Verizon Media sets out ‘Advertising for Good’ agenda at 2021 Showcase

Verizon Media sets out ‘Advertising for Good’ 2021 agenda

Verizon Media has doubled down on efforts to build up the media and marketing industry, as it sets out its 2021 plans across its editorial and technology platforms.

Verizon Media is driving the ‘Advertising for Good’ agenda through all aspects of the business, from its independent Yahoo editorial mastheads, market-leading buy and sell-side trading platforms, and best-in-class data solutions. 

Paul Sigaloff, Managing Director ANZ, said: “Advertising for Good isn’t just some airy philosophy but the way we’re approaching the world at Verizon Media. It’s the evolution of our approach which has helped to deliver massive growth across our entire business despite all of the headwinds of 2020. 

“How we show up as a company has never been more important because audiences and marketers are thinking more closely about the brands they support and the messages they are putting into the world. Our unique blend of culture and code - with the rapidly-growing Yahoo editorial platforms and our world-leading ad tech solutions, means we have a responsibility to ensure we are having a positive impact on the world.”

During 2020 Verizon Media has experienced strong growth across all key metrics, with an

  • 11% increase in monthly active users across editorial brands
  • +6 point increase in employee engagement
  • Double digit year over year revenue growth against a market that has fallen -23% (Jan-Sep 2020) * SMI industry bookings
  • #1 net promoter score for digital media owner (MediaI October Survey)

Key announcements for 2021 include:

Yahoo Finance Australia to partner  with Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global APAC

Yahoo Finance Australia is in talks to become the media partner to behaviour change technology platform Thrive Global APAC. Under the new deal, founder and CEO of Thrive Global and founder of The Huffington Post Arianna Huffington will  become a guest columnist for Yahoo Finance Australia and contribute stories on purpose and wellbeing. Yahoo Finance Australia editor-in-chief Sarah O’Carroll will become Thrive Global APAC’s contributing editor, and will share bi-weekly stories for global senior C-suite leaders on the importance of wellbeing. The partnership will open up a wealth of content across the platform focused on mental health, purpose and wellbeing.

Yahoo Finance Australia Editor-in-Chief Sarah O’Carroll welcomed the partnership, saying: Since I first heard about Thrive Global I immediately thought its vision and purpose very much aligned with Yahoo Finance's. Yahoo Finance already helps our readers take control of their finances, but what we’ve learned in 2020 more than ever is at the end of the day, your health is your wealth. This partnership will help us bring even more practical steps to our readers to help beat burnout and find balance.

The partnership comes off the back of two years of staggering growth for the Yahoo Finance brand which has gone from 263,000 monthly active users in July 2018, to 2.3 million in July 2020. 

Sarah O'Carroll commented: “Over the last two years we’ve really taken a focused approach in creating a brand which provides useful content for our readers interested in securing their financial future. We’ve been captivating our audience through breaking stories, the Women’s Money Movement, our Breakfast Club online series, the Broke Millennials Club and our pinnacle event the All Markets Summit. It’s been an absolute mammoth of a year but an incredibly rewarding experience for our readers and team and we look forward to continuing the momentum into 2021.” 

New Yahoo Lifestyle & Yahoo Sport content initiatives shine a light on what matters

Simon Wheeler, Director of Content at Verizon Media, announced a string of new editorial initiatives to be launched in 2021 across the Yahoo suite of brands. The move comes as part of the masthead’s commitment to providing up-to-the-minute, independent news. 

Yahoo Sport will launch a new video series called ‘Mind Games’, featuring elite athletes sharing the mental toll of being an elite athlete. The animated series will tell the stories of athletes including Australian rugby player and Olympic Gold medalist Ellia Green, world champion boxer Billy Dib and Australian Olympic swimmer Daniel Kowalski,  on how they dealt with their own mental battles. 

Yahoo Lifestyle is launching a new ‘D&M’ editorial series which will promote stories across verticals including race and diversity, disability, women’s health, sustainability, sex and gender, and mental health. 

Verizon Media’s Director of Content Simon Wheeler said: “Unlike many publishers Verizon Media is proudly independent which means we can give users the plain facts. We tell them stories they want to know, not what we think they should know. In 2021 we’re doubling down on our commitment to original content, telling lesser-known but important Australian stories and serving a diverse range of communities.”

RYOT Studio creates the next generation 5G ready extended reality offerings

Verizon Media’s branded content team RYOT Studio showcased some of its pioneering work across augmented reality platforms for both Verizon Media’s editorial brands and advertisers. 

Recent work from RYOT includes a virtual Santa created on Verizon Media’s WebAR platform for Officeworks, which allows users to create a COVID-safe Christmas photo.  And in the lead up to NAIDOC Week, RYOT Studio partnered with artist Delvene Cockatoo-Collins to create a WebAR experience that celebrates the sacred story of Migaloo the albino whale. Users were able to explore a map of the whale’s migration patterns, view a scaled size comparison, and interact with a stunning art display all within an editorial feature. 

Julia Edwards, Head of Strategic Solutions RYOT Studio, commented: “The launch of our Verizon Media Immersive Platform is what allowed us to take advantage of the rapid advancements we’ve seen in WebAR in the past 12 months, meaning that we’re able to create AR experiences that are easily scalable, accessible and extremely user friendly. 

“Immersive formats turn passive audiences into active participants, which generates higher engagement and with the roll out of 5G across Australia,  this will only enable these extended reality experiences to be even more captivating.”

Doubling down on CSR and committing to ‘Advertising for Good’

In the past 12 months Verizon Media donated over $1million worth of volunteering hours, free advertising inventory, money and resources to a number of charities including Musicians Making a Difference (MMAD), UnLtd, Red Cross Australia, Inco, Generation, Take 3 for the Sea, and Ronald McDonald House. 

Verizon Media’s charity partner Musicians Making A Difference (MMAD), an organisation that provides mentoring and creative support to disadvantaged youth through music and dance, shared that Verizon Media recently raised over $60,000 to ‘Adopt a Block’ which covered the cost of an entire outreach program to support 100 vulnerable people in the local community. 

Dominic Brook, Founder of MMAD, commented: “We’ve worked with Verizon Media for over three years and over that time, Verizon Media has become a part of our family and we’ve also become a part of theirs. Verizon Media has unlocked their skills, resources and funds for good and have been an incredibly powerful partner to MMAD, directly helping so many kids lives.”