Got Ads?
  Yahoo Ad Strategy and Overture APIs

Finally, some coverage of the Yahoo API launch that focuses on the Overture APIs. This article makes some nice points such as:

If the search engines' pay-per-click ad services were restaurants, Google would be McDonalds: fast and cheap; Yahoo would be Chili's: serving a limited number of patrons, offering a wide variety of higher-priced meals and not promising you a table.

Fun analogy, but just not very accurate... The rest of the article contains several questionable points brought up in support of this thesis that Overture is not really self serve.

"With Google, your ads are running within 10 minutes. With Overture, it takes a call or an e-mail to a sales rep. There's a bit of a hurdle getting in," said Jupiter Research analyst Gary Stein.

Huh? Since when do you have to call Overture or even email them to get ads running? While Google often gets ads running faster, Overture approvals usually happen automatically in under 24 hours. I've argued before that Overture is actually easier than Google for smaller advertisers, as well since relevancy is not a factor in positioning.

This breakdown of revenue makes no sense to me either:

In 2004, Yahoo made more than $3 billion in marketing revenue. Yahoo doesn't separate contributions from its Overture division, which it acquired in 2003. But Gartner analyst Denise Garcia estimates that Overture pay-per-click ads contributed around 20 percent of its revenue in 2002.

Is 2002 the latest data Gartner has? PPC ads were barely a factor way back then. They weren't even a part of Yahoo and they created 20% of revenue. Imagine what they are doing now that they've been folded in. Personally, I think it's very likely that Overture contributes 40+% of Yahoo's profits to the bottom line. It's undoubtedly the most successful and underrated corporate acquisition of the internet age.

Finally I wonder if this quote was worked in to fit with the story line:

"Yes, Google captures all of the small advertisers, and Overture has traditionally done better with the bigger advertisers," Stein said. "On the other hand, Google has had a really bad reputation for customer service, whereas Overture has a dynamite reputation. They're very responsive to problems; if you're extremely sophisticated, they let you alone; if you're new, they work with you. That takes a lot of resources, but these are bigger accounts."

Google captures all of the small advertisers and Overture does better with the big advertisers!?! The "long tail" may be long, but it couldn't explain why Google's revenue is $4B and Overture's is what, a 1/3rd of that? Is there any evidence that the largest spenders are under-represented on Google? I think Amazon, eBay, NexTag,, etc are spending much more on Google than Overture... As for the "dynamite" reputation of Overture, I wonder where that comes from? I don't think Overture has a bad reputation, but I've never heard it described as "dynamite" either...


Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Subscribe to GotAds?


Recent Posts

Yahoo Ad Strategy and Overture APIs


February 2005 /  March 2005 /  April 2005 /  May 2005 /  June 2005 /  July 2005 /  August 2005 /  September 2005 /  October 2005 /  November 2005 /  December 2005 /  January 2006 /  February 2006 /  March 2006 /  April 2006 /  May 2006 /  June 2006 /  July 2006 /  August 2006 /  September 2006 /  October 2006 /  November 2006 /  December 2006 /  January 2007 /  February 2007 /  March 2007 /  April 2007 /  May 2007 /  June 2007 /  July 2007 /  August 2007 /  September 2007 /  October 2007 /  November 2007 /  December 2007 /  January 2008 /  February 2008 /  March 2008 /  April 2008 /  May 2008 /  June 2008 /  July 2008 /  August 2008 /  September 2008 /  November 2008 /  December 2008 /  January 2009 /  March 2009 /