Posts Tagged ‘Yellow Pages’

Google Maps Spam Innovation?

August 26, 2009

Today I was searching for a local french drain systems specialist to get a quote to install a drainage system in my backyard to handle the inordinate amounts of rain we have been having lately.

It seems like we have been having more than our fair share of 50 and 100 year downpours this summer.

On top of these once in a lifetime downpours we also had a reported 1 1/2 inches of rain fall in less than 30 minutes at the beginning of August when its typically dry as a bone.

Combined the two types of rain have created problems I didn’t have before because I haven’t owned my house for 50 years nor was was it built 100 years ago.

To save the time and hassle of cracking open one of the five yellow pages directories I receive annually, I thought I would see what information Google’s search results would provide.

To get straight to their local search results more quickly, I searched Google for “Oklahoma French Drain Systems”.

Google Maps Spam Innovation

Google Maps Spam Innovation

As expected, Google quickly delivered a set of three local business listings I could look over and then consider clicking or calling.

Nothing new there.

Since the top two listings shared the same great relevant domain – FrenchDrainSystems.com – I excitedly clicked through thinking I would soon be viewing the website of a great French Drain Systems company who could then help me solve my drainage problem.

Nope.

Clicking through to both of the top two results landed me on the same parked page.

FrenchDrainSystems.com

FrenchDrainSystems.com

Having seen a variety of spoofs occur on Google Maps particularly within the user content sections of business listings, I assumed this was the case here too.

Nope.

Looks like a local company – although not one in the French Drain Systems business – owns FrenchDrainSystems.com.

Apparently, they claimed their listing with either a previous website and then elected to display the parked page or the claimed their listing while using a parked page.

Either way, whether this was an innocent attempt at claiming some local search real estate with a parked domain or not, I don’t think the search results are what Google Maps had intended for its users to find.

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RIP Yellow Pages Industry?

November 17, 2008

Will the Yellow Pages industry be the next business category to suffer its demise at the hands of the internet?

Today’s Wall Street Journal has an interesting overview of the state of the Yellow Pages industry.

My take on the Yellow Pages industry:

Will the Yellow Pages go away anytime soon?

No.

Will 50% or more of the existing Yellow Pages advertising supply disappear in this economic cycle?

Yes.

Will the Yellow Pages industry as a whole ever experience the semi-monopolistic product and pricing power it once enjoyed?

No.

The most interesting figure to come from today’s Wall Street Journal article about the Yellow Pages industry is the graph showing the internet audience size of the top providers – MapQuest / AOL, Superpages.com / Idearc, Yellowpages.com / AT&T, Whitepages and Yahoo Local / Yahoo.

Yellow Pages

Yellow Pages

Collectively the group has less than 150 million unique visitors monthly.

How many more unique monthly visitors would the Yellow Pages industry need to become competitive?

Will the industry have time to amass a large enough internet audience to offset the losses occurring from a contraction in buyers and the continued erosion in their print audience?

The Yellow Pages industry could do what the auto industry does when its products and cost structures no longer generate profits – turn to Washington.

2009 Ad Spending Forecast and Media Attention Deficit (MAD)

October 14, 2008

Predicted growth in advertising spend per media for 2009 from Wachovia via the Wall Street Journal:

Growth of total U.S. advertising -0.8%

Internet +10%

Yellow Pages +6.3%

Cable TV +4.0%

Billboards +3.0%

Magazines -2.0%

Broadcast TV – 2.7%

Cable -4.0%

Radio -4.8%

Newspapers -9.8%

Don’t these ad growth – or lack thereof – predictions represent each specific media’s ability to reach, target and hold its audience’s attention?

When the overall economy contracts, aren’t general media those who first experience a contraction in their audience’s attention?

When media loses it’s ability to hold its audience’s attention doesn’t it soon thereafter lose advertiser support as well?