowed these large, influential florist services to advertise with seemingly-local area listings. Consumers grabbing a yellow pages book or searching online for floral shops rarely can discern between the independent local florists and the ads of the brokers. Once the consumer orders flowers from the broker, they end up paying various service charges — the broker subtracts their cut and sends the order on to a local flower shop to fulfill, based upon standardized catalogs of products. Florists have long gnashed their teeth that consumers pay extra for less product, needlessly passing on money to these referral services.

I’ll confess: I’ve been a floristry industry insider, and I’ve ordered flowers both ways. I can tell the difference between good-quality flowers and bad ones, too.

You might think I’d side with the independent florists on this issue, but I don’t think it’s that cut-and-dried. (more…)

AU Yellow Pages Campaign Provokes Incredulity

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

Hidden Pizza - Yellow Pages Marketing Campaign

YPA’s Stephanie Hobbs wrote an article for this week’s Locals Only column at Search Engine Land, and in it she used the recent Hidden Pizza marketing campaign for the Australian Yellow Pages as an example of why local businesses need to take a multi-platform approach to modern advertising. However, Ed Kohler, outspoken critic of yellow pages advertising, took exception to the article in both the comments and on his blog, calling it a “rigged study”.

I earlier critiqued the Hidden Pizza yellow pages campaign myself, (more…)

[yellow collection]

Saturday, April 24th, 2010

What would you do with 10,000 phone books? [yellow collection] is a site set up to collect ideas on what to do with printed yellow pages books. Some artists have contributed photos of pieces they’ve created involving the color yellow and/or phonebooks.

Yellow Pages Art from Yellow Collection by Petter Palander

Yellow Pages Art from Yellow Collection Petter Palander / CC BY 2.0

Obviously they’re taking it for granted that people don’t use yellow pages to look up business information any more!

Making art from old phone books has a lot of appeal for me — I’ve long thought of using old directory covers to make origami stars for Christmas decorations for my friends who still work in the Yellow Pages industry.

It would actually be cool if YP industry were to create a factory to generate recycled furniture out of compressed yellow pages composite — I’ve seen chairs and tables made out of recycled paper before, and I think doing something so visible and useful would likely provide postive publicity to the ailing print directory business.

In a similar vein, the “Hidden Pizza” marketing campaign by Sensis yellow pages company in Australia used recycled material from their yellow pages billboard campaign to cover seats in the restaurant.

If more were done to diffuse the environmental complaints about unwanted phone books from those who no longer use them, it might have reduced hostility towards the industry. For instance, I do not see/hear nearly as much irritation from people about receiving unwanted newspapers in their yards, and this poses much more inconvenience to me in an ongoing basis than phone books do.

(Image courtesy of Petter Palander / CC BY 2.0)

Guerrilla Marketing Yellow Pages Down Under

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Or, “How to get the hipsters to use the yellow pages again – give them free pizza!”

Using free pizza to promote the Yellow Pages in Australia

A secret restaurant offering free pizza to any smart enough to find it is apparently a front organization for a guerrilla marketing campaign to promote the Yellow Pages down under. “Hidden Pizza” emerged via a website and some word-of-mouth-marketing, offering free pizza to anyone who can find it for the next two weeks.

Hidden Pizza - Yellow Pages Guerrilla Marketing Campaign

Catch is, they apparently want you to find it a certain way. According to their site’s “Find Us” page:

Finding the restaurant is easy, just look it up the way you would any other business from April 12 – April 25 and the pizzas are free.

The business apparently doesn’t have a Google Maps entry as of yet, but The Age reveals that the restaurant is part of a marketing campaign that’s likely on behalf of Sensis, Australia’s Yellow Pages company.

Kate, over at the Eating Melbourne blog says what I’m thinking: (more…)

AT&T’s Rebranding To

Monday, April 5th, 2010

Greg Sterling called attention to AT&T’s apparent rebranding project which will use “” as their dominant online site/brand going forward. the new

While I’ve been openly critical of some of AT&T directories’ decisions in the past, I think this is definitely a smart move. I think there’s sufficient indication that the concept and recognition of the “Yellow Pages” brand is becoming obsolete. It would appear that AT&T agrees with me, since this amounts to a major tectonic shift in their branding. (more…)

Yelp CEO Claims Biz Owners Just Don’t Understand Their Review Filter Algorithm

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

YelpA few days ago, a New York Times interview with Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman quotes him as saying that they don’t extort companies in return for suppressing negative reviews, but business owners fail to comprehend that reviews may appear and disappear based upon an algorithm that runs in the background.

New Yellow Pages Logo Wasted Effort

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

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. (more…)