Yahoo may let Facebook sell ads on Tumblr to get the business back on track


David Karp

Michael Seto/Business Insider

Tumblr founder David Karp

Tumblr, the Yahoo-owned blogging platform, has fallen short of its revenue targets.

The website is only able to sell ads on 10% to 15% of its available inventory of web pages, according to a new report in The Information, which cites anonymous sources.

The solution: a partnership with Facebook.


According to the report, Yahoo and Facebook are in discussions about a deal that would allow Facebook to sells ads on Tumblr web pages. The Facebook-brokered ads would arrive on Tumblr via the Facebook Audience Network, the service where Facebook helps marketers place their ads beyond Facebook's own social network.

The move is the latest sign of Tumblr's efforts to boost its advertising revenue. Tumblr recently restructured its sales group, following a botched sales integration effort with parent company Yahoo.

And Tumblr removed a big barrier to brands buying ads on its site by eliminating the requirement that advertisers must maintain their own Tumblr blogs.


Whether all this is enough to revitalize the Tumblr ad business remains to be seen. But Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer need to show improvements soon, given that activist investors are breathing down her neck and demanding a sale of the company.

Yahoo and Facebook were not immediately available for comment.

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