‘Beyond Yellow’: Not Your Father’s Directory

Yellowbook is moving “beyond yellow” with a new campaign and messaging that seeks to reposition the company as a full-service provider of online marketing solutions — not merely a YP publisher.

From the release:

To tout the new Yellowbook360 platform, Yellowbook called on agency of record, New York-based Gotham Inc., who created a campaign encouraging small and midsized businesses to think “Beyond Yellow”. National broadcast, print, radio, and mobile and digital banner efforts launch today and speak to the many Yellowbook tools available to assist businesses in their customer outreach: from videos on yellowbook.com and display ads in Yellowbook directories to website development, search engine marketing and optimization, direct marketing and social media outreach, and transparent reporting on all campaign performance. Yellowbook media consultants provide one-on-one guidance to help clients choose which tools will work best for their business.

In general this is what the industry must do to retain customers and attract new advertisers. It’s also why I think Canada’s Yellow Pages Group should simply become “YPG” — a little like International Business Machines becoming IBM or Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing becoming 3M.

The print directory is just one product now among many, albeit the most profitable still by far. Companies such as DexOne and SuperMedia have names and identities that aren’t as directly tied to print YP.

What do you think about the yellow pages brand today? Is it still valuable or has it become too narrow and a liability?

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6 Responses to “‘Beyond Yellow’: Not Your Father’s Directory”

  1. Mike McGrath says at

    The words Yellow Pages not only suggest something old but reminds me of the annoyance of finding a book in my driveway that I will recycle immediately. Historically, it’s up there with Western Union and telegrams as a poster child for old media. Naming can put more distance between the tired, old Yellow Pages and the current crop of IYPs, but it’s the user experience that will win the day. More progress needed on that front.

  2. Greg Sterling says at

    The challenge of course is that the print directory still brings in the bulk of revenues.

  3. SalvadorM says at

    The strange thing was that I had been harping on this way back in 2006 when I spent a year with them as a lowly Account Executive. They were barely starting to roll out a “bucket of clicks” style internet marketing initiative as I left in 2007. Good to know it only took them 4 years to get it together.

    Me? I just decided to start my own local internet marketing firm. In spite of the bad economy, I have been able to grow business year after year.

  4. Local Business Guy says at

    I have to say that Yellowbook has been offering strong Search Marketing strategies along with a large portfolio of products for several years now. So although the message and image may be new to the business world, many of the products are not. I know because myself and associates of mine are using these services with great success which is proven by reports I have access to on my account. It is a very good idea for yellowbook360 (I guess what they call themselves now) to let small businesses across the country know what they have to offer them.

  5. Greg Sterling says at

    Yes this appears more a branding/re-positioning announcement more than a product announcement.

  6. Kenneth Kibby says at

    I ran across your article. For me, this company has provided me Leads. It is a Lead generating machine for my advertising. My Exec. is very knowledgible on all the products and has been the biggest asset to my marketing, next to my Recommended Facilities I have working relationships with. I know how many calls I got, emails were received, hits on yb.com, and my website they created as a service site to work with my existing site, my video which I use on all my marketing–and more. Finally a company I can go to in Michigan to handle all my marketing mediums and track my return. About time. Another advantage, the branding of my advertising with the message we create is consistant! My Marketing Rep from Yellowbook makes sure of that. One Person: One contact: One dashboard to see my results. –this is offered by no one else for small business that I’m aware of.

    FYI : I do get calls –from our Metro Book for Weddings: booking from calls yielding 465% to date return.

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