Yahoo To Take On Google And Facebook With Mobile-Ad Platform
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is looking to unleash a major mobile-ad platform that will rival with big players in the advertising industry, including Google and Facebook.
Sources familiar with the matter told The Information that Yahoo will announce a self-service for marketers that will let them place ads in major mobile apps via its Flurry network. According to the report, Yahoo plans to do so at its inaugural mobile developers conference in February.
Yahoo had set out a strategy for generating revenue from ads as Mayer previously said that Yahoo is a “mobile first company.” As part of that strategy, the company acquired Flurry for around $200 million last summer.
Flurry is a platform that focuses on the mobile app analytics, monetization, and advertising. It has an extensive mobile app network which includes major app publishers, including The Guardian and games developers such as Pocket Gems and Glu.
Now as The Information reports, Yahoo plans to merge Flurry with its ad buying platform Gemini. Until now, Gemini has been offering ads on Yahoo’s own properties like Yahoo News and Yahoo Finance. But if the rumors are true, this movie would expand Yahoo’s ad platform further and take it to non-Yahoo websites — those using Flurry.
If Yahoo wants to take on big players like Google and Facebook, it can’t rely on its own content platforms alone. The company needs to step out of its own platforms so it could reach out to a wider audience. Although Yahoo’s own web properties are still popular in terms of visits as reported by comScore, these platforms do not provide as much audience to make Yahoo compete with Google and Facebook.
This is where Flurry comes in to offer it a wider and more attractive audience from already popular and growing apps.
Yahoo’s major part of revenue is generated by advertising. According to its recent quarter earnings, the company made $200 million in mobile ad revenue, that makes 17% of its total revenue. Emarketer, a market research company, believes that Yahoo will overtake Twitter to become the third biggest player in US mobile advertising market in 2015.
Yahoo is predicted to take 3.74% share of the US mobile ad market in 2015, which is still far behind Google and Facebook, which are estimated to have 35% and 17% share respectively in 2015. But Calif.-based tech firm is gradually pursuing them and it started by acquiring startups like Flurry and BrightRoll (a video advertising platform).
Mayer has often been criticized for acquiring young startups that do not payoff immediately. These startups have not added much value to Yahoo’s core business in their first few months, but if Yahoo begins to make meaningful revenue by combining Flurry with Gemini platform, Mayer might be able to quieten some of her critics.