When many people think of the Yellow Pages with those iconic “walking fingers”, they often give the book a single finger and throw it in the blue recycle bin. But the Internet version is miles apart from its medieval grandfather. Yellow Pages United serves as an example that testifies to the unique inter-personal possibilities and business partnerships that emerge and grow from this all-in-one directory / marketing platform. It is also an amazing tool for growing business partnerships, and inspiring friendly competition.
Hear it From a First-Hand Account
Before I started writing for a living, I was the VP of a well-known scuba diving business, and was well on my way to take over as president and owner. Part of being successful is to know your local competition so you can out-do them (or so I thought). The scuba diving market I was attempting to corner was statewide, and not just limited to my city. I went online and did a Google search, and up popped my competition in the Yellow Pages. While I was visiting their websites and noting their prices, a customer walked in and asked for a Scubapro regulator (we only carried Sherwood). In the diving industry, businesses are generally prohibited from offering multiple competitor products. When I tried to sell him a Sherwood, he said he had used Scubapro for 20 years and wasn’t about to change brands. I then felt compelled to help the man find what he wanted, and told him to visit my competitor a few towns away who was a Scubapro dealer. I phoned my competitor to let them know this customer was on his way. Then a light went off in my head and I turned to the Yellow Pages, and called all of my competitors. Before I knew it, I had struck up a deal with every single one of my competitors to refer customers to each other if we didn’t have a certain brand or product in stock. Not only did sales go up by 40% that quarter, all the dive shops got together and did “fun dives” and new friends were formed. Yellow Pages made this possible, as it is the best directory not only for consumer use, but also for business owners to turn to when reaching out to the local competition to keep it friendly, and prosperous.
In an article published by Warrior Forum the author examines the question: is friendly competition in business a good or bad thing? The article points out that without competition, business is usually slow and stagnant. Also, friendly competition keeps business owners on their toes, and encourages them to think outside the box. The author addresses a pretty common goal: putting your competition out of business. But this, he writes, is bad for business. If you push your competition out of business then you will have to triple your advertising budget and time to get the same lead flow and sales numbers that you are currently recording. In other words, competition is good for business.
Do the “Walking Fingers” Offer a Helping Hand?
Yellow Pages United is one of the largest online directories, and it is tied in to Google, which gets 1 billion daily searches. When reaching out to encourage friendly competition and shake hands over a proposal to keep a local niche Markey thriving, Yellow Pages United is a great resource that will help in bridging companies, and building friendships that last a lifetime.