Yahoo’s Big Mobile Ad Play Is Coming
Marissa Mayer plans to take mobile ads beyond Yahoo's own network in a bid to grab market share from Facebook and Google.
It’s no secret Yahoo has been setting its sites on mobile. The company, under Marissa Mayer’s leadership, has been taking steps to build up its mobile capabilities and began reporting on mobile ad revenues separately in Q3 2014. The Information now reports that the company has been beefing up its mobile ads team and will announce an overhaul of its mobile ad products at a developer conference in February.
In that Q3 earnings report, Yahoo showed mobile earnings accounted for 17 percent of total revenue and projected $1.2 billion in annual mobile revenue through 2014. Since then, the company began integrating access to inventory from Flurry — the in-app ad network and analytics platform Yahoo acquired in July — into its ad platforms, began offering app install ads across its network (including Tumblr) through Gemini, its mobile search and native marketplace. and closed its acquisition of leading video ad platform, Brightroll.
In August, Yahoo expanded reach for its native Stream Ads to third-party sites with Yahoo Recommends.
EMarketer projects Yahoo will push past Twitter to third place in US mobile ad market share with 3.7 percent of an estimated $28.5 billion market in 2015. That share is dwarfed by Google’s 37 percent and Facebook’s 17.6 percent, but shows positive momentum and a bright sign that the company’s efforts to pivot from its lagging display ad business is starting to pay off.
The Information article says the focus in coming months will be on giving advertisers more reach through bundling:
A major part of Yahoo’s mobile strategy will be selling access to bundled ad campaigns across owned and operated properties, such as its and verticals like Yahoo Sports, as well as non-owned mobile apps.
Currently available through Yahoo Ad Manager Plus, which encompasses display, stream ads, mobile, search video and display ad inventory. The Information reports that the bundling will be available through Gemini, which currently only offers ad targeting on Yahoo-owned and operated sites.
Yahoo has yet to spell out its plans for integrating Brightroll, but already touts itself as the “largest provider of video ad inventory in the industry”. We can expect Brightroll — which claims 6,000 mobile web and app properties in its publisher network — to factor in to Yahoo’s efforts to carve out more mobile share from Facebook and Google.
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