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Back to the Future for Marissa Mayer? Here's Yahoo's Original Media Programming Pitch From 2012.

We've seen this story before at the Silicon Valley Internet giant. Literally.

Recently, there have been reports here and elsewhere that Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer is doubling down in the premium media space, most especially in video.

That includes an effort to create a kind of YouTube competitor, as well as pushing to distribute original programming as Netflix does.

Oh, a dramatic plot twist!

Not so much. As they say in Hollywood, we’ve seen this story before at the Silicon Valley Internet giant. Most importantly, marketers have seen it.

Case in point: Here’s the pitch that Yahoo execs then leading the company made at “creative communications” confab Cannes Lions in June of 2012 to the world’s biggest advertisers.

Among the highlights of deck and the message, according to advertisers who saw it, and which you can read below:

Yahoo was dedicated to informing and entertaining users; offered personalized, compelling experiences across all screens via premium video; had broadcast-level reach and frequency; would focus on big events; would provide original coverage and voices; and was dedicated to blockbuster video, such as “Electric City” from Hollywood’s Tom Hanks, a 90-minute show that cost over $1 million to produce, and “Cybergeddon” from “CSI” creator Anthony Zuiker.

In addition, then-interim CEO Ross Levinsohn did a sit-down with Marc Pritchard, CMO of P&G; and Maurice Levy, CEO of Publicis, on the subject, which you can see here.

Sound very familiar? Well, it is — and Yahoo’s tried this tack this several times before, including an attempt long ago to buy YouTube itself. That acquisition failed and Google famously scooped up the online video giant.

But none of the expanded media — Yahoo does continue to have strong news, sports and finance sites — hopes back then or in 2012 worked out so well, especially after Mayer was hired just a month later to run Yahoo. Although times have most certainly changed with each passing year, it will be interesting to see what she can do this time to make the difference.

In any case, it makes for interesting reading now, especially as Yahoo seeks a new chief revenue officer to sell a new content effort. (I had to take screenshots of each page, 35 in all, in order to make sure the PDF I received was not traceable, so click on images to make larger):

This article originally appeared on

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