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Geraldine Wilson on Yahoo!’s Mobile Strategy

Geraldine Wilson, Yahoo! Mobile Strategist kicked off the content stream of next08. Yahoo! believes that within the next 10 years more people will access the web via a mobile device than by desktop computers. And thats why Yahoo! puts quite some effort into developing mobile applications, is teaming up with other players in the field to offe advertisers a growing mobile audience. Wilson predicts the quite obvious (at least to Yahoo!) when she stated that mobile devices will be the most important advertising channel in the near future.
She argued that the obstacles of creating meaningful mobile user experiences are about to disappear as flatrate pricing allows users to afford the always-on state of using the Internet. To Yahoo! mobile devices are becoming the key means of reaching users in almost any aspects of their life. As connection speeds keep increasing and usable devices are thrown on the market (Think iPhone!) that make using the Internet on the go as easy as carrying a newspaper, the future of advertising lies in the mobile worlds: Anyplace, Anytime and Always-on. It is all about the „A’s“ – did I mention Advertisements?…
Yahoo!’s current and future mobile strategy follows 5 key principles:

  1. Reach: Building reach is key to Yahoo!s strategy and they are teaming up with partners because they believe that it is not going to be one single player who will rule the mobile market! I asked myself: What about Google?
  2. Targeting: Targeting individual users with costumized and individualized content and advertisement is pretty much a commonplace here.
  3. Formats: The standardization of ad-formats and the development of new formats is another area Yahoo! is working on. I asked myself how creative do you have to be to annoy users, and how creative do you have to be to really serve the user meaningful things? No real answer here!
  4. ROI Yahoo!’s research and marketing guys are constantly working on case studies to measure the success of the company’s effort on the mobile market which directly relates to the last key principle…
  5. Metrics: Advertisers want numbers! One number is 40%! According to Wilson 40% of the targeted audience for the new Renault Twingo responded to the campaign via mobile. But what does that mean? Is it hard facts ot just flipping around with numbers?

Bottom line: The future (of advertisement) is mobile! …at least according to Yahoo! What do you think? Where is the mobile Internet and mobile ad-selling within in next 10 years?

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