Amazon Makes Play for Latinos Through Soccer

What: Amazon has signed on to its largest ad buy on Univision Deportes, as presenting sponsor of "The Championship Week" soccer events this month.
Why it matters: As the brand continues to exert its marketing force more and more into sport, the Latino audience will become that much more valuable.

There is no secret that engaging the Latino community is going to be key for brand success more in the future than ever before. Tech and digital savvy millennials, as well as families looking to grow consumption, have to be key targets, whether they speak English or Spanish first. Also, if you are looking for an active audience with an affinity for sports, live sports even more so, then look to soccer, baseball and basketball as sports of choice.

Just ask Amazon (@amazon).

As the brand continues to exert its marketing force more and more into sport, the Latino audience will become that much more valuable, and published reports this week show that strategy around sports coming full circle this month.

Amazon’s investment could signal a key shift in spending both for sport and the Latino audience.

According to Terry Lefton of SportsBusiness Journal (@sbjsbd), Amazon's push to break through the clutter and engage with Latinos during the critical holiday retail season will be through soccer, as they have signed on as presenting sponsor of “The Championships Week” across Univision Deportes (@UnivisionSports), a two-week festival of playoff soccer combining Univision’s premier fútbol properties.

It represents Amazon’s largest ad buy on Univision Deportes.

“We’re happy to find an advertiser as important as Amazon finding value in being across all of these top-level soccer games at a very busy time of year,” said Rick Resnick, Univision senior vice president, sales marketing strategy and solutions told Lefton.

“Semana de Campeonatos presentado por Amazon,” running during the first half of December, will include the MLS Cup (@MLSchampionship game next Sunday between Atlanta United (@ATLUTDand the Portland Timbers (@TimbersFC), along with the “two-legged” finals of Liga MX (@LigaMxEngand playoff competition from the UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague). Also in the package are spots during the games, a variety of shoulder programming and studio highlights shows, ranging from “Deportiva,” “Linea de Cuatro,” “Contacto Deportivo,” and “Mision Europa,” which airs from 5-6 p.m. Monday through Friday on the UniMas simulcast on UDN.

Join us at PORTADA LOS ANGELES on March 15, 2019 at the Loews Beach Hotel Santa Monica, where we will dive deep into sports and soccer marketing's preeminent topics. Felix Palau, VP Marketing, Heineken will discuss "How to measure ROI and transfer best practices between sports marketing platforms". Other speaking engagements include Tiago Pinto, Global Marketing Director, Gatorade who will provide answers to the question: "Will Corporate America jump on the soccer opportunity?"Attendees will also be able to benefit from Portada's meet-up service of three-eight-minute meetings with top brand executives!

“When you look at this package it is a great buy across a wide demo of soccer fans, from those with a passion for MLS to those who look more regionally and globally,” said Chris Lencheski, veteran sports marketer and professor at Columbia University. “While we don’t see Amazon yet buying streaming rights for these properties, they know the growing brand power that fútbol has and they are going right to a targeted and passionate sweet spot. If it’s successful, and there is no reason it won’t be, it could be a turning point for brands who still struggle to engage the Latino fan, be it in English or Spanish.”

While consumer brands like a Modelo (@ModeloUSAor Budweiser (@Budweiseror Goya (@GoyaFoodshave found fútbol a key engagement spot, tech and media brands have yet to make a wide push, preferring conservative spends. Amazon’s investment could signal a key shift in spending both for sport and the Latino audience, one which has been a long time in coming away from mega events like World Cup.

If it’s a win, it’s a trend to watch for 2019 and beyond, and might be the long rumored shift for brands to get more engaged with the demo, one which is clamoring for wide engagement.

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Cover Image: Flickr/Craig Dietrich

Joe Favorito @joefav

Joe Favorito has over 32 years of strategic communications/marketing, business development and public relations expertise in sports, entertainment, brand building, media training, television, athletic administration and business. The Brooklyn, New York native has managed the day-to- day activities in strategic communications for: Two of the world’s hallmark sports and entertainment brands (the New York Knickerbockers and Philadelphia 76ers), the world’s largest professional sport for women (the WTA Tour), the world’s largest sports National Governing Body (the United States Tennis Association) and the world’s largest annual sporting event (the US Open). He also oversaw the strategic planning, investor relations, communications and digital business development of the International Fight League during its two year run as a Mixed Martial Arts venture and a publicly traded company. Favorito serves on the boards of the Weinstein Carnegie Group, New York Sports Venture Capital, the National Sports Marketing Network, the Drexel University Sports Business program, and Columbia University’s Sports Management program (where he is an instructor in Strategic Communications and Director of Industry Relations). Joe also maintains a well trafficked blog on the sports marketing and publicity field, “Sports Marketing and PR Roundup,” on the website joefavorito.com, as well authoring the first- ever text on the sports publicity industry (“Sports Publicity” published in August 2007 by Reed Elsevier and updated in 2012 by Taylor Publishing with a third printing coming in 2018), which is used in over 60 sports management programs in the U.S. He has been a guest speaker on sports marketing, social media and communications at a host of institutions, including Princeton University, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Georgetown University, the University of Florida Law School, New York University, the Stanford University Graduate School of Business and many others. He is also a frequent spokesperson on the industry for publications ranging from Ad Age and The New York Times to NPR and CBS News. A graduate of Fordham University, Joe, his wife and two children reside in River Vale, New Jersey.

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