Life at Yahoo!
By Thomas Bink
By Thomas Bink
Yahoo! Canada was with her every for every step of the journey.
How It All Began
It all started with a tip from a Yahoo! freelance video producer who knew about Ross’s planned expedition, which was being set up by the Test Your Limits organization. The group wanted to raise awareness for heart failure research in return for exclusive content about their trek to the bottom of the planet.
After meeting Ross and reading some of her previous blog posts, I knew this could be a unique series where the content was the real attraction. We felt people would be drawn in by the drama of the expedition and develop an affinity for Yahoo! as well as the cause.
Making It Happen
The solution was simple – the Yahoo! Canada team would put together a page to host Ross’s daily posts and photographs and provide a link for interested users to get more information on the cause. Ross, the only woman on the expedition, would send her posts and photos through a time-restricted satellite phone to a shared dropbox every day, regardless of the conditions.
Prior to her departure on January 1, Ross, who is also one of Canada’s top cardiologists, did a number of candid video interviews at the Yahoo! Canada offices about the dangers of her trek, her medical preparations and what she would miss most during the journey. And after Ross arrived in Antarctica, we set up a way for visitors to the site to ask her questions about the voyage, which she would answer in her blog posts.
Getting the interaction between Ross and our visitors was really critical, so we set up a Yahoo! e-mail address – AskDrRoss@yahoo.ca. It was great that our users in Saskatchewan or Alberta could engage someone who was struggling against snowstorms and frigid temperatures at the bottom of the Earth thousands of miles away using our products.
Hundreds of questions were submitted and by the time Ross reached the Pole, our site had garnered hundreds of thousands of page views. The traffic was nice, but the real goal was to raise the profile of our brand in Canada and to show off some of the great things we’re doing at Yahoo! now and going forward (in addition to helping a great cause!). We really have an opportunity at Yahoo! to do things differently than traditional media in Canada.
And it was totally worth it just to see Yahoo! at the South Pole! Read all about it here: http://ca.news.yahoo.com/south-pole/.