First Google, then Yahoo. This is a seemingly big trend in the industry lately. Two weeks ago, Google decided that it would begin expanding its ad base to newspapers, and now Yahoo seems to be doing the same thing — only bigger (and this time, I think better).
Earlier this month, Google launched an advertising initiative that would enable advertisers to bid for newspaper ads. The trial was rolled out this month to 50 major daily newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. Advertiser names were not released but only a small percentage of Google’s advertiser base was part of the initial run.
Yahoo is taking this to the next level. Instead of 50 newspapers, Yahoo expanded this number to 176. Their advertisers (Cox Enterprises, Hearst, and the MediaNews Group, among others) produce publications in 38 states. Yahoo also intends to begin advertising jobs, expanding their HotJobs community to these publications. Since such a large percentage of people are always considering a career change, I think this is a very practical and strategic move on Yahoo’s part.
Not everyone agrees. In fact, a lot of people are citing Craigslist as being in the forefront of online classifieds — an 11-year old community website that already facilitates such communications. But how many times have I heard that Craigslist does not satisfy the needs of all users — or even reaches all users? Many times — from both sides. I don’t think there will ever be a “newspaper to rule them all” (or a classifieds site either).
There are other options out there, but nobody is saying that this partnership is going to be the only option or even a replacement to existing options. People like knowing that if they can’t find something somewhere, they can look elsewhere to find it. By localizing its results in the job arena, among other classifieds, to newspapers, Yahoo! is making this possible and much easier.