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Published: July 17, 2012 at 10:58 PM GMT
Last Updated: July 18, 2012 at 10:58 PM GMT
Watch Jack Myers' MSNBC interview with Krystal Ball and Toure at http://nbcnews.to/Ph9mTh
I have never met Marissa Mayer. Her reputation, however is unimpeachable and she needs no endorsement from me.
Her singular achievement at Google was the design and implementation of products that:
· produced inventory at near zero cost of production of the next marginal impression
· data driven products that matched those impressions to intent
· matched that intent to high yielding advertiser transactions.
At Yahoo! she certainly has impression volume and a somewhat efficient mechanism for producing low marginal cost inventory but lacks the silver bullet of the end to end data suite that brings intent and yield together. The question is, does that exist outside search both as a product and as a behavior which yields data that lends the same characteristics to display?
Closing the per impression yield gap with Google is a problem common to Yahoo! and Facebook and both through the partner agreement recently executed have social triggers to analyze that my prove to be somewhat analogous to search driven intent. This remains a case not proven but the potential is clear but may not be enough.
Beyond this newest of mechanisms Yahoo! needs to think a little old media as well. In all media there has been always been a premium for reach and also a premium for video over other communication forms. Here Yahoo! needs to be more effective in packaging that reach and using its extensive video assets to provide incremental or better value video reach sold against, or alongside television. Given that there is little evidence that television is going away Yahoo! may also be well served by acting as the best friend to that industry, applying its sub-prime inventory to the singular task of generating more on air ratings for broadcast and cable programs that monetize at a higher rate that online video. Perhaps Yahoo! will become a network affiliate for a new age closing at least some of the revenue gap by sharing in the revenues generated by the next marginal GRP it delivers to the television industry.
From the perspective of the advertising industry we need a strong relevant Yahoo! and we need it even more if it can support audience development in the most effective branding channel in our locker.
So the challenge has four components; keep the audience coming and coming back; closing the data and yield gap with Google; finding the partners (advertisers and media companies) that can most receive value from the immense inventory pool and finally find a vision that balances audience and data that inspires a team that can find the corner office but is constantly surprised at its occupant.
Rob Norman is a member of the GroupM Global Executive Committee and is CEO of GroupM Interaction Worldwide. Rob’s principle tasks are developing the interaction organization within GroupM, developing positioning and thought leadership and leading the interaction contribution to business development. Rob can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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