Is Yellow Page Advertising On The Endangered List?

The new phone book arrived yesterday. I picked it up off the ground where it had been dumped in front of the mailbox. This morning I dumped it in the recycling bin along with the plastic bag it came in made from 20% post-consumer recycled material. I love irony.

I don’t know about you, but I can’t be bothered to use a phone directory or yellow pages any more. An online search is better and more complete. In the past, pre-internet, I spent tens of thousands of dollars in yellow pages advertising for a self storage business. Yellow page advertising worked, then.

I thumbed through the yellow pages of the new directory. The display ads are much smaller and the number of display advertisers is a fraction of the past. The self storage facilities are still advertising, as well as the roofers, the plumbers and the ambulance chasing lawyers. I wonder if advertisers are testing the effectiveness of their dollars spent on yellow page advertising.

If you’re using yellow page advertising, you may want to ask prospects and new customers how they found out about you. I used to do it with new self storage customers. It was 40% drive by, 40% yellow page ad and the remaining 20% was word of mouth and “other”.  Since most horse businesses don’t have prime drive-by locations, most likely your new business is coming from word of mouth, searches leading to your website or yellow page ads and other.

Like the old yellow page slogan suggested, “let your fingers do the walking” is good advice. However, most consumers are letting the finger walking occur on a keyboard in a Google search.

The One Course In College Equine Programs That Should Be Required

I recently asked a college equine program class of 2014 graduate what was the most important thing she learned from her four years. She answered, “Liability-meaning promoting safety and matching horse and rider properly.” I followed up with what’s the course you wanted to take, but didn’t? She was quick to answer, “Sports Psychology-it wasn’t offered.”

A course of study preparing a professional horseman or horsewoman for a career working with equestrians ought to have a course in sports psychology as a requirement. Most client problems are the result of their inability to work through their fears, mental blocks and fluctuating levels of self confidence. While studying equine behavior is important, human behavior is twice as important.

The rider is an athlete just as much as the horse is. Too often in the case of a discouraged rider, the instructor would be far more effective with a proper knowledge of sports psychology. The successful professional knows that training the rider requires a strong knowledge of human psychology to help maintain the student’s mindset as well as maintain the professional’s sanity.