Content analysis: Editors work hard to entice Mexican readers

Mexican readers living in Mexico and in the Southwestern U.S. want news about what is happening on the other side of the border. To this end, The Arizona Daily Star (Pullitzer) and the San Diego Union Tribune (Copley Press) recently entered an on-line content sharing agreement with Mexico's El Imparcial (Sonora, Editores del Noroeste). “Traffic to our website has increased as a result of these agreements,” Manuel Beltrán, who is in charge of content at ElImparcial.com, tells Portadatm. El Imparcial, the second most read newspaper in Mexico, is published just 45 miles from the US-Mexican border. The papers exchange the top three front page stories and the top three local stories from each paper.

The stories are not translated. El Imparcial content appearing on The Arizona Daily Star's homepage is in Spanish. Content from the Arizona Daily Star, published daily on El Imparcial's homepage, appears in English. The San Diego Union Tribune publishes Spanish-language content from El Imparcial in a section of its website which covers the Tijuana border area. El Imparcial and the Arizona Daily Star are also working on a project involving more cooperation between their editorial teams.

Do the content acquisition strategies of newspapers catering to US Hispanics reflect the need for Mexican content? Generally, they do. Orange>County's Excelsior (Freedom Communications) uses Agencia Reforma's line service to get its Mexican and Latin American content. Staff journalists and the City News Service wire provide local content. Additionally, Excelsior subscribes to AP and is currently talking with the Spanish news agency Efe.

Mexican wire services are an obvious choice for publishers interested in Mexican content. The governmental agency Notimex sends 500 daily news items (photos and information) to Hispanic publications in the U.S. Interestingly, Notimex's website receives 35% of its visits from the U.S. “Generally, our clients tell us that they need more info about health and automotive news,” Cynthia Aguilar Chacón, account executive at Notimex tells Portadatm.

Servicio Universal de Noticias, another Mexican wire service published by the Mexican newspaper El Universal, syndicates columns, interviews, feature articles and “hard news” written by Mexican journalists.

Efe, the largest Spanish-language news agency in the world, also provides substantial coverage on Mexico and Latin America. Emilio Sánchez, director of Efe in the Americas, noted that for clients in the US Hispanic market, Efe focuses on content about Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. Finally, Newscom an a la carte content source owned by Tribune and Knight Ridder, recently launched a Spanish-language service.


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