Each year I expect that the delivery of my Yellow Pages print directory will surely be the last. I appreciate that at least you can now go online (yes note online!) to request that one is not delivered, but it is an interesting phenomena witnessing the decline of an outmoded product format.
It is not surprising to see references, by online competitors to a recent Yellow Pages Print Directory Attitudes Survey where 58% of Australian’s, if given the option, would choose not to have the Yellow Pages Print Directory delivered to their home (Core Data Research). How big the survey sample is I do not know, but based on the number of directories delivered in my inner city Melbourne suburb of St Kilda that do not seem to make it past the front door step, or are transferred directly to the recycle rubbish, then I suspect the results are some what conservative.
There are many product formats that come and go over time, but what magnifies the Yellow Pages print directory demise is that every time a new directory arrives, you cannot help feel for the impact it is creating on the environment. The number of trees that go into the paper and the emissions expended by all those responsible for delivering the directories adds up to an unnecessary burden on our fragile environment. Add in the efforts in recycling those discarded and all of a sudden you have a brand expression that seems immensely problematic.
One cannot however knock the tenacity of Yellow Pages’ desire to remain in print directories. They are also now producing a smaller format version for in the car. A neat little innovation for those without smart phones, but I would still love to know how many actually make it from the door step to the glove box.
As a brand Yellow Pages would win a lot more points if it had a system of opting in for a directory, rather than the need to opt out. If it devoted its energy to the online space and minimised the sheer wastage, not to mention the visual pollution of discarded directories. Yellow Pages has been a super brand in its time, but it has to reinvent itself. Fast!
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