A Social Media Lesson from Idearc Media?

Regular yellow pages topics Deets commenter (check back to Feb. 2009), Mike Stewart, appears to have lost his job over his unauthorized online behavior. He offers up an insider’s view on some of the challenges Idearc faces in their attempts to keep print relevant while also competing on the web.

Personally, I wish Idearc the best going forward. I am no longer with the organization after 10 years due to my inability to conform. I don’t think such a large agency will ever put the client first and foremost before profits. Idearc is accustomed to high margins from the print business, and you just can’t do that with Local Search (we all know that Google, MSN, and Yahoo make all the REAL $$). In web marketing you must become an authority. Idearc is not in the business of creating authoritative websites online, other than its www.Superpages.com, www.LocalSearch.com, and www.Switchboard.com sites. If they did they would have already upgraded all the sales reps to IE7 from IE6, put an emphasis on content collection, search engine optimization, social media, and the 9 million other things that local search marketing agencies manage do discuss with local small medium businesses.

The whole thing is worth a read if you’re into departing soliloquies.

4 thoughts on “A Social Media Lesson from Idearc Media?”

  1. Ed, thanks for the pingback… actually the reasons for why I am no longer with Idearc are complex. It was a choice we both made. Idearc’s management team in Texas simply did the deed. I am sure my activities online did not help the cause. I apologize for the departing soliloquy but I wanted to make sure that readers understood my position prior to the opinion.

    I know we may have different opinions on the subject of print yellow pages distribution (and we must simply agree to disagree) but I feel that if folks have a better understanding of the companies challenges they will understand what the company has to offer in the marketplace (and investors like myself will be better protected against bad investment decisions).

    As an employee you have faith in your company. I have faith that Idearc will continue to offer great products and good service to local business owners, I just don’t believe that with the goal of providing a good return to investors the company can at the sametime provide a good return to advertisers. Margins are too dependant on doing too little for so much. Idearc is not capable of providing the client focused approach that it intends to. Reason being is that fullfillment departments and sales consultants are disconnected. You won’t see a group of strategizers meeting at a conference table to discuss ideas and ask questions anytime soon. Idearc is coming out of bankruptcy and focused on showing profitability in December. All this is my personal opinion, but I believe you will find this to be true based on the nature of the industry.

    Cheers and keep up the good work!

    Mike Stewart
    http://www.dallasseoguru.com <—————— now I have time to build a site…. haven't touched it since the old days of Google Page Creator!

  2. There is a lot of good that can be done for America’s small businesses by those who leave the yellow pages industry.

    We are insiders forever–in that we know what products are most useful and which ones are crap…we know how to help them save money on yellow page ads if we want to show them that…we are no longer under the gun to increase percentages of ad sales even if it means bankrupting their companies.

    You speak the truth when you say that it is not possible to “provide a good return to investors the company can at the same time provide a good return to advertisers.” No truer woods have been spoken on this topic.

    Mike, maybe now it is your turn to be a RobinHood…

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