Yahoo's chief executive Marissa Mayer appears to be on course to turn around Yahoo, a company many took for dead not long ago. A review of recent interviews indicates Mayer's vision for Yahoo "is about making the world's daily habits more inspiring and entertaining." Mayer also has been telling us that Yahoo is developing technology intended to personalize content from the Internet and make it accessible to people on their mobile devices.
Whatever she's doing appears to be working. On January 28th Yahoo released its quarterly report, posting positive revenue growth for the first time in four years, surpassing Wall Street's profit expectations.
"With the web becoming so vast, there's so much content and there's so much social context, and now with mobile, there's so much location context and activity context," Mayer said. "How do you pull it all together?" The answer appears to be the development of "a feed of information that is ordered, the Web is ordered for you and is also on your mobile phone."
In a recent interview on Bloomberg TV Mayer discussed Yahoo's mobile strategy.
I think that there's a real opportunity to help guide people's daily habits in terms of what content they read. That is something that we are really working on. All of these daily habits - news, sports, games, finance, search, mail, answers, groups - these are all things we have been under invested in. A little love will go a long way.
So the nice thing at Yahoo is that we have all of the content that people want on their phone, we have these daily habits. And I think that whenever you're dealing with a daily habit and providing a lot of value around it, there is an opportunity not only to provide a lot of value to the end user, but to also create a great business.
Speaking of daily habits, Mayer isn't shy about telling anyone who will listen, that Yahoo helps power searches made by Siri used by millions on their iPhones and iPads. Mayer makes it clear Yahoo will be aggressively seeking to improve its search results as part of its effort to improve performance again Google. Yahoo search is one part of the company Mayer has indicated is in urgent need of an upgrade, along with Yahoo Mail and the Yahoo.com homepage.
Where Yahoo goes from here is yet to be seen, but it's feeling like the company is on an upward trend. Maybe I've just been suckered in by Mayer's enthusiasm. What do you think?