Erin McPherson Dishes on Future of Yahoo! Video

/ Jun 21, 2013


At Cannes Lions 2013 today Erin McPherson, Yahoo! vice president and head of video, expressed excitement the company’s new direction: “We’ve been almost a year with Marissa Mayer at the helm of the company and the energy is palpable. We’re moving at such a rapid pace. We’re innovating. We’ve launched more products in the last six months than we have in the previous six years.”

Fall also holds the release of Broadway Video’s “Saturday Night Live” exclusively on Yahoo! and the site will also coordinate by releasing “eight original shows, launched all at the same time –so that’s more than a hundred episodes at once, to really enable our audience to binge if they want to, which is what our data is showing us,” a similar data-based chorus heard from Netflix in the wake of “Hemlock Grove”‘s renewal.

But she sees bringing the “SNL” archives to Yahoo! in fall as part of a bigger trend for both Yahoo! and the video industry itself, saying “I see convergence continuing to happen, meaning consumers will watch web content seamlessly with television content online. The web stars of today are the quote media stars of tomorrow.” And what that trend means for Yahoo! “is scaling. I’d say the one big word is we’re scaling on what we’ve been building.”

Beyond more original, archival “SNL,” and user content, “it’s really about scaling out what we’ve already built on and thus allowing each and every user to get a personalized video experience, which will require a lot of different kinds of content because, you know, what I love isn’t necessarily what you love and so on and so forth. Web original content’s still an important part of that because it’s what’s going to make us unique, what’s going to put a unique Yahoo! voice around all this content. But personalization will also make us unique.”

So it seems Yahoo!’s already taken steps one and five of Brian Norgard’s six-step plan for Yahoo!’s complete domination of episodic online content, but as they gear up for fall, perhaps they’ll expand into the remaining four. McPherson’s complete interview is available here.

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