Marchex uses Yahoo's new search tools

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Search and media company Marchex Inc. announced it is converting search ad listings from its pay-per-click engine Enhance Interactive into Yahoo Sponsored Search listings. It is a response to Yahoo's recent launch of the Search Marketing Commercial API Program, which provides businesses and developers with free, open access to the Panama search marketing application program interfaces.

Panama, launched in the fourth quarter of 2006, provides advertisers with geo-targeting. Marchex will use the geo-targeting capability to provide its Enhance Interactive advertisers with more targeted campaigns based on each advertiser's target markets.

The strategy is to "add more high-quality distribution to our network and expand its reach," said Scott Greenberg, Marchex senior vice president of advertiser services.

This relationship should also provide advertisers using Enhance Interactive with a new source of traffic.

"Advertisers are always looking for the most efficient and effective ways to get high-quality distribution," Mr. Greenberg said. "We believe that what we announced provides our many thousands of advertisers with valuable distribution opportunities."

In addition, the partnership provides Yahoo with another stream of relevant advertisers.

Advertisers, developers, ad agencies and technology providers can build on Yahoo's search marketing technologies to enhance their existing business offerings or create new search marketing tools and

applications.

"Our strategy here is to really commit to our partners," said Dan Boerg, managing director of sales technology at Yahoo, Sunnyvale, CA. "We want to give them open access to build on top of Panama.

"This program is designed to encourage innovation," he said. "We want our partners to go in, test it, play around with it and in the end we hope it will help them build better software applications."

The program provides access to Yahoo Search Marketing's APIs and offers businesses customizable, fee-based services.

The program provides three levels of commercial partnership.

The basic partnership is designed for small advertising agencies and early-stage technology companies. It provides free access to the Panama platform and technical support and leverages the Yahoo commercial brand to develop and launch applications.

The advanced program is designed for fast-growing technology companies and mid-size advertising agencies. It provides access to the Panama platform, technical account-management support, service-level commitments and listing in partner application directory.

The elite program is for leading technology companies and large advertising agencies. It leverages the Panama platform, resources and brand through regular business review, product council, roadmap coordination and joint marketing activities.

Early participants in the elite tier include Efficient Frontier, Omniture, SearchIgnite and The Search Agency.

"The first challenge this will address is getting access without paying," Mr. Boerg said. "Second is it will give the support businesses and developers need."

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