Yahoo! & Me

I’ve been thinking about long-term relationships with brands and how they’ve changed over the years as a result of online communications and, specifically, how that has allowed some brands to become integrated into much of our existence.

My relationship with a brand of football cleats is developed when I shop for them and it is reinforced every time I put them on to play football. But I don’t wear them every day; and even if I did, when I’m wearing them, I’m not exposed to the brand.

Yahoo! - Default Home Page For Netscape Browser Circa 1995

Online brands are different that way, especially those brands that provide some type of utility.

Yahoo! has woven itself into practically my everyday experience from the start.

I first went online in 1993 through various online services like CompuServ and AOL but by 1994 I was ready to ditch the training wheels after I kept reading about this remarkable new thing called the World Wide Web. My first ISP was through the Pioneer Press‘ partnership with InfiNet and it was through my open connection to the net that I was first introduced to Yahoo!

My installation disc included software for the Netscape browser whose default home page was the Yahoo! Directory.
So, Yahoo! was integrated into my online experience as I first really explored the Web. I remember the sense of wonder as I navigated Yahoo!’s categories of sites: newspapers from around the world! museums’ collections!, all at my fingertips.

One aspect of online marketing was search engine optimization before SEO was a defined concept. SEO at that time involved ensuring you included the right keywords on your Web site and within your keyword meta tags but, more importantly, it involved crafting keyword rich copy for your all-important Yahoo! directory listing.

In addition to the Yahoo! Directory subsequently, Yahoo! Search, throughout the years

So much so, that I created Flickr recipes:

When I stop to think about it, I’ve interacted with a Yahoo! brand probably nearly daily since 1995. That’s about 15 years of constant exposure and that’s pretty amazing.

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