Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Yahoo! and Las Vegas: struggling in the desert
Spent a few days in Las Vegas enjoying a wonderful suite at Mandalay Bay for roughly the price of a room at the Red Lion in Bakersfield. The place was a ghost town and what tourists I did see had distinctly Slavic accents. How can Serbs afford to travel in this recession? Also had a chance to hear Carol Bartz, the new Yahoo CEO speak before a group of newspaper executives. (800 newspapers have partnered with Yahoo to sell behavioral targeting ads) Bartz is impressive, tough as nails, and she needs to be to pull Yahoo out of the also-ran doldrums. There's some cool stuff on the horizon, including new social networking applications and opening up the Yahoo platform to YouTube, Twitter and Facebook, as well as Flickr which Yahoo owns. Yahoo believes the cell phone is the single most powerful application of the future, and already there are more than four times as many cell phones as any other single device. Watch also for Yahoo to continue to partner with newspapers to go deep into local content (think high school sports) with applications for the cell phone (think posting pictures of your kid's prep baseball game via your phone).