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ASK THE MAM — VANITY NUMBERS

DEAR MAM: I just read your response to the NY man who was asking about online law directories. I am just starting to market an 800 vanity number and want to know what are your feelings on vanity numbers?
SINCERELY YOURS, KK, Santa Ana, CA

DEAR KK: Much like domain names, my first and often last question in response to a vanity phone number is “how intuitive is it?” Naturally, I see no value in a 1-800-ANTITRUST for a corporate law firm. However, for many plaintiffs’ firms, a vanity number that resonates with the consumer can have tremendous value. Of course, it needs to be part of a solid, overall marketing plan. I often pass billboards for PI firms that highlight ridiculous phone numbers and web addresses. So ridiculous that I can not offer up an example, because they are so “not memorable.” A number that sticks in my head after I get out of the car, or turn off the radio or TV, is a winner. That is the question you need to ask yourself. And when purchasing a vanity number from a third party (not the phone company), you should take a hard look at the cost versus the potential benefits. Thanks for writing. Sincerely yours, THE MARKETING ATTORNEY