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Apr 7, 2008

NEWS: Yahoo Reveals Details of Its New Ad Sales System - Conversation Flows

Ed: Conversation flows from New York Times to Techmeme and on...

Yahoo Reveals (Some) Details About Its Ad Plans
February 26, 2008, 9:27 am
Yahoo Reveals (Some) Details About Its Ad Plans
By Saul Hansell, New York Times


AMP will link together the ad inventory of those publishers, offering advertisers the ability to buy search, display, local, mobile or video ads, Yahoo said.

Publishers have a couple problems with the way they sell ads now, Yahoo said in a preview of the system. When an advertiser approaches and wants, for example, 2 million impressions for a campaign advertising a new car, the publisher must use their ad systems to find out if they can deliver that many impressions. The process can take up to 15 minutes, which Yahoo describes as slow.

If the publisher can't deliver that many impressions, they must look to other Web sites to share in the deal. That typically involves phones calls, which starts another slow process by another publisher to see if they have inventory and can deliver a certain number of impressions, Yahoo said.

AMP wraps up the ability to see others' available ad space as well as a publisher's own through a Web-based interface, speeding up the ad placement process. Yahoo also describes it as a stock market for ads, with competitive bidding, as well as the ability to do behavioral, demographic and geographic targeting.

Yahoo Reveals Details of Its New Ad Sales System  
By MIGUEL HELFT Published: April 7, 2008 SUNNYVALE, Calif. — Yahoo is beginning to pull the wraps off an online advertising system that the company said would help it and its partners drive sales of graphical and other premium ads.

Jim Wilson/The New York Times

Yahoo executives Hilary Schneider and Michael Walrath.

Yahoo said the system, called AMP and still months away from being ready, would greatly simplify the task of selling online ads, allowing Yahoo’s publishing partners, for instance, to place ads on their own sites as well as on Yahoo and on the sites of other publishers in the company’s growing network. Advertisers will be able to focus those ads by demographic profile, geography and online behavior, the company said.

Yahoo is developing the system as other Internet giants, including GoogleMicrosoft and AOL, are all stepping up their efforts to become sellers and brokers of all types of ads on sites across the Web. Many analysts expect Google, which recently completed its acquisition of the ad-serving specialist DoubleClick, to begin making inroads into the market for graphical ads online, which Yahoo dominates.

“This gives Yahoo a little leadership in vision,” said Rachel Happe, an analyst with IDC, a consulting firm. But Ms. Happe noted that Yahoo’s last big advertising project, a platform known as Panama and intended to reach people searching the Internet, was plagued by lengthy delays. She said it would be “problematic” for Yahoo if it were not able to deliver AMP on time.

Yahoo executives first discussed the new system publicly in February at an Interactive Advertising Bureau meeting, calling it the Advertiser and Publisher Exchange. Yahoo executives, trying to convince shareholders that a bid by Microsoft to acquire the company underestimated Yahoo’s worth, said the new system would help Yahoo outpace the growth of the online graphical advertising market over the next three years.

Yahoo has begun showing the system to publishers in its newspaper consortium, which includes hundreds of daily and weekly newspapers. Those newspapers are slated to become the first users of AMP, which Yahoo expects to begin rolling out in the late summer or in the fall. The New York Times Company’s Regional Media Group, which includes 15 newspapers, is a member of the consortium.

“Yahoo clearly has put a full-court press on developing this platform,” said George B. Irish, president of Hearst Newspapers, which owns 12 dailies that are part of the Yahoo consortium.

“I think it’s going to be very important for us,” said William Dean Singleton, chief executive of MediaNews Group, which operates 57 daily newspapers in 12 states. “Giving us the ability to sell targeted online advertising will allow us, I think, to charge more for advertising online.”

Hilary Schneider, Yahoo’s executive vice president for global partner solutions, said that AMP was “about opening Yahoo’s capabilities to the entire Web.”

With AMP, a newspaper ad sales representative working with an advertiser, like a car dealer, would be able to easily see the ad space available on not only the newspaper’s site but also Yahoo and other Web publishers’ sites. The sales person could slice that inventory by demographic profile to, for instance, aim ads for a new hybrid S.U.V. to females of a specific income and age group. The system will help streamline a manual and time-consuming effort, Ms. Schneider said.

The system, which was built out of a combination of technologies developed at Yahoo and others Yahoo obtained when it bought Right Media, BlueLithium and other companies, will also serve ads directly to publishers’ sites and allow marketers to monitor their performance.

AMP’s targeting capabilities could, in theory, help Yahoo and others sell ads at higher prices, said Barry Parr, an analyst with Jupiter Research. But Mr. Parr noted that Yahoo has had difficulty focusing ads effectively on its own site and that AMP’s effectiveness remained to be proved.

Miguel Helft / New York Times:
Yahoo Reveals Details of Its New Ad Sales System   SUNNYVALE, Calif. — Yahoo is beginning to pull the wraps off an online advertising system that the company said would help it and its partners drive sales of graphical and other premium ads.  —  Yahoo said the system …


Yahoo launches ’stock market for ads’, ZDnet

In a nutshell, AMP will allow partners to buy search, display, local, mobile and video inventory from one interface. This all sounds Google-dashboard-ish doesn’t it? One key difference is that Yahoo is leveraging its newspaper partnership to compile inventory and target regions and demographics. It has 600 newspaper publishers signed up for AMP. Yahoo said it will be opened up to partners, agencies, ad networks and other small publishers.

amp1.pngThe key takeaways:

  • Advertisers can select audiences across multiple sites and networks, work in mass and niche campaigns and manage their online spend.
  • Agencies can use AMP to target and buy media, connect AMP to their back office applications and examine data.
  • Ad networks can bolster their supply across inventories and connect to AMP via APIs.
  • Publishers can manage inventory and create private networks.

amp2.pngAMP, which used to be known as Project Apex, will roll out in phases in the third quarter. Others will be looped in through 2008 and 2009.

Ed: Who leads the conversation? Who follows? Flow over time for Long Tail impact and depth of discussion versus superficial lifestreams.

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