Yahoo Announces Evolution Of Newspaper Consortium With Search Distribution

Yahoo has expanded its newspaper partnerships to 12 newspaper publishing companies, with 264 newspapers across 44 states. Out of mutual necessity, the relationship originally coalesced last November around a partnership with Yahoo HotJobs, but there was clear expansion potential. Yahoo now becomes the exclusive paid-search provider to the participating papers, and both sides will apparently be selling each other’s traffic and reach. Former KnightRidder newspaper exec, now Yahoo SVP, Hilary Schneider is a key figure in this evolving relationship.

Accordingly, the company announced some more formal details of how the relationship is evolving today. The full release is below, and I’ve posted thoughts on my blog.

Yahoo! and Newspaper Consortium Expand Strategic Partnership

Combines Strength of Newspapers’ Unique Local Content and Relationships with Yahoo!’s National Reach and Advanced Technology to Create A Cutting-Edge Advertising Network for the Newspaper Industry Yahoo! to be Newspapers’ Exclusive Paid Search Partner and Bring

High-Quality Local Newspaper Content to its 150 MM Monthly U.S. Visitors(a)

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Apr 16, 2007 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq:YHOO) and a group of 12 leading U.S. newspaper companies today announced a definitive agreement that expands a growing partnership combining the newspapers’ unmatched local news and advertising reach with the leading technologies and audience of Yahoo!, the leading global Internet brand and one of the most trafficked Internet destinations worldwide.

With the addition of The McClatchy Company and four other new members since November 2006, the newspaper group now stands at 12 newspaper publishing companies. This represents a critical mass of more than 264 newspapers across 44 states, along with multiple distribution channels that will benefit advertisers, readers and the participating companies.

“This ground-breaking partnership creates the newspaper industry’s first full-fledged integrated online advertising network and significantly expands consortium members’ Internet presence,” said Robert W. Decherd, chairman and chief executive officer of Belo Corp. “The consortium continues to gain momentum and will play a central role in the emerging media landscape.”

The strategic partnership revolves around four key opportunities:

– Enhancing newspaper online advertising revenue using Yahoo!’s graphical advertising technology. For more than a decade, Yahoo! has been a leader in online graphical advertising. Advertisers and newspapers will be using Yahoo!’s sophisticated ad-serving, targeting and inventory management capabilities. This strategic alliance creates the newspaper industry’s most comprehensive and integrated online advertising network.

– Leveraging leading local and national online sales forces. This relationship creates an all-in-one buying opportunity for local advertisers, allowing newspaper sales representatives to offer the combined aggregated reach of local newspaper and local Yahoo! online audiences. Yahoo!’s sales force may sell newspaper inventory to their portfolio of national advertisers and newspapers’ sales forces can sell Yahoo!’s local online inventory to local advertisers.

– Integrating Yahoo!’s paid search technology across newspaper sites. Yahoo!’s search functionality will be deployed across hundreds of newspaper Web sites and exposed to more than 50 million users on a monthly basis. Additionally, users will benefit from having access to a customized Yahoo! toolbar which will be distributed on local newspaper Web sites, providing newspaper Web site users with easy access to the most comprehensive Internet search.

– Distributing high-quality newspaper content broadly across the Yahoo! Network. Newspaper content will be fully integrated within local news modules and delivered to Yahoo! users interested in local news, sports, finance and other content in Yahoo! vertical areas. This will give readers superior local content developed by credible news professionals and community contributors across the country. Additionally, this strategic partnership paves the way for mobile distribution of newspaper content.

“The continued expansion of our relationship with the newspapers will deliver a best-of-breed local experience for advertisers and audiences,” said Sue Decker, executive vice president; head of Advertiser and Publisher Group, and acting chief financial officer, Yahoo! Inc. “By working with top-notch, well-respected media companies, this relationship represents another step forward in our strategy to build the most robust ad network on the Internet.”

The number of members working with Yahoo! in the group has nearly doubled since its formation in November 2006 when it announced an agreement to enable the newspapers to post their jobs on Yahoo! HotJobs. Today, the consortium includes more than 264 papers across 44 states. The consortium members’ newspapers have a combined Sunday circulation of 18.5 million, and their Web sites attract a combined total of more than 50 million monthly unique visitors.

“This milestone deal represents far more than an advantageous, win-win business deal for Yahoo! and participating newspapers — although it certainly is that,” said Gary Pruitt, chairman, president and chief executive officer of McClatchy. “The consortium also demonstrates that our members recognize this plan delivers significant benefits to our advertisers and readers, starting almost at once. We expect other newspaper companies will be joining in the near future, and they will be welcomed as allies whose participation will increase the benefits we can deliver,” Pruitt said.

The McClatchy Company is among the latest newspaper groups to join the consortium, currently participating in all aspects except the HotJobs component. Other new members since November 2006 include Calkins Media, Inc.; Media General, Inc.; Morris Communications Company, LLC; and Paddock Publications, Inc.

Consortium members announced last November include: Belo Corp.; Cox Newspapers; The E.W. Scripps Company; Hearst Newspapers; Journal Register Company; Lee Enterprises; and MediaNews Group, Inc. The newspapers in this consortium include major market dailies such as the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis), The Dallas Morning News, The Denver Post, The Florida Times-Union, Houston Chronicle, The Miami Herald, New Haven Register, Rocky Mountain News, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, The Sacramento Bee, San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury-News and The Tampa Tribune.

Related Topics: Channel: SEM | Yahoo: Partnerships | Yahoo: Search Ads

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About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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  • http://www.gotostrategic.com Chris Parente

    Interesting announcement. What are the analogies here to IYP, Greg? Is the brand danger less to newspapers b/c quality local news is much harder to produce than local business listings? Therefore end users will also id the news with the paper, not Yahoo?

    Chris

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