10 Million!

directory handI’m standing next to my mailbox, directory in hand, sunlight glistening from the giant gold embossed Diamond Certified symbol. The bright sunlight splashes down on me. I’m happy. My brain, sending joy-induced heat to its surface, partners with the faraway sun to warm my face from both sides. The number 10 MILLION dances through my mind with images of the last 15 years. I see the faces of owners of top rated companies, consumers I’ve met and my team members who’ve done the work every day to reach this significant milestone. TEN MILLION: that’s how many directories we’ve published and mailed to consumers in the Greater Bay Area—consumers who care about quality, have the incomes to afford it and seek out top rated local companies.

directory graphAlthough we started rating companies in 2001, we didn’t launch the print version of our directory until 2004, with an annual April directory of 200,000, which at that time was divided into four geographic zones. Over the years, it has grown in popularity. It’s funny that here in the Internet age, people still like something they can hold on to—something they can keep on their table that lets them turn pages. Something tactile. Something real. And, of course, they actually use it a lot. Tracked calls to Diamond Certified companies have more than doubled in the past four years, reaching a record 128,370 in 2015. We’ve given Quality Consumers more of what they want: access to information about local, top rated companies with more digital options and the growth of our print directories. More Diamond Certified more often.

10 Million Reasons Why We Don’t Change the Cover
Friends recognize you because they recognize your face. When Quality Consumers see their blue, yellow and red directory with the distinctive gold embossed Diamond Certified symbol on the cover, they recognize the face of a trusted and very helpful friend. Yes, it costs a lot to create this high-quality color directory with the special embossed, quality-signaling cover. It’s why Quality Consumers like to keep the book in their homes: out on a counter, in view and handy. It looks good and reminds them and their visitors that they care about quality and use local companies who do as well. And every time they walk by their directory, they’re reminded of quality Diamond Certified companies and the influence of your Diamond Certified status grows (if you qualify).

Jim Stein, Founder and CEO

About Jim Stein, Founder and CEO

Jim Stein is the founder and CEO of American Ratings Corporation. Through his interactions with more than 6,000 local companies and analysis of over 1 million consumer survey responses, Jim has developed easy-to-understand strategies for consumers to enjoy consistently positive customer experiences and for companies to better satisfy customers, increase referral rates and reduce customer attrition.
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