Global Print Directory Market Continued Growth

(Via the MediaPost blog and the Kelsey Group press release)

According to The Kelsey Group’s Global Directories Forecast 2007, advertising revenues from print Yellow Pages, Internet Yellow Pages and Local Search will grow from $30.6 billion in 2006 to $38.9 billion globally in 2011, representing a 4.9 percent compound annual growth rate. The forecast expects the print Yellow Pages segment of the global directories marketplace to grow from $26.5 billion in 2006 to $27.8 billion in 2011.

Charles Laughlin, senior vice president and program director, The Kelsey Report, said “Bucking the trend of some other traditional media, the global print Yellow Pages market will grow slightly through 2011, driven by aggressive and innovative publishers.” The online segment is expected to grow from $4.1 billion in 2006 to $11.1 billion globally in 2011, a 22.3 percent compound annual growth rate.

Neal Polachek, senior vice president, The Kelsey Group “Our outlook for Internet Yellow Pages and local search is supported by our annual research of small and medium-sized business advertisers… While (small and medium-sized businesses) continue to utilize traditional media, they are increasingly turning to targeted, vertical electronic media.”

Thumbnail Summary from the Report (U.S. $):

  • The global print and online directory market is expected to grow from $30.6 billion in 2006 to $38.9 billion in 2011.
  • Global print revenues will be $26.5 billion in 2006 compared with $27.8 billion in 2011.
  • Global online revenues will grow to $11.1 billion in 2011.

In the United States:

  • Internet Yellow Pages with traditional sales channels will grow at 30.7 percent (compound) through 2011.
  • Internet Yellow Page revenues will grow from $624 million in 2006 to $2.3 billion in 2011.
  • Local search revenues will increase from $922 million in 2006 to $2.6 billion in 2011 .

What it means: according to the Kelsey Group, the print directory business will continue to grow in the next four years. I’m not surprised. It’s still a great business. I’m obviously biased but directory publishers have tremendous assets: sales force, usually a great brand, distribution, users and advertisers. It’s a great ecosystem! If you operate in the local search space and you brand yourself as a “Yellow Pages Killer”, you’re missing out on major opportunities to partner with these guys.

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