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Can You Afford to Drop the Yellow Pages?

Kirkpatrick Creative, an advertising agency representing law firms, says probably not.

Not surprisingly, it seems that print yellow page phone books still work. Usually, when a new form of media arrives on the scene, it doesn’t replace another form of media but just adds another dimension.

One caveat is that I’m not sure how long yellow page phone books will continue to be printed. But as long as they are printed, they will probably still work.

Unfortunately, for lawyers who don’t have an enormous budget, adding more and more avenues for advertising just makes it more and more expensive. If your law firm can’t afford to advertise in every type of media, you’ll have to choose which ones work best for your law firm or area of practice.

Kirkpatrick Creative said of 15,408 leads generated for their clients during the last three years, 43% came from the printed phone book. —And that’s as of August 2016!

Most interesting is that Kirkpatrick Creative said that more than one third of phone book leads came from paid phone book advertising. The interesting part is the corollary — almost two thirds of those leads came from free listings in the phone book.

This shows that if your law firm doesn’t have a budget for advertising, you should at least take advantage of free listings in the phone book. If your law firm has a large budget, don’t rule out the Yellow Pages and make sure your law firm is listed in the white pages.

If your law firm budget can afford it, paid yellow page phone book ads should still be a serious consideration but your ad has to stand out.

I only like the back cover but whether you’re on the back cover or inside the phone book, your ad should be designed by a professional yellow book ad designer, not the yellow page salesperson. Ask your advertising agency to have it done for you.

Use of a vanity phone number is also important because of its impact and branding.

This is an example of a professionally designed yellow page phone book ad that has many features designed to make the phone ring.

Professionally designed yellow page ad

Some of the important design elements in this yellow page ad are:

  • Top headline says “Local Lawyers Working for You”
  • Use of a vanity phone number across the top as a prominent feature for branding
  • Tells the reader to call anytime, day or night
  • Tells the reader why they should call, to “Know Your Rights & What They’re Worth”
  • Use of the headline Accident Central with more information in the box
  • Professional photo of the partners
  • Displaying the vanity phone number again at the bottom of the page
  • Displaying a numeric local phone number at the bottom right of the page

Also apparent from Kirkpatrick Creative’s data is the fact that people look for lawyers in the Yellow Pages and in the white pages for lawyers whose name they know.

While people are still using the printed phone books, they also use online yellow page directories. Make sure your law firm is listed in online yellow page directories and attorney directories.


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