Gone are the days when Yahoo was best known for its search technologies. With Google having this particular market in apparent lockdown, Yahoo has been forced to research other avenues that are ripe for innovation and expansion. TFM&A; gave its attendees a chance to learn about some of the company’s latest releases during a brief presentation by Jon Myers, Yahoo’s director of account management for the UK and Ireland. Read on to discover the most important…
This new solution is part of the company’s Audience Match offering, an advertising feature that enables Yahoo to target adverts at certain demographics. Proximity Match takes this a step further and targets consumers depending on where their home is in relation to an advertiser’s store or location. Myers felt this to be, "critical to the success of [its] clients’ direct-marketing campaigns".
CORE Data Visualization
CORE stands for Content Optimization and Relevance Engine, and it’s the mechanism Yahoo uses to personalise its homepages for certain users. One of the more interesting snippets of information to be disclosed was how much Yahoo tailors content on its news feeds depending on who’s browsing. During the Meredith Kercher trial, for example, different articles on the subject were displayed to fathers, daughters and young professionals. There can be 4-5000 iterations of Yahoo’s homepage within minutes, proving that a staggering amount of customisation goes on behind the scenes.
The new CORE Data Visualisation page gives anybody the power to sift through demographic data and discover the most popular news stories among different groups in real-time. It’s currently available for anybody to view.
Another way that Yahoo is hoping to innovate is through its unique advertising solutions. The Shuffle Box comprises three modules that are capable of being opened individually. Yahoo provides an array of modules for the advertiser to choose from, and it’s hoped that the increased interaction between the ad and its user will drive awareness, conversion and brand loyalty. The company is currently demoing a Kung Fu Panda example of the technology on its website.
Yahoo has taken this idea of creating unique ways to showcase brands and run with it. The company’s 3D Brochure functionality is another variation on the theme, and it has been conjured up with brands who want to wow their users in mind.
Financial constraints can often prevent a brand from developing interactive media for online as well as designing a unique advertisement for print. Yahoo believes that 3D Brochure is the answer for those companies who want to convert their print ads into eye-catching online material. MediaMarkt is used as an example of how 3D Brochure can be implemented.
With the purchase of IntoNow, Yahoo hopes to break down the social boundaries that television can sometimes create in our modern world. The iOS and Android app is able to recognise the program that you’re watching and feed information about it back to you from the internet, enabling you to discuss your viewing choice with friends using social media. Myers believes that IntoNow allows Yahoo to integrate, “offline, online and the social space”.
The iPad has changed the tablet game, and Myers was keen to point out that Yahoo has a history of prioritising this field. One example of how the company “develops for glass before PC” is the latest iteration of Yahoo Mail, which was designed for the tablet first and then eventually rolled out for the desktop.
Developed from the ground-up by Yahoo, LiveStand is the company’s answer to Flipboard: a personalised magazine app for the iPad. Its purpose is to deliver the best content from Yahoo’s writers, editors, and video producers, as well as its partners. LiveStand ties in with Yahoo’s other innovations, too, making use of the aforementioned CORE technology for tailoring content to the individual.
Yahoo Contributor Network
Yahoo’s Contributor Network is an online soapbox allowing writers, photographers or videographers to share their thoughts with the world – though cynics would say that it is merely a means for Yahoo to produce content for its websites on the cheap. While this may or may not be the case, Myers believes that the Contributor Network makes it possible for clients to, “put their brand in the hand of influencers”. That could be an important tool for advertisers looking to reach unique audiences in 2012.
While not a completely new concept, Yahoo hopes that the data-gathering Social Bar will be one of many innovations in its advertising armoury to be successful this year. The Social Bar sits at the top of Yahoo News and provides users with article suggestions based on their friends’ reading activity, the power to automatically share recently read articles to their Facebook feed and the ability to view articles that their Facebook friends have recently read. Full control over sharing stays with the user, but the data garnered from this feature will no doubt be pumped into the CORE engine in order to enable Yahoo to target content even more effectively.
Google hasn’t particularly warmed affilates’ hearts in recent times with the release of Panda 3.3 and its Search, plus Your World. Could all this innovation from Yahoo help it make a mark on the performance marketing industry and give affiliates another place to ply their trade?