Yahoo’s Bartz Promises Movement on Ad Products and Revenue

Yahoo’s Carol Bartz hinted at new offerings for CPG advertisers and the long-awaited transition to the APT ad serving platform this morning at the company’s annual meeting for investors. Repeating the firm’s recent “science, art, and scale” mantra, Bartz promised investors the company will deliver when it comes to driving revenue and better monetizing ad inventory.

Bartz said Yahoo has been actively marketing its display offerings to advertisers and agencies, but more surprising, said the firm has been running product tests on behalf of consumer packaged goods advertisers. She hinted that Yahoo is helping CPG advertisers better understand how online activity informs real-world shopping behavior.

“We’re very, very immersed with some customers in how to marry the online/offline experience,” she told the investor audience. “CPG is getting very interested in these things,” she continued, adding that Yahoo can set up product sample trials at scale with two million consumers rapidly. “We’re out there testing that; we’re out there marketing it,” she said.

Bartz also hinted the company will unveil new display ad capabilities later today during the investor event. “You are going to see special creativity, special art for online advertising,” she said. “Not enough creativity has gone into what the medium will allow,” said Bartz, lamenting that currently online advertising is not creative enough and often simply mimics print or other media creative.

Yahoo’s mentioning of its APT display ad serving platform has been noticeably absent in the past year or so. However, it appears the company is ready to make it a more prominent discussion point again. “A lot of the new optimization of inventory, pricing can only take place in this new platform. The old one is too old,” Bartz said. The “old” one, for instance, cannot handle guaranteed and non-guaranteed inventory together.

The new platform – which allows partners to optimize between guaranteed and non-guaranteed inventory – is being used by about 200 partners including Yahoo’s newspaper publisher partners. Bartz said APT will be rolled out entirely in the U.S. by the end of the year and globally by mid-2011.

The update, as she put it, “Means real money.”

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