Why? Besides getting one of the new darling websites AllTop, Yahoo would gain the company of one of the top tech evangelists–Guy Kawasaki. Imagine what he could do to revitalize Yahoo’s image.
What an exciting challenge that would be.
What are the things he might do? Well, I guess it would depend on what arrangements Yahoo might make with him. Might they encourage him to keep going with his investments? Not a bad idea. Maybe Yahoo could even throw in a percentage in exchange for a stake.
What might Guy do to advocate Yahoo advertising content? Can’t you see him twittering and talking with site owners making the case to run Yahoo ads? Imagine the value of the feedback he could gain and give back to the engineering teams.
And can’t you envision him helping to showcase flickr to a larger audience or communicate via TV interviews and the like the value of Yahoo mail or Yahoo news or Yahoo Finance? He’d be a natural–because he is a natural.
The synergy is obvious to me.
Of course, the odds are that Guy would say no, but then again maybe if Yahoo throws in an ice rink and a couple autographed hockey shirts from his favorite teams….hmmm
Update: A couple people have messaged me saying they don’t get it. I guess the hockey shirt idea isn’t obvious enough :-).
Well, forget the shirts, let’s just focus on the web sites. Currently, with AllTop, Guy and the Nononina venture are all about listing top blogs and sites on the Net. Like any directory (which by the way is part of the DNA of Yahoo), the directory is a destination in itself as well as a service that drives traffic to each of these sites. The site owners can see the results. They see that traffic is coming from AllTop, which means they already have a relationship with AllTop and indirectly Guy. I mention Guy specifically, because since AllTop was launched you can see him on Twitter interacting with people, looking for good sites, advocating the AllTop site itself. You can see him building relationships. OK. So Guy has what looks to me like the foundation for a good relationship with these top sites. Now, what’s often as important to these sites as the traffic AllTop can help them get? Ad revenue. And this is where the tie in with Yahoo might come in.
It’s not just AllTop sites where this type of approach could be used. There are many others. I’ll leave it to you to make your own mental suggestions.
And finally, what’s in it for AllTop? Joining Yahoo would help AllTop grow far beyond where it is now both in traffic and in terms of a business model. Again, makes sense to me.