A majority of small business owners believe that generating (and retaining) customers is the toughest marketing challenge they face especially in these tough economic times.
The just released “Small Business Marketing Poll” from the Yellow Pages Association (YPA) found that nearly two-thirds (62%) of small business owners say they use only internal resources to assist in their marketing efforts, while nearly three in five (59.1%) small business owners say generating new customers/retaining current customers is the toughest marketing challenge they face.
The national study, conducted by global marketing research firm Issues and Answers, included 200 telephone and 200 online interviews with owners of small businesses (one to 50 employees), asking about their marketing and advertising habits.
From YPA’s press release:
“A majority of small business owners are not asking for outside help when it comes to marketing and advertising, so many may not realize that there are ample resources available at little or no charge” said Neg Norton, president, Yellow Pages Association. “And in times like these, when every dollar spent must be justified, and when winning and retaining customers is crucial, we feel that getting a professional opinion simply makes good business sense.”
When to comes to searching for a business or service, every thing from restaurants to landscape contractors to tire dealers, people use a multimedia strategy with both “old” and new media, based on a recent report from Knowledge Networks.
In results presented from a poll conducted in the spring among respondents age 13 and older, the report says 77% turn to print Yellow Pages. Yep, despite what you may be hearing those print phone books continue to be a preferred local shopping resource. In fact 48% said this is the source they use most often.
Of course online can be also be a valuable source when you are “browsing” for information. Search engines were the second most popular information source with 49% saying they use them to find a business or service, and 21% indicated they the Web is the most-often-used source.
The only other resources to register double digit usage in the survey were Internet Yellow Pages – IYP’s (36%, 13% used most often), free or fee-based 411 (30%, 8% used most often) and newspapers (19% , but only 2% used most often).
The study also shoots holes in the popular perception that people are roaming the streets with new web-enabled mobile devices in hand seeking those sames products or services. Currently just 5% included “mobile search” among their sources, with just 1% saying they use mobile search most often.
Amy Healy, director of public policy for the Yellow Pages Association (YPA) was recently quoted on the Environmental Protection website that in the more than 10 million references for “Recycling Centers” in the Yellow Pages annually.
Given their wide distribution, the print Yellow Pages are a great source for local recycling information.
just as this blogger did:
Well, last night the power went out just before 7:00, and I used our phone book for the first time in years
Now just image the many other things he’s going to find in that Yellow Pages…
YPA President Neg Norton was intereviewed by Mobile Marketing this week (click here). It’s an interview you should check out as it shows the range of media advertising products that publishers are bringing to small and midsized businesses:
What role will mobile play for the Yellow Pages industry?
Mobile fits the Yellow Pages strategy of making information available anytime, anywhere.
Accessed shopping guide or price comparison services at least once per month. Source: comScore M:Metrics
Additionally, we believe wireless access affords us the opportunity to attract new customers beyond those who purchase print and Internet advertising.
In a related story, in this weeks YP Talk newsletter we also provided an article on a key industry supplier – AdFare, who is working with publishers to help them repuprose the video ads they have been adding to their Internet ads to also work in a mobile environemnt (click here)