Yahoo Strikes Broad Search Deal With Viacom

In a multi-year, wide ranging deal Yahoo will provide paid search and contextual ads to 33 Viacom-owned sites, including MTV.com, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central. This is a nice win for Yahoo and an endorsement of Panama and related technology and there’s no mention of Google anywhere, but it partly also has to be seen as more salt in Viacom’s wounded relationship with Google.

Postscript from Danny:

1) The release talks about this involving 33 "broadband" sites, which suggests there are regular sites not covered in this.

2) The release makes talk about how "ads will be powered by Yahoo’s newly launched search marketing system, known by its project name "Panama"." That suggests Yahoo might be doing a white-label deal similar to what Google just announced with AOL for AOL Marketplace. However, I don’t think this is the case.

Instead, this seems to be Yahoo simply providing search ads coming out of its search ad system, in the way it has long had partnerships getting search ads. That the new Panama system is involved isn’t that big of a deal. It’s only being used because it IS the Yahoo ad system.

The only reason to mention Panama, frankly, feels like a means of giving investors some spin that Panama is making this possible. It’s not — as said, Yahoo’s had deals like this before pre-Panama.

3) It’s unclear who was powering search ads for Viacom before. For example, I can see that in search on Comedy Central like here, Yahoo sponsored ads are already showing. Maybe the deal was instantly implemented. Or more likely, there was already some partnership in place.

I’m checking for more and will postscript when I know. See also related coverage at Techmeme.

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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