Dismal Yahoo News Of The Day and The Power Of A Name

The Layoffs have Started.  Meanwhile, Yahoo is countersuing.

Honestly, I can’t see any reason for Yahoo to continue as anything else.  Their refocusing doesn’t make a lot of sense to me, I don’t see a plan, and I can imagine they’ve annoyed the bejezus out of people with the lawsuit.  What’s left?

However I’d add this – even if Yahoo does have a plan, a winning strategy, something that will work, there’s one barrier that really is holding them back.

The name.

Yahoo used to be cool.  It used to be a big thing.  Then they slipped, and everyone else came in and, well . . . you know the rest.  Yahoo is now laying people off and suing other successful companies, and people are just feeling sort of angry/sorry for them.

The name Yahoo now means “failure” (and a rather drawn-out, lashing-out failure at that).  There’s little chance Yahoo can get over that.

So, oddly, I think Yahoo’s best chance, whatever their other plan, is to acquire/partner up with some others and form a newly-named business to get the hell away from their name.  That may be enough psychological boost – and a good branding exercise – to help good plans be realized.

That requires good plans, but even they will have to overcome the name problem . . .

Steven Savage

(Oh, and I maintain my “only apply with the utmost caution to Yahoo” stance.)