On a daily basis we’re inundated with predictions, theories and hypotheses as to the fate of Yahoo!. Everyone has a right to their opinion and they’re happy to weigh in with slightly less certainty than we’d expect from a Magic Eight Ball. The only common theme among these forecasts seems to be that the acquisition by Microsoft is a forgone conclusion.
I’m not ready to abandon the Yahoo! ship just yet. There’s a nostalgia there that you’re simply not going to find any place else. I grew up with Yahoo!, as did many of my generation. It was my first real email address, the first portal I made into my homepage, the first thing I realized could be used to waste countless hours at work. Oh the memories we’ve shared…but I digress. The point is that it pains me to see the vultures circling above my long-time friend, squabbling over who gets the first chance to disembowel him.
So I’ve composed this letter to Yahoo! CEO Jerry Yang to show my support in his battle for independence:
Dear Jerry Yang,
Long-time user first-time writer. I hear you’re in a bit of a tight spot, but I want you to know, all is not lost. I’ve taken the liberty of devising a plan that should turn things around in no time flat:
- Open an AdWords account. It’s quick, it’s easy and it’s free. Once you’re in there take a good look around. It’s pretty intuitive but if you have any trouble just let me know. Now that you’ve got the hang of it, make Yahoo Search Marketing look exactly the same. I know it’s a hard pill to swallow, but it could be much worse… take MSN for example. Oh, and while you’re there, download AdWords Editor; you’ll need one of those too.
- Build a comprehensive social network interface. Think about it. Wouldn’t it be great if you only had to go to one place to create profiles, check messages and just plain “network”. You’ve already got seemingly dozens of social sites under your hat and with Facebook’s open source apps I’d think someone on your staff could figure out a way to integrate them all. You’d own the social network scene.
- Slash and burn the services. This might sting a bit, but I think it’s necessary. Let’s really look at your core demographic. According to Hitwise it’s 18-34 year olds without a lot of money. Now that we know that, let’s purge what we don’t need: Finance, Travel, Shopping and Real Estate would be a good start. When’s the last time you went to Y! to search for BtoB, really? Sell what you can and scrap the rest. This will allow focus to be on what you do best.
Implement these three simple steps and you’ll be well on your way to mooning the proverbial giant. There are a lot of us out here pulling for you Jerry so chin up and don’t let us down.
A loyal Yahoomaniac