Yahoo Presses Fight to Ease Digital Ad Buying

Yahoo this morning unveiled deals with Wal-Mart and ad agency Havas Digital, along with a new product designed to capture retailer spending on print circulars. The initiatives are intended to support the company’s mission to ease the process for creating and purchasing display ads, and in the process dominate the non-search digital ad market.

Yahoo said it will work with agency Havas Digital to develop a media “trading practice” using Yahoo’s Right Media exchange as a backbone. In exchange, Havas said it will bring more ad buyers and sellers to Right Media’s media marketplace. The relationship will also involve the creation by Havas of an outsourcing program based in India and Brazil that will use the Right Media Exchange as a backbone. Details about that initiative weren’t available at press time.

“The combined capabilities will allow Havas Digital clients to execute highly segmented media buys on a mass scale,” Havas Digital CEO Don Epperson said in a statement.

Yahoo’s deal with Wal-Mart gives it exclusive reseller rights to display ad inventory on The multi-year relationship includes video as well as traditional graphic ads, and will eventually join Yahoo’s AMP ad management platform, which is currently in trials with a group of the portal’s newspaper consortium partners.

Yahoo also launched a program geared toward capturing a portion of retailer spending on print circulars. The new product, called Yahoo Circulars, will be developed with content from ShopLocal, which offers its own “online circular” ad unit previously adopted by partners like, PointRoll, and DART Motif. Yahoo will seek to add further value by adding “personalized promotions” to its visitors, most likely by adding behavioral and contextual targeting layers.

During a keynote this morning at the Advertising 2.0 conference in New York, Yahoo President Sue Decker said recent news coverage of the company’s Microsoft foibles have failed to mention the important work her company’s doing to advance the display ad market.

“Every day there’s another headline, and the headline has nothing to do with the products and services we’re bringing to market,” she said.

She characterized those products and services this way: “First, we are developing the technology, products, and platforms that are designed to help advertisers find the right audiences and publishers find the right advertisers. Second, we are partnering with publishers to secure and monetize inventory that advertisers and agencies find desirable. And third, we are partnering with advertisers and agencies to channel demand to the right consumer.”

Yahoo also crowed this morning that its newspaper consortium had added 94 new paper partners, bringing its total number of partners to just shy of 800. How much of their inventory Yahoo will be entitled to sell remains to be seen because consortium members have separately entered discussions with quandrantOne, which is powered by Collective Media.

Related reading