Archive for April, 2011

Blogging Live from ‘Search Starts Here’

Sunday, April 17, 2011

It’s finally here! Members from across the country and around the world are now gathering for the start of our 36th annual conference, ‘Search Starts Here,’ at Caesers Palace in Las Vegas.

Over the next few days, we’ll hear directly from our industry’s leaders and analysts, as well as other important figures with strong knowledge of the issues facing our business, about the pivotal trends driving change in the local search industry.

For both those in attendance and others who are unable to join us, we’ll be live blogging here throughout the conference on the speakers, panels and other notable events taking place at this leading industry gathering. We hope you will utilize our blog as a resource and join the conversation by leaving comments on discussion that interest you.

Looking forward to a great conference!

Q&A with Marc Tellier of Yellow Pages Group

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

On Monday, April 18 at 8:45am, during our Search Starts Here conference in Las Vegas, we’ll be sitting down with  Marc Tellier, CEO of Yellow Pages Group in Canada in a fireside chat format. If you have a question you’d like me to ask Marc, please post it in the comments below. We’ll post the questions and answers here on this blog during the conference.

Marc leads Canada’s largest internet media company in terms of revenues, customers and traffic. Yellow Pages Group also leads the industry in almost all financial and operational metrics. In Marc’s 10 years as CEO, revenues and EBITA have more than tripled and the company has made Canada’s Top 10 Corporate Cultures for 5 consecutive years.

I’m looking forward to this interview. Hope to see some good questions from you!

Yellow and White Make Green

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Nova Scotia’s Chronicle Herald recently filed a story about the environmental impact of print directories and the industry’s recently launched print directory opt-out program. It’s nice to see that industry efforts to promote directory recycling, including a whole “eco-guide” at the beginning of each book, are working as directories have an 85% recycling rate in Canada.

The story also points out that you can opt-out of your directory in Canada either online or by phone – and that only 22,000 have opted out so far. In fact, half of all Canadians use the Yellow Pages at least once a month. The writer also points out that many publishers are not sending out White Pages unless they’re requested because they’re just not used as much.

Please remember that if you’d like to reduce or eliminate print directories, sign up at

New Research on Print Directory Usage

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Our colleagues over at AT&T released some new research about the usage of print directories. It presents clear evidence that print Yellow Pages are still valuable to advertisers and consumers alike. And as Greg Sterling notes on his blog, print numbers remain much healthier than many internet insiders and opt-in proponents believe.

M/A/R/C Research interviewed more than 50,000 consumers across the country in 2010 and found that 69% of adults have used an AT&T Real Yellow Pages in the past year. In addition, 29% of adults are using as their online local search directory, up from 17% in 2009. When and print numbers are combined, data shows that 78% of adults have used at least one of the products in the past year – up from 77% in 2009.

The release also refers to a recent 2010 Metered Ad Study by CRM Associates which found that calls to businesses from consumers using print directories increased by 10% in the past year. In fact, 60% of individual advertisers experienced an increase in these calls in 2010.

On this blog we’ve frequently discussed the industry transition from print to digital offerings but it’s great to see our belief that print directories are still useful to so many people validated by credible, third-party research. As Ken Ray, chief marketing officer of AT&T Advertising Solutions, said, “We are definitely seeing a transition in local search from print to multimedia sources. But print remains one of the most effective and foundational elements of that multimedia mix.”

Also interesting to note is that AT&T’s local search offerings garner more than five billion consumer searches per year, including almost three billion from The Real Yellow Pages and over two billion from the YP Local Ad Network, which consists of, YPmobile, and other major local search publishers across online, mobile, and IPTV.

New Standards in Local Search: Daily Deals, Loyalty Programs and Group Buying

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

In this month’s Locals Only column on Search Engine Land, I write about one of the biggest trends in 2011 to date – the booming group advertising and daily deal offerings. The success of companies like Groupon and LivingSocial have triggered a shift in the online local search market as we’re now seeing daily deal models integrate into local search engines and social media.

Small- and medium-sized businesses can really benefit from offering daily deals and loyalty programs to local customers via local search engines. In addition to some of the dynamic content that I wrote about in the March column, these new options are becoming essential to a successful digital advertising campaign.

It’s exciting to watch the local search industry integrate these new digital models and techniques while preserving its own core business – getting people the right information and listings wherever they live.

And don’t miss the opportunity to hear more about social media, daily deals and other new digital models at our 2011 Conference – Search Starts Here, April 16-20 at Caesars Palace. There’s still time to register.

See you in Las Vegas!