One of the major myths surrounding Yellow Page usage is that younger consumers do not use the print Yellow Pages, as well as the claim that, without this younger demographic, Yellow Pages directories do not deliver value to small- and medium-sized businesses. However, a recent study by the Local Search Association, previously known as the Yellow Pages Association, has proven that this myth is just that. The study involved talking to 1,500 U.S. consumers from ages 18 to over 55 and asking them where they looked for information when they needed it most. Researchers also determined what consumers did once they began searching in a Yellow Pages directory. Here are the results:
Younger Consumers DO Use the Yellow Pages
The first finding of the study was that, while consumers use many different sources to find telephone numbers depending on their needs, the group that looks up more phone numbers than any other group also uses the print Yellow Pages more than any other age group. While it may seem a bit surprising, researchers found that 25-34-year-olds are the biggest users of the Yellow Pages.1
Younger Consumers Contact Local Businesses from the Yellow Pages
After determining that 25-34-year-old consumers use the print Yellow Pages more than consumers of any other age group does, the Local Search Association did some follow-up research to find out why these consumers referenced the Yellow Pages more than any other source. Their answers were surprisingly consistent: younger consumers use the Yellow Pages to search for a local business instead of one across town or across the state.
What Drives Younger Consumers to Use the Yellow Pages
When it comes down to it, the main factor that drives younger consumers to use the Yellow Pages frequently is life changes. The Local Search Association discovered that 25-34-year-olds experience more life changes than any other demographic group does, and therefore reference a print directory more than twice as frequently as consumers not experiencing life changes do. For example, the study found that this age group is most likely to move to a new city and that people who have moved two or more times use the Yellow Pages weekly nearly twice as often as those who have not moved. 2
While many people have believed the myth that younger consumers do not use the Yellow Pages frequently, the Local Search Association has recently discovered that this could not be further from the truth. Their recent study confirmed that consumers between the ages of 18 and 24 find the Yellow Pages to be the most useful and trusted resource when they need to find a local business the most.
1Local Search Association: the Pierz Group; National Consumer Research 2007