Yahoo is buying Associated Media and its federation of 380,000 writers (Posters) who according to ComScore generate 16M monthly uniques. Yahoo is paying $100 million for the ability to advertise to Associated’s audience and the deal also includes some technology which allows for the monitoring and prediction of reader content proclivities. This is a big move for Carol Bartz, Yahoo CEO, and shows she is putting money into the content strategy.
I look at content portals like Yahoo and AOL a little bit like big retail malls. A good portal, like a good mall, has lots of tenants but there is always what is called an anchor tenant — a big store that draws in lots of people. In my view, this $100 million play is more about finding an “anchor” tenant (or ten) among Associated Media’s writers who will propel Yahoo’s numbers upward, rather than a crowd sourcing effort to generate mass. It’s like putting a seine net in the ocean to catch krill but finding some big fish. Yahoo needs next generation big fish. Big Posters. It’s a very expensive move, but should work for them. The portal story, IMHO, is about quality not quantity. But that’s just me. Peace!