yellowbook rebrands (and even adds some utility)

Yellowbook, the former Yellow Book, has re-branded itself. No, I am not sure what the difference is either, but the brand says that it is supposed to be sleeker to position it as a “forward-thinking, innovative digital force.”

The new tagline “say yellow to the future” is apparently going to further this goal.

A new ad campaign by Gotham is helping to support the re-branding and get the digitally-focused super-futuristic look out there.

They just don’t want to get it too far out there…the spots are not on YouTube yet. Instead, they are housed at the completely unhelpful and difficult to navigate corporate website right here.

The key change, and the one that is best positioned to help Yellowbook moving forward, is the newly designed print directories and redesigned user interface at because, let’s be honest, difficulty of use is the major reason that most people skip the yellow pages these days. It’s just easier to type the name into Google.

No advertising campaign, no matter how good (or, in the case of the current campaign by Gotham, no matter how much it over-promises) can overcome the fact that Yellowbook has just been tough to use.

The paper phone books are bulky and annoying and the brand blew its position as “grand compiler of information” by letting search engines steal a march on it.

I remember clear as day when I first started searching on the internet how I used to go to places like to find things and was frustrated by how difficult it was. Then Google came into my life and I have never been back to a yellow pages site.

If Yellowbook can fix the utility issue and make their product something that consumers actually want to use, then they have a chance at success. If they can’t, then this campaign is just throwing good money after bad.


5 responses to “yellowbook rebrands (and even adds some utility)

  1. Take a look at your yahoo and google results a liiiiiiiiiilttle bit closer next time. You will see that 65% and some times more results for a local product or service on the first page of google come from companies like and other local IYP (internet yellow pages) putzy. What you don’t understand is that google and yahoo don’t have a local sales force that goes to mom and pop shop down the street to add them to thier data base….. how ever all the yellow page companies do (Yellow Book or yellowbook…whatever) being the largest in the country. The use of IYP’s (again like is increasing at a high rate because people are starting to recognize that these IYP sites not only are the ones they end up in when they click over from the first page on yahoo and google but also have the most up to date info. Thiers not rumblings that Google wanted to buy Yell in Europe because they wanted to own them and Yellow Book and produce yellow page books but rather they wanted thier local sales force and data base.

    Look into it… you might actually sound like you know what you are talking about.


  2. @ J – the point that I was making, that you unfortunately missed, is that sites like yellowbook, yellow pages, etc missed their chance to BE Google, not just a Google result. Before Google and Yahoo, where did you turn to find stuff? The phone book! Before Google and Yahoo were big, where did you turn online to find stuff? The phone book websites…only to find that they sucked and were hard to use.

    Now the phone book websites are merely top responses to Google searches and not the actual search engine. Which they could have been. And what I was lamenting that they didn’t become.

    Thanks for the comment though. I always appreciate snark, even if it was misguided in your case.

  3. After I saw the new yellowbook commercials, which for some reason keep airing on Discovery Channel, TNT, TBS and not on any major networks ( someone explain that!?) I went to, and found it was actually really easy, user friendly and accurate. I don’t know what it was like before because I always used, but then I found out they were owned by Verizon and it was harder to get accurate results because of all the paid ads coming up on top and were not even that relevant to my search. ANYWAY, I like the new ads…you have the hot babe in one, and the cute kid in the other, with the futuristic overtone…the ads are big winners. Go!

  4. I think the ads are great. I actually had a visit from a rep to my business who showed me the commercial on YouTube on his Blackberry. Very impressive. To answer the google issue he told me that Yellowbook does offer a fully managed google and yahoo program and since I don’t have a website they even offered to build one for me for free.

  5. Hey Folks!! is a snowball going downhill! I predict that the coming few months will see a tremendous increase in on-line lookups and that will gain a tremendous serge in on-line searches. You will also see an increase, not a decrease in print sales for Yellowbook as they gain a stronger foothold in the yellow page market due to better price for return on investment for their clients and a streamlining of a stronger and more educated and proficient sales force. The day of the door to door sales force is again upon us and Yellowbook can be the delivering force!

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