Questions

We are redoing our marketing budget and are wondering if the Yellow Pages are still an essential part of a marketing strategy for a small hotel?

We have a good on-line and social media presence.

14answers

Print advertising is expensive and phonebook usage has certainly declined. The marketplace can also be pretty fragmented with so many different publications. It would depend upon your market such as if you have a lot of retirees/seniors in your area that may still utilize a book? And have you previously found good results with phone book ads?

If you feel like phone book ads give a good ROI, I would put an emphasis on having solid assets in place to support it such as high quality photography, good online reviews, and modern, mobile friendly website. I hope this helps.

We are Google AdWords certified if you'd like to put more of an emphasis on online ads. Feel free to set up a call with me if you'd like to discuss.


Answered 4 years ago

I'm probably biased but I don't know of anywone who uses yellow pages anymore, especially for travel. The local yellow pages, at best, will show me hotels in my local area. Unfortunately, when I need a hotel, it's not in my area!

I would transfer your yellow page advertising over to more online marketing, specifically PPC. Even if you are already doing strong web marketing, there is always room to improve.

You don't have to do it all at once, you can slowly (over the course of a few years, perhaps) reduce your Yellow page spend. Keep good track of the effect. If you see a significant impact on bookings, investigate and make sure that's due to Yellow Page advertising and not something else.

My bet is you can eliminate Yellow Pages and never notice the difference.


Answered 4 years ago

No. Yellow pages, unfortunately so, are a dying utility. Especially as a small hotel, it paints a very specific image as to the type of establishment you are. If I were seeking a place to stay for the night, the place I saw in the yellow pages would be the place I avoided at all costs. Marketing is needed, but you need to be a bit more specific with they type of crowd you are trying to atract , and aim your marketing towards such. Of course yelp is a great place to start, or any tech-based platform. It's great because, well yelp for example is unfiltered. You have no control over the type of things that are publicly said about your establishment, In-turn if you are confident in your business and the service you provide, the business will speak for itself. People are actually getting pretty serious, as A "Professional Yelper" is a real thing now, I even consider myself to be a bit of one. Some reviews mean more than others, and can create quite a bit of traffic. It's pretty easy to get set up now'ah day's, as well as cost efficient . I can think of a million and one different marketing strategies for a small hotel, and the yellow pages isn't one of them.


Answered 4 years ago

Just one answer on this – NO. There are many alternatives nowadays as channels to market your business. To find the right channels, you will need a lot more background info from your target audience and a clear picture of your strategy backed by real data first.


Answered 4 years ago

The Answer Is: YES

But only online yellow pages and directories.

You want to make sure that your exact location data (name/address/phone/website URL/etc) is exactly the same across all major national directory sites as well as any local ones.

This includes industry trade sites, local city directories, social media sites, business profile sites, and national directory sites.

You can hire a consultant to execute and manage all of this for you or you can use DIY services like Moz Local that charge a small fee.

It alot of work and these sites are not typically very easy to navigate and deal with. So often times its worth it to hire a professional to handle it for you. Just make sure that they give you all the logins to the sites that you get accepted to.

And also remember that this is just one step, one piece of the puzzle in executing a successful search marketing effort.


Answered 4 years ago

Use a dedicated phone line for the yellow pages ad and then you can see the volume to know if it pulls any traffic or not.


Answered 4 years ago

no, its low ROI. Check out YEXT for the price they cross list your brand all over in a big way. Big time saver.


Answered 4 years ago

I don't believe in the Print Yellow Pages anymore but YP is an amazing company. Listings are critical to a hotel marketing effort and we have a powerful proprietary system to manage this very inexpensively. So look at YP's overall system. If this is not a good fit for you let me know. We can provide you a free report for how you are doing now and what you can do to improve.


Answered 4 years ago

I think the most important first question to ask yourself is "has it been paying off for you in the past?" If you have been getting customers in the past from it (an older age bracket, local businesses looking for meeting space, local residents that need a place for family members or local businesses that host outside contractors ) then it continues to be worth the spend. May of the groups I wrote there can also find you on line, so you need to be able to qualify and quantify if the leads have been coming from the Yellow Pages. If, it hasn't worked for a while (and I suspect it hasn't been earning its keep if you're asking) then it's time to let it go.
If you do find you are missing a certain type of traffic that it gave you, you can always bring it back. But if you decide to let it go I would take that spend and direct it towards the type of customers you were hoping to reach in a type of outlet that those customers frequent.

Your marketing strategy and spend should be based on are you reaching the target audience via that channel? Is that channel relevant to that audience? If yes - continue. If not - find another channel to try. Hope that helps. I'd like to hear what you chose to do. Best wishes to you. Happy marketing.


Answered 4 years ago

You may want to talk to a Certified Marketing Representative (CMR), which is an agency or broker authorized to place yellow page advertising across many directories. I used such a service many years ago (pre-Internet) and found the advice to be valuable and rates to be lower. They should be able to offer some good advice -- but will definitely be biased toward actually selling you ads. A conversation may offer you some good points of information one way or the other.


Answered 4 years ago

My question is, why don't you spend the majority (if not all) of your marketing budget where your consumers eyeballs are? Right now, people are on their smartphones 95% of the day. Get your business online and on Social ASAP and stop waisting money on print. UNLESS your demographic are 60+ (they can still be reached on the older mediums). But get on social and do it right. Start off with a good VBM (Value Based Marketing), directly target your audience on FB, build awesome content, get a budget, and kick off. I recommend Instagram being another social medium to jump into. they're user base is growing exponentially.


Answered 4 years ago

Yes. But get away from the traditional ad. If your ad looks like everybody elses then it is practically useless. If you can't afford a yellow page ad then you are doing something wrong. People still use yellow page ads or they would not continue to sell. Try focusing on your own USP in the ad. Why would I stay with you. You can take this same concept and use it in other media. Best of luck.
Mike


Answered 4 years ago

No. No. No. The only, highly rare scenario in which you'd bother with this is if you have a current stable and verifiable base of bookings flowing from Yellow Pages, fueled likely by a generation target marketing strategy in line with the product and service offering at your hotel. So in short... no, no, no.


Answered 4 years ago

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