NEW, TIGHTLY-TARGETED ADVERTISING FOR YAHOO
Advertising that’s firmly focused on the audience’s needs and interests is said to be the best kind. So unsurprisingly Yahoo has high hopes for their new search-advertising software, Project Panama, which goes live this summer.
Yahoo’s own research is supported by estimates from outside experts that with Panama in operation the company’s search-advertising revenue will leap by 20 percent immediately, bringing in $125 million in this year’s final quarter and $600 million by the end of 2007.
It has taken Yahoo since 2003 – when it bought out Overture Services, the company generally credited with inventing search-advertising – to rebuild the software involved to fit its own freshly-overhauled search machinery. The delay came in part from a major re-jig, more daunting than first expected, as technical staff wrestled with ensuring that advertisers could reliably present search users not just with text but with graphics and video as well.
In the run-up to the product launch, Yahoo Search’s open-plan offices in Burbank, California are bedecked with signs reading Panama Are You Ready? It’s not just a rush to counter the effect of delayed deadlines. Yahoo needs to contend in the market place of innovation with Google, who can count on enormous attention flowing from the annual May Press Day at their Mountain View headquarters. This year Google touted several new services, in particular “Google Co-op,” which will carry content created and annotated by users. Co-op will be rolled out for two subject areas, health matters and city guides, but eventually will cover 16 such separate categories.