The Drum Awards Festival - Official Deadline

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March 18, 2016 | 3 min read

Yahoo has today unveiled an update to Yahoo Mail that transforms links sent within the email service into visual-rich eCards without having to leave the document, the same week as it underlined the value of its ad stack BrightRoll at this week’s IAB Tech Fronts in the UK.

A blog post on the Yahoo-owned Tumblr revealed the updated service – dubbed “Rich Link Previews” – that gives email recipients a snapshot of the content their correspondent is trying to share, is being extended to audio and video content.

The preview service also means that correspondents can share information from websites including authors of articles, hotel prices, logos for top sites, and more when they share a URL, all from within the mailing service.

The new service is available for Yahoo Mail desktop users from today in the US, and will be rolled out globally soon, with the launch coming as the company’s UK arm underlined the merits of its ad stack BrightRoll to advertisers as part of the IAB Tech Fronts event series.

Speaking with The Drum on the sidelines of this week’s proceedings, Dora Michail, Yahoo, senior director of audience solutions, said the online giant hopes to prove a point-of-difference in the market by the unique nature of its data set.

She also said it was the “media agnostic” nature of its offering that should woo advertisers, as well as the cross-device targeting capabilities of its offering.

“Our data is unique when you think about the social signals we have from our assets [i.e. social blogging site Tumblr], plus we have multiple data points across devices,” she said added.

Michail went on to mention that Yahoo has been able to match 89 per cent of its UK audience across devices, and that its “holy trinity of tech, data and content” was very much its pitch to market.

Although Yahoo would lie within the classic “walled garden” definition of ad stacks, Michail was keen to highlight that it was open to working with third parties; indeed it has deals in place with third parties to better enable advertisers to target their media campaigns.

For instance, Yahoo has data matching arrangements with companies including Adobe, Experian and a host of others that will let brands cross-reference their CRM data with Yahoo’s own to identify areas of overlap, which they can then use as areas of insight to further hone targeting.

“We’re open to third party vendors, both DMP [data management platforms] and others such as viewability and content audience verification,” added Michail.

Yahoo was participating in this year's IAB Tech Fronts events

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