Marissa Mayer May Have Borrowed From Google To Fix Yahoo's Ad Revenue Problem

Marissa MayerMarissa Mayer

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer may be overhauling Right Media, its big display advertising exchange, and using Admovate to do it, according to Adweek. That’s news because a few months ago, the rumour was that she might sell it and rely instead on Google to place ads on Yahoo‘s various media properties.

Right Media does not have a great reputation in the ad business, judging by its press clips. Adweek calls it “deeply flawed” because it offers a lot of junk inventory that no one really wants. “Right now, it’s a necessary evil,” one buyer told Adweek. “It’s cumbersome, work-intensive, nontransparent, lower quality and less targetable than we want.” Until recently, Yahoo inventory wasn’t being offered in real-time bidding exchanges via Right Media, according to AdExchanger.

Display ad revenue declined 11 per cent, ex-traffic acquisition, to $423 million in Q2 2013. Yahoo lost its lead in display ads served back in February, to Google and Facebook.

That all suggests a display ad business in trouble.

And yet, Yahoo just told Adweek it continues to invest in Right Media, and along with its new mobile ad acquisition Admovate, “you will see more from Yahoo in the coming months.”

Admovate was such a little known company it’s not clear what its capabilities are. The Admovate site was shuttered upon its acquisition. Scott Burke, Yahoo’s SVP/display advertising did not describe exactly what Admovate does in his announcement of the deal.

Recently, however, Yahoo revamped the Right Media work interface, and according to one source who’s seen it, “It looks exactly like Google’s,” Adweek reports.

Maybe, just maybe, Right Media has been fixed.

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