Sense & Respond: Yahoo Launches Big Brand Universe

Yahoo! may have a lack of focus with regard to many of their properties, but they seem to be focused like a laser in launching a new strategy to engage media’s biggest brands online, with or without their participation.  Using their “sensing” muscle, Yahoo! has identified more than 100 properties that are the most popular, or fastest-growing, with its users.   Yahoo!’s “response” action is to begin building what it calls a “brand universe” Web site around each one.  Set to launch throughout 2007, they will bring content from throughout Yahoo!’s network into one destination for fans.

This is a really smart move for Yahoo!.  The inclusion of two social media heavyhitters (Flickr & Delicious) make the site much more authentic with users.  It’s co-creation without having to ask the customer to create anything.  Finally, it’s a destination that will satisfy most any search request.

The first “universe” is live and it’s for Nintendo’s new Wii console.  The site is a fantastic mash-up of Yahoo! properties including:

  • Flickr for fan photos
  • Yahoo! Games for articles, reviews, forums, and user videos
  • Yahoo! Shopping for purchase options including an in-stock tracker for web stores
  • Yahoo! Answers for user Q&A
  • Del.icio.us & MyWeb for links to outside articles

They hope to partner with the companies behind the properties it selects to obtain extra content and potentially send some traffic their way, but the “brand universe” pages won’t hinge on their cooperation.

Yahoo! isn’t revealing the properties it has selected beyond the Wii, due to the sensitivity of ongoing talks, but names like “American Idol” and “The Lord of the Rings” are almost certain to be among them.

Source: Variety

Go to the Yahoo! Wii site here.

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