Author

Mark A. Browne

Browsing

What:  Portada talked with Stanley Black & Decker’s VP Digital and Commercial Excellence  Andres Amezquita about how SB&D is using Latin America as a major market to test digital and content innovations.
Why it matters: Content commerce and SB&D’s new “omnichannel” approach to marketing in Latin America will be a featured topic at Portada Miami on April 12  Make sure to get your tickets! While offline continues to be important, Amezquita says offline plus online has “a stronger appeal.”

Andres Amezquita is proactively changing SB&D’s marketing approach in Latin America.

The global diversified industrial company that provides tools and solutions to builders and makers worldwide, is keenly away of the power of reaching consumers digitally. But that doesn’t mean abandoning the traditional offline channels of communications that have served the company so well since its founding in 1843.

While the traditional focus has been on offline communications with consumers (in-store materials, catalogues, print), SB&D is proactively changing its marketing approach in Latin America, Amezquita tells Portada.

“While we realize offline continues to be important we believe an omnichannel (offline plus online) approach has a stronger appeal.”

Content and focus on the end-user is driving SB&D’s new LATAM strategy of a combined offline and online approach.

“Our strategy is to be end-user centric. Content is a key pillar of this,” Amezquita says.

SB&D’s shift from traditional commercialization strategies to an end-user centered e-commerce approach to marketing also takes into account the exploding growth of consumers’ access to the internet via cell phones in Latin America.

“YouTube and social media, in particular Facebook, are key for our communication strategy,” Amezquita says.

Stanley Black & Decker’s Andres Amezquita will be a featured speaker at #Portadamia on April 12 when he will discuss how SB&D’s content- and user-focused digital strategy in Latin America is changing the way SB&D is reaching customers.

Portada: What are some of the ways digital tools can improve your content reach to consumers?

AA: We have to have all the fundamentals in the right place (websites, social destinations) while bringing technology to key activities like our after-sales service network.

While we realize offline continues to be important we believe an omnichannel (offline plus online) approach has a stronger appeal.

Portada: What are some of the new tools SB&D is deploying in Latin America that reflect an increased focus on the end-user, and how does ecommerce fit into this?

AA: We also realize the importance of digital tutorials and video content to upskill and help our users do more with their tools.

Portada: Why the importance of eCommerce?

AA: eCommerce is part of the ecosystem where our end user moves gathering information to make decisions and choosing the best way to buy our products.

Portada: What changes have there been in online sales for SB&D in Latin America?

AA: We have accelerated growth in this area putting a lot of focus on it. We are not only looking at pure players but actively working to develop our customers within marketplaces.

Portada: Is SB&D using machine learning as part of its overall consumer-centric, content focused online and offline strategy?

AA: Definitely.

Portada: Why and how is Miami important for Stanley Black & Decker Latin America?

AA: Close to Miami we have our Global Emerging Markets headquarters. In this division we work every day to create an exponential organization and experiment new models to grow our business. Miami is in a privileged place geographically for being close to Latin America and yet at a distance to get a bigger picture. Also it provides a daily platform to explore upcoming digital trends before they are hot within Latam.

What: Portada talked with Acuity Ads Chief Strategy Officer Seraj Bharwani about how machine learning is expanding brands’ reach to specific cultural audiences.
Why it matters: Machine learning is paving the way to a new, more effective approach for reaching specific cultural audiences and will be a featured topic at Portada Los Angeles on March 15. But digital platforms, like Google and YouTube need to do more to protect brands from inappropriate content, Bharwani says.

Seraj Bharwani has his eye on decision sciences, specifically: machine learning and computer algorithms which he says give brands powerful new tools for penetrating deeper into multi-cultural market segments than ever before.

It used to be that speaking the language of a specific ethnic market segment was all advertisers could do to put their messages before those audiences. But new technology has changed the rules of the game, Bharwani tells Portada.

“Computer algorithms that can process vast amounts of user data to assess user preferences and propensities by aggregating their social, search, shopping and viewing behavior in real-time are now being used to create what we call live personas of in-culture audience.”

Portada: Why are traditional in-language targeting tools insufficient to reach cultural audiences today?

Seraj Bharwani: There appears general consensus among sociologists, anthropologists, agency planners, and the like that defining the US Hispanic population by language is simply too limiting. This audience lives a rich life defined by their unique core family values, cuisine, music, festivals, celebrations and other characteristics more indicative of their preferences.

Another unique aspect of this audience is their rapid, scaled adoption and prolific use of digital and social media. These online behavior signals in aggregate provide robust cultural cues that allow us to reach the other two-thirds (40 million) of the US Hispanic population that is bi-cultural and bilingual with more relevant advertising.

Acuity Ads Chief Strategy Officer Seraj Bharwani will be a featured speaker atPortada Los Angeles on March 15 when he will provide insights in how machine learning tools are expanding brand marketers’ ability to reach multi-cultural audiences.

Portada: What role do decisioning technologies, i.e. Machine learning or Artificial Intelligence play in updated efforts to target specific cultural market segments in the US?

S.B.: Computer algorithms these days can process vast amounts of user data to assess user preferences by aggregating their social, search, shopping and viewing behavior in real-time, and are now being used to create what we call live-personas of in-culture audience.

By incorporating what keywords people type, who they follow, which videos and content they watch, which mobile apps they download and check into, etc., the “learning” algorithms can predict (in real-time) if a given PERSONA is sensitive to the cultural context and will respond to specific ads, products, or brands with a culturally relevant message.

Computer algorithms that can process vast amounts of user data to assess user preferences and propensities by aggregating their social, search, shopping and viewing behavior in real-time are now being used to create what we call live personas of in-culture audience.

Portada: Have the sources of consumer data changed as marketers have begun to use machine learning tools to reach specific cultural targets?

S.B.: Publishers like Facebook, Google and Amazon possess substantial consumer data individually within their respective lanes – social, search or shopping data respectively that could provide selected “In-culture” cues. What advertisers need are in-culture personas aggregated from a full spectrum of consumer behaviors across social, search, viewing, and shopping behaviors. 

Portada: Several major brands recently pulled their advertising from YouTube after it was revealed that viewers were exchanging child pornography links in the video comment sections. How can marketers better protect their brands?

 S.B.: This is not the first time we have heard of the brand safety scandal on YouTube. Advertisers need to be clear about why they are buying advertising on YouTube/Google. If an advertiser wants great audience REACH, then the environment within which the ads run may not always be brand appropriate or brand safe. As sophisticated as Google happens to be with its pattern recognition algorithms, it is unrealistic to expect the platform to police every video and comment posted on the platform. And Google isn’t about to shut down the commenting altogether like the PBS News Hour as it would severely curtail the engagement potential of the YouTube platform.

 If on the other hand advertisers want fully brand-safe and brand-appropriate environment for their ads, their best bet would be to buy access to the YouTube audience through premium publishers like Disney, Vevo, Buzzfeed, and others who have captive channels on YouTube to ensure control over the quality of the media environment. There is a good chance that advertisers would sacrifice media efficiency (premium environments command higher prices) and REACH.

A bi-weekly summary of the most exciting recent news in marketing technology and trends. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

  • Spotify is going gangbusters on podcasting. The streaming platform developed by Swedish company Spotify AB has announced plans to purchase the narrative podcasting company Gimlet Media for US $230 million as well as Anchor, a platform for creating and distributing podcasts. Spotify’s expansion is fueled by a purchasing budget up to US $500 million year, according to reporting by Yahoo Finance.

 

  • The South American dairy company Conaprole has announced it’s the first business in Uruguay to launch a marketing campaign on Snapchat. A campaign to promote Yoprole yogurt product Banatilla on Snapchat targeted youths between the ages of 13 and 20. Snapchat offers the dairy products company the opportunity to build brand recognition among younger consumers, according to Alejandra Miranda, director of the Snapchat initiative.

 

  • Advertising technology giant Taptica has announced its intention to create a new, more powerful and independent video advertising company with the acquisition of RhythmOne. The programmatic video capabilities of RhythmOne, plus its expertise in connected-TV devices will be combined with Taptica’s subsidiary company Tremor Video DSP which specializes in TV retargeting.

 

  • San Francisco-based mobile and marketing analytics leader AppsFlyer predicts that investment in mobile apps will grow 65% worldwide by 2020. Their growth forecast foresees a 34% annual increase in spending on mobile apps each year.

 

  • A survey of 501 marketing and branding decision-makers by Bynder reveals marketers struggle most with deciding which technologies to invest in. Marketers also reported relying more on social media while they said they struggle with the threat of algorithm changes to online brand engagement.

 

  • Who’s more likely to click on your paid internet ads? A lot depends on your ad viewers’ ages and the search engine they use, according to an analysis by Clutch. Baby boomers (38%) were found to be the most prone to click on branded paid search ads, while Google users (36%) were more likely to click on paid search ads related to their searches. Viewers of ads on YouTube and Amazon (33%) were more likely to click if the ad featured a familiar brand.

 

  • Marketers are in love with influencer marketing, according to survey results performed by SocialPubli.com and published in the 2019 Influencer Marketing Report. More than 90 percent of marketers surveyed said they were using influencers to promote their brands, and 60 percent said they expect to increase spending on influencers this year.

What: We looked at the top 15 online retail sites visited by shoppers in the U.S. in December of 2018 and how they scored in numbers of visitors.
Why it matters: In spite of disappointing comparable store sales in December, the Macy’s website racked up a strong finish to the year, moving up two places in overall share of total visits to the top 15 sites ranked by comScore. Walgreens managed to make it into the top 15 rankings.

Number of visitors to the Top 15 e-commerce sites in the U.S., December 2018
Total Audience, Home and Work, PC/Laptop1,071,628
SiteTotal Unique Visitors*
Amazon Sites206,103
Wal-Mart131,911
eBay109,423
Target Corporation79,098
Apple.com Worldwide Sites72,845
Kohl’s Corporation59,074
ETSY.COM55,970
Best Buy Sites55,000
Samsung Group51,953
Macy’s Inc.46,123
WISH.COM45,056
The Home Depot, Inc.45,056
Ticketmaster43,605
Wayfair38,194
Walgreen Co.32,217

Source: comScore
*Numbers reported as shown

Macy’s comparable store sales disappointed in December of 2018, but online, the retailer moved up three rankings among the top 15 most-visited sites in the U.S. compared to the prior month. Analysts reported last month that Macy’s missed its predicted sales, clocking in a 1.1% comp sales increase for the nine-week holiday period, almost a full percentage point below expectations.

Online, however, the retailer saw nearly a half percentage point in increased visits over November, moving to 10th place among the top 15 sites analyzed in overall visits compared to 13th place in November. Kohl’s also saw a comparable store sales increase of 1.2% in the November-December period, but Kohl’s managed to maintain its 5th place in the comScore rankings.

Etsy, the e-commerce website dedicated to handmade or vintage items, surged in the rankings from 9th place in November to 7th place in December.

  • Amazon held fast to its first-place ranking in the top 15 sites, with 19.2 percent of all site visits, an increase over the 18.8 percent in November.
  • Amazon saw an increase in visitors to its site of just over 4,000 in December.
  • Target managed to edge out Apple for fourth place in the rankings. Apple’s overall share of site visits dropped from 7.6 percent in November to 6.8 percent in December.
  • The Home Depot also suffered a decrease in positioning, dropping to 12th place in December from 10th place in November.
  • Lowe’s Home Improvement dropped out of the top 15 most visited sites in the US in December, and Walgreen’s made it into the top 15, taking 15th
  • Etsy moved up to seventh place in the rankings in December from ninth place in November, increasing its percentage share of all visits to the top 15 sites from 4.6 percent in November to 5.2 percent in December.
  • eBay maintained second place in the rankings and won a slight increase in visitors over the month of November.

What: Portada talked with Kevin Thompson, Chief Marketing Officer Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC about the global firm’s recent triumphs in digital marketing.
Why it matters: The “digital first” approach to marketing by the Sotheby’s International Realty brand is winning the firm kudos for its groundbreaking use of video, virtual and augmented reality and will be featured at Portada’s Data & Content Marketing Forum April 3.

Kevin Thompson is on a roll, and Sotheby’s International Realty is reaping the benefits of his “digital first” approach to the venerable firm’s marketing, raising the bar in the industry and connecting with consumers in new and highly personalized ways.

Last year, Sotheby’s International Realty achieved the Silver Creator Award for its YouTube channel that has more than 179,000 subscribers. The channel is the most subscribed YouTube channel in the real estate industry, but Thompson’s digital-first vision hasn’t stopped there. Under his leadership, Sotheby’s International Realty has launched new and powerful ways for connecting with consumers, leveraging AR and VR technology to make home purchasing more personalized than ever before.

Portada: What do you mean by a “digital first” approach to marketing and how has it evolved at Sotheby’s International Realty under your leadership?

Thompson: Prior marketing campaigns at Sotheby’s International Realty had been print first. Our affiliates designed mostly for print. But today, in the modern marketing landscape, if you’re not creating video, if you are not creating digital assets, you are really not marketing anymore. We have a digital approach first now, so when we are creating a new advertising campaign, the first assets we create are digital. One example is a digital search banner we use that is geographically targeted with drop-down menus. Those run on our partner websites, such as Architectural Digest, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, etc. We also have templates for social media for our entire network and we use a cloud-based ad building tool called Design Vault. We have created 1,500 templates which we’ve uploaded to Design Vault where agencies and affiliates can customize them.

Sotheby’s International Realty’s Kevin Thompson will be a featured speaker at #PortadaNYData on April 3 when he will provide insights into how brand marketers are unlocking new data and content opportunities.

The big crowning achievement for us in terms of digital assets for our agents was the launch of Curate. We were tapped by Google to build an AR virtual staging app that would be part of the relaunch of Google’s AR core. So, we worked with a phenomenal partner to create an AR virtual staging application for agents. The application allows any users, and not just agents, to scan a home’s interior and then place items, like furniture and décor accessories, into the scan and them see how they appear in the home in 3D reality. Curate can be downloaded at the Google Play and Apple app stores. Tens of thousands of people have downloaded and are using the Curate virtual staging app on their own which is amazing for us to have that level of brand interaction with consumers. It’s a phenomenal experience that we find deeply engaging for agents and consumers and allows us to engage consumers in a lifestyle conversation that other real estate brands can’t really do. Sotheby’s International Realty is the first real estate brand to launch an augmented reality application for a brand of our caliber. With virtual and augmented reality, we can create this 360-degree experience for consumers where they get a sense of what it’s going to feel like to live in the space.

With virtual and augmented reality, we can create this 360-degree experience for consumers where they get a sense of what it’s going to feel like to live in the space.

Portada: How have the cutting-edge virtual augmented reality tools being used by Sotheby’s International Realty actually increased your connection with both clients and potential clients?

Thompson: We have over 30,000 downloads of Curate so far, and we have agent testimonials saying they were able to secure the listing by using the application. Curate is available for the public to use as its wants. If someone wants to use the best virtual staging app out there, they can download Curate. We are interested in creating a brand connection with consumers even before they are thinking about selling a home.

We are interested in creating a brand connection with consumers even before they are thinking about selling a home.

Portada: How is Sotheby’s International Realty leveraging AR and VR to get better data on consumers?

Thompson: We’ve established partnerships with home furnishing and décor brands whose merchandise can be used with the Curate to place in the home for consumers to see what the home would look like with their lifestyle, design and accessory choices. We can then tell how many times specific room sets get used, the most popular furnishing brands with users, and the application is even shoppable. Users can click through on Curate to actually make purchases of the furniture or décor items they staged their rooms with.

Portada: Has Sotheby’s International Realty’s cutting-edge use of digital technology to connect with consumers actually improved sales?

Thompson: Yes. 1000%!

What: The market for online grocery sales and home delivery is in its infancy in Mexico but offers huge potential given the 65 million Mexicans who now have access to the internet.
Why it matters: Grocery and general merchandise retailer Walmart has 4.5 million e-commerce customers in Mexico, and its competitors, like E-commerce Director Rafael Castelltort at Soriana, tell Portada how they are racing to sell groceries online, building new digital infrastructure, deploying machine learning, creating alternatives to credit card payments and launching websites highly customized for e-commerce and home deliveries.

Mexico may offer the perfect storm for selling groceries online. A rapidly growing urban middle class, internet penetration that now reaches 65 million, and grocery retail chains building sophisticated online payment and delivery infrastructures combine to make a bright future with huge potential, according to analysts.

“Supermarket chains in Mexico can grow tremendously in the future,” concludes a new study by the American media measurement and analytics company comScore. “The sector has huge potential for growth.”

Walmart leads the online grocery market with 4.5 million ecommerce shoppers in Mexico. Grocery chain Soriana comes next at 1.1 million, followed by Superama with 992,000. But while most Mexicans shop online using their mobile phones, online grocery shoppers still tend to use PCs more than any other device.

Many retailers now offer their own mobile applications, but the majority of online grocery shoppers in Mexico use a cell phone and rely on the cell phone’s internet browser instead of the retailer’s mobile application.

“Consumption by applications is still very incipient,” the study notes. Walmart’s online shoppers use its application only 25% of the time, while Soriana shoppers use Soriana’s application 15% of the time, according to the study shared by comScore with Portada.

Surprisingly, when it comes to time spent shopping online for groceries, the PC is king, with the exception of Walmart and Chedraui. More ecommerce shoppers at Walmart and Chedraui use their mobile devices than the PC.


Source: comScore

In Search of Younger Online Grocery Shoppers

All of the grocery chains chasing the ecommerce market face the challenge of winning over younger shoppers.

Adults over the age of 35 are more likely to shop for food online than any other age group. La Comer, however, has the largest group of online shoppers ages 25 to 34, compared to all grocery retailers, the comScore study found.

Women make up the majority of online grocery shoppers at Soriana, La Comer and Superama, while men dominate at Walmart, Costco and Chedraui.

The majority of our clients are women who value their time and value home delivery.

“The majority of our clients are women who value their time and value home delivery,” Rafael Castelltort, Director of Electronic Commerce at Soriana, tells Portada.

E-commerce shoppers have the option to pick their orders up at the stores, but home delivery is more popular.

Excellence in service is a pillar of Soriana’s strategy for winning over e-commerce customers. “We focus on the customer, deliver what they request, and in the time promised,” says Castelltort.

Soriana does not offer lower prices online than in stores to win over new ecommerce customers. The average weekly order is between 50-60 items and customers can pay for the delivery using PayPal, by paying cash to the delivery person or swiping a credit card on a mobile terminal the delivery person brings with the order. Customers don’t have to pay online with a credit card to make a purchase.

Service, Service, Service

A totally seamless purchasing process, from order to payment and delivery is Walmart’s mantra for winning the battle of online sales.

“We understand that customers aren’t only looking to save money, but are also looking to save time,” Roberto Villalobos, Director of Web Operations at Walmart and Superama tells Portada.

“We are constantly improving the online shopping experience for our customers and have implemented significant changes for grocery shopping on our internet site, including our own mobile application.”

We understand that customers aren’t only looking to save money, but are also looking to save time.

Walmart’s mobile application received the Best App award at eShow Mexico last year, Villalobos notes.

Challenges Ahead

Online grocery revenue in the U.S. reached $17.5 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach $30 billion by 2021.

In Mexico, however, the comScore study found uneven growth over the past few years, and a slight downward trend for 2019. Long delivery times may explain both factors, the study said.

And while the online grocery sale market has “huge potential” in Mexico, the comScore study finds significant challenges remain on the horizon, including the need to incorporate machine learning, big data, and logistics which have proven key factors for success in other parts of the world.

“With sophisticated technology and offers oriented to the user, Mexican grocery chains can grow greatly in the future,” the comScore study concludes.

In Part Two of our series on e-commerce grocery sales in Mexico, we explore specific marketing innovation, payment, and technology strategies being used to win the battle to increase market share.

What: Miami-based agency Nobox has tapped Marcus Kawamura as Chief Creative Officer to drive brands’ engagement with consumers by generating big ideas and delivering them on multiple platforms.
Why it matters: Rapidly shifting technology requires brands to speak with consumers on multiple platforms, but Kawamura says engaging consumers requires deep brand understanding, big ideas, and the ability to entertain and react quickly to opportunities.

Nobox has been helping brands deliver their messaging to consumers since 2001. Founder Jayson Fittipaldi has stewarded the agency into the digital age, from email marketing to online video, social media and beyond. Now Nobox is ready to expand its “digital first” expertise with a focus on mid-sized companies in the US, helping CMO’s struggling to juggle content and creative with the demands of the myriad of technology platforms available for reaching consumers.

Portada caught up with Fittipaldi and newly appointed Chief Creative Officer Marcus Kawamura to discuss their insights into the maelstrom of digital opportunities for delivering brands’ connections with consumers and how the agency is positioning itself to add US clients to its impressive portfolio of international brands in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Portada: What’s Nobox’s unique perspective on the marketing landscape today?

Jayson Fittipaldi: It’s not all about interrupting what people are doing with your brand message. It’s about becoming what they are doing. The brand becomes the reason for the consumer to be online and entertained. The engagement value of what we do is always very high. The content we put out there is not going to take you away from your Instagram experience, it’s going to be part of the reason you are on Instagram. We shape ourselves to be that nimble. What Nobox is looking to do now is to link our digital and content expertise to ensure that the big ideas we develop for brands work across all platforms. Marcus is going to provide the big ideas that will serve as each brand’s foundation for its messaging across all platforms. With this new role, Marcus will take over creative leadership of the agency, something I have been responsible for since the agency’s inception in 2001.

Portada: Marcus, tell us about your background and your strategic goals for Nobox.

Marcus Kawamura: Originally from Sao Paulo, I’ve spent 20 years working at top creative agencies in Brazil such as AlmapBBDO, working on global accounts such as Volkswagen and Visa. I moved to the US in 2015 to work for Crispin Porter Bogusky (CPB) to work on the automobile brand Infiniti as its Global Creative Director and then in 2017 as Executive Creative Director at CPB Miami office to handle Letgo – the online second-hand marketplace app company, Aspen Dental, Embraer and Bauducco. My goal for Nobox is to use profound knowledge of our brands, from the inside out, to create big ideas for stunning work no matter what channel it’s delivered on. We are all content creators. It doesn’t matter what the channel. You have to reach the consumer as efficiently as you can.

The two-way interaction that brands have to engage in today has created a fluid and agile relationship between us as the agency and the brand, transforming the entire way we do creative.

Portada: What makes marketing different today, than say it was when we only had access to traditional media?

Marcus Kawamura: Brand messaging to consumers was traditionally one way. That’s totally changed. Today you have to engage and interact with consumers, and be ready to react to how they respond. You have to be tuned into not only how consumers receive brand messaging, but how they reply. It requires a dynamic approach and you have to be fast to react. It requires flexibility, agility and efficiency. The two-way interaction that brands have to engage in today has created a fluid and agile relationship between us as the agency and the brand, transforming the entire way we do creative. It has to be faster, more reliable and we need to apply an entrepreneurial quality to all of our work.

Portada: What’s Nobox got its sights on for 2019?

 Jayson Fittipaldi: We have a well-established portfolio of major brands, including Marriott, Gatorade, PlayStation, Sheraton, PepsiCo, Netflix and Memorial Health. We’re looking to focus on mid-sized brands in the US. CMOs at mid-sized brands are struggling to keep up, juggling the media buy with social content and how to work under one cohesive strategy. We work to understand the brand from the inside out so we can provide a strategic road map on what we think the big idea can be, and deliver the content on different platforms. We manage the complexity and make it easier for the client to navigate.

What: We looked at the top 15 online retail sites visited by Hispanic shoppers in the US in November of 2018 and how they scored in numbers of visitors.
Why it matters: Best Buy and Kohl’s benefited handsomely from increased visits by Hispanics to their websites in the lead up to the 2018 holiday shopping season. Both saw a nearly 40% increase in visitors in November compared to the previous month. While maintaining its first-place ranking in the top 15 most visited sites by Hispanics in the US in November, Amazon nonetheless saw a dip of 2% in its overall share of total visits compared to the month of October.

 

Number of Hispanic visitors to the Top 15 e-commerce sites in the US, November 2018
Total Audience, Home and Work, PC/Laptop154,176
SiteTotal Unique Visitors*
Amazon Sites28,333
Walmart18,602
eBay16,004
Apple.com Worldwide Sites11,959
Target Corporation10,433
Samsung Group9,701
WISH.COM8,611
Best Buy Sites8,485
Kohl’s Corporation7,541
The Home Depot, Inc.6,697
ETSY.com6,462
Ticketmaster6,342
Macy’s Inc.5,911
Wayfair4,913
Lowes.com4,182

Source: comScore *Numbers reported as shown

Kohl’s and Best Buy saw significant increases in the number of Hispanic visitors to their sites in the month of November, 2018 compared to October. Visits to both sites by Hispanics surged by nearly 40%, catapulting Kohl’s to 13th place among the top 15 ranked sites from 11th place in October. Best Buy jumped from 8th place in November from 11th place in October.

  • Walmart increased its share of Hispanic visitors to the top 15 sites ranked by comScore in November by 2,498 visits over the month of October.
  • Amazon saw a drop of 2% in its share of the total visits to the top 15 sites by Hispanics compared to October, but continued to hold first place among the sites monitored.
  • Amazon, Walmart, eBay, Apple, Target and Samsung maintained their top five rankings with Hispanics in that order in November compared to October.
  • Etsy dropped from 8th place in October to 11th place in November, or from a total of 7,012 visits to 6,462 with Hispanics.
  • Ticketmaster saw a dip in visits by Hispanics in November compared to October, slipping from 8th place in the rankings to 11th.
  • The Home Depot remained steady, garnering 4.3% of overall visits to the top 15 sites in November, the same percentage as in October.
  • eBay and Walmart saw decreases in their share of total visits to the top 15 sites by Hispanics by half a percentage point in November compared to October.

 

What: IZEA specializes in connecting brand marketers with influencer content creators and has signed a letter of intent (LOI) to acquire FLUVIP, which operates multiple influencer platforms in Latin America.
Why it matters: The rapid growth of cell phone use and digital marketing to sell products and services in Latin America makes FLUVIP’s network of 100,000 Hispanic influencers in both LATAM and the US look like the perfect scoop for IZEA to move into the region.

IZEA may have found the perfect match for extending its dominant technology connecting brands and influencers into the growing Hispanic market in the US and Latin America.

Who’s the lucky bride? FLUVIP.

It’s not a big surprise when you consider FLUVIP’s multiple influencer platforms in Colombia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru and Argentina plus FLUVIP’s network of more than 100,000 influencers. Not to mention its client base.

Plus, the rapid growth of cell phone use in the region has been catapulting digital ad spending by brands to new highs making FLUVIP an even more attractive prospect for IZEA.

“We believe that there is a significant opportunity for international consolidation in the Influencer Marketing space,” Alfonso Gómez Palacio, Telefonica’s Director Hispam North said in a statement announcing a Letter of Intent to acquire FLUVIP released on Wednesday.

“This transaction brings together the leading influencer marketing platform in the United States with the leading platform in Latin America.”

A match made for LATAM

Pedigree helps in any marriage and FLUVIP is brings a lot to the altar with investors which include the global Hispanic entertainment brand Cisneros Group, Spanish multinational telecommunications company Telefonica, and Velum Ventures specializing in seed and early stage investments in Latin America.

IZEA’s CEO Ted Murphy told the website Cheddar that IZEA sees tremendous promise in influencer marketing in LATAM where digital ad spending is expanding at twice the rate of the US.

This transaction brings together the leading influencer marketing platform in the United States with the leading platform in Latin America.

But successful influencer marketing requires a vision and perseverance, according to Vivian Baron, founder and creative chairwoman of Band of Insiders.

José Camargo is a member of Portada’s Brand Star Committee Latam

She recently told attendees at #PortadaMX in Mexico City only a “long-term strategy” can grow the “critical mass of loyal followers” brands need for influencer marketing to do its magic.

Synergy between influencers and a brand’s values is also an important tonic for success.

“You should focus on gaining trust and credibility through an influencer whose values coincide with the company’s,” José Camargo, e-commerce subdirector at Best Buy Mexico told #PortadaMX.

 

A perfect union of technology

IZEA intends to leverage its marriage with FLUVIP to combine the organizations’ technologies and provide better influencer marketing services to large international brands.

This technological union will accommodate multiple languages and currencies, software and managed services, and cultural expertise.

“We are excited by the potential to unite FLUVIP with IZEA to form a truly unique technology and services platform catering to marketers and influencers across North, Central, and South America,” Sebastian Jasminoy, Founder and CEO of FLUVIP, said in a release.

Multiple ways to tell brands’ stories

The marriage of IZEA and FLUVIP would appear to create a perfect match for brands looking for influencers to deliver their unique stories to consumers in LATAM.

FLUVIP operates platforms in LATAM that include Influtech, AdvocatesPro, and Mediadata where brands can harness the power of leading opinion makers in the region.

Plus, FLUVIP customers include Coca-Cola, Samsung, Apple, Pepsi, BBVA, Sony, Fox and National Geographic to name just a few.

But the game of influencing consumers isn’t just about influencers.

“Influencers are not only about your image; they can provide a great amount of information. By analyzing data and organic profiles, you can find more information than what a common marketing study can provide,” Band of Insiders Influence Marketing Manager Leonardo Vargas told #PortadaMX.

The precise terms of the FLUVIP acquisition haven’t been announced. The transaction may be consummated as soon as May of this year.

 

Our bi-weekly summary of the most exciting recent news in marketing technology and trends. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

Email is preferred by 85% of GenZ members for communicating with customer service reps, according to a study by SendGrid and as reported by MediaPost. A minority of those polled—just 41%–said they preferred live chat. A preference for social media came in at 36% while 48% of the Gen Zers said they plan to use email more over the next five years.

Advertising on TVs connected to the internet—known as Connected TV Devices—is better received by viewers than ads on regular non-connected TVs, according to a new study by Magna and IPG Media Lab. The study measured viewers’ unconscious responses to ads on both and found ads on connected TVs created higher retention rates. More positive emotions were also seen among viewers watching ads on connected TVs.

Media measurement and analytics company comScore and the global market research and a consulting firm Ipsos have announced the creation of a shared data platform for 27 cities in Mexico. The new platform will offer media companies and agencies a powerful new tool for measuring consumer’s consumption of both off-line and on-line communications.

The creative agency Social Snack has been named as “Lens Studio Partner” for Snapchat in all of Latin America by Internet Media Services (IMS) and Sony Pictures Television Networks. An announcement of Social Snack’s selection cited its expertise in creating augmented reality messaging on the Snapchat platform. “The certification is the result of the Partners Program launched by Snapchat that recognizes the leading companies in the industry that provide creative technology solutions to the advertisers of the platform,” the announcement noted.

Amazon Echo and Google Home smart speaker owners are hooked on the new technology, according to a study by Edison Research as reported by Search Engine Land.  According to Edison, 65% of the smart speaker owners say they can’t see themselves getting along without the new devices. The same report noted that voice commerce sales hit $1.8 billion in the US in 2018 and are predicted to grow to $40 billion by 2022.

Internet video company Accedo has announced an infusion of US $17 million in equity for the company’s future growth. “Accedo has built a leading position in a very dynamic and rapidly changing industry. The market trends are moving in the right directions and we expect to see continued rapid industry evolution over the coming years,” investor SEB Private Equity said in an announcement of the funding.

Salesforce is predicting a 50% increase in the use of data by media company marketing departments in 2019. The prediction is based on a survey of 4,100 marketing professionals across the globe, according to reporting by Media Post.

What: Ana Acevedo, RCI’s senior vice president of marketing and Portada Travel Marketing Board Member, tells Portada that online reviews and user generated content marketing are growing in importance in Latin America.
Why it matters: As a result, RCI is finding new ways to leverage online reviews. The aim is to improve customer communications, build market credibility and increase sales.

Every time a customer stays at one of RCI’s thousands of affiliated time share properties across the globe, RCI surveys them. RCI asks them to rate their experience, right down to the most minute detail, including the quality of the resort’s housekeeping services.

RCI is one of the two largest timeshare companies in the world and works with more than 4,000 resorts.

Ana Laura Acevedo
Ana Laura Acevedo, Senior Vice President Marketing & Business Development, RCI Latin America

When an RCI member makes a negative remark on the company’s rating system, RCI follows up by contacting the resort where the customer stayed.

“We let the resort know. That way they can answer directly,” RCI’s senior vice president of marketing Ana Laura Acevedo tells Portada.

“Reviews are very important. In an industry likes ours, they are key because consumers don’t always believe what you say as a brand.”

Reviews are very important. In an industry likes ours, they are key because consumers don’t always believe what you say as a brand.

Online reviews now enjoy an outsized role in consumer purchasing decisions. Consequently, RCI has responded aggressively. It is turning customers’ comments into a powerful way of building brand credibility and communications.

User generated content marketing gaining weight in LATAM

“The importance of user generated content marketing in the form of online reviews is growing rapidly in Latin America. It’s already pretty strong in more mature markets like Brazil,” Acevedo says.

Five years ago, Brazilians Adriana Coelho and Andreia Assunção founded the Facebook page Viajando pela RCI to help consumers make decisions about purchasing and staying at timeshare properties.

The page has more than 7,000 followers. Comments by consumers can literally make or break a resort, according to Acevedo.

“It has gained so much strength that we are partners with them and we sponsor some of their events,” Acevedo tells Portada.

Questions about RCI that appear on the page are sent directly to RCI’s social media.

In fact, the Facebook page attracts so much attention that the page administrator sends inquiries about RCI properties directly to RCI’s salespeople, Coelho said at an event in June sponsored by the Brazilian publication Turismo Compartilhado.

Trip Advisor dominates

Trip Advisor is the most powerful and important online review site for the time share industry, according to Acevedo.

Recognizing Trip Advisor’s influence, RCI has an agreement with the site that allows RCI to republish on RCI websites Trip Advisor reviews written by RCI members.

RCI has also found other  =ways to leverage the power of online reviews by consumers.

Software created by Chute Apps allows Facebook users who are RCI members to instantly authorize RCI to use timeshare experience photos the users post on Facebook in official RCI marketing.

The importance of online reviews is growing rapidly in Latin America. It’s already pretty strong in more mature markets like Brazil.

Photos taken by RCI’s customers reduce the need to rely on stock photography for its marketing. They also carry a lot more credibility with consumers, according to Acevedo.

Using RCI customers’ photos has generated an increase in the click-through rate on all of RCI’s email, Facebook and Twitter campaigns, Acevedo says.

Social media monitoring

Take for instance, Social media monitoring. The technology also plays an important role in RCI’s ability to respond to and leverage the power of online reviews.

RCI now uses the services of Revinate to monitor what guests are saying about RCI’s affiliated resorts.

“It pulls reviews from Booking.com, Expedia, tourism boards and anyone that has a travel site where members can post reviews. It’s like a meta-searcher of reviews,” Acevedo tells Portada.

Using Revinate’s social media monitoring services also enables RCI to respond quickly to negative reviews.

Recent studies provide overwhelming evidence of the importance of online reviews in customers’ purchasing decisions.

95% of shoppers read online reviews before making a purchase.

Recent studies provide overwhelming evidence of the importance of online reviews in customers’ purchasing decisions.

According to a compilation of studies by the website G2 Crowd Learning Hub, nearly 95% of shoppers read online reviews before making a purchase. Seventy-two percent of customers don’t take action until they have read reviews.

“If you run a small business today, the single most important thing you can do to attract new customers is to take control of your online review score on sites like Yelp, Google My Business, FourSquare and TripAdvisor,” a recent column in Forbes Magazine advised readers.

What: We looked at the top 15 online retail sites visited by shoppers in the US in November of this year and how they ranked and scored in number of visitors.
Why it matters: Total visits to the retail sites ranked by comScore increased by 68,000 over the prior month as the holiday shopping season kicked off in November. Retailer Kohl’s enjoyed a significant boost as it jumped to 6th place from 11th place in October, while Walmart saw a 1-percent increase in its share of all visits to the top 15 sites over the previous month.

 

Number of visitors to the Top 15 e-commerce sites in the US, November 2018
Total Audience, Home and Work, PC/Laptop1,072,757
SiteTotal Unique Visitors
Amazon sites20,1899*
Wal-Mart13,1986
eBay10,7208
Apple.com Worldwide sites81,851
Target Corporation73,750
Kohl’s Corporation61,861
Best Buy sites56,890
Samsung Group52,247
ETSY.com49,835
The Home Depot Inc.47,743
Kohl’s Corporation46,569
WISH.COM45,310
Ticketmaster42,124
Macy’s Inc.39,712
LOWES.com33,772

(Source: comScore)
*Visits shown in the thousands.

Key Insights

Kohl’s CEO Michelle Gass’ strategy of delivering an omnichannel experience to shoppers, and especially millennials, looks like it paid off in visits to the retailer’s website in November. Kohl’s jumped from 11th place in the October comScore rankings to 6th place in November. Visits to the retailer’s site in the US totaled just over 61,000. Kohl’s traditional customer is over 50-years or older, but Gass’ goal is to attract more millennials both online and in stores, according to recent reporting by Forbes.

Meanwhile, Walmart’s aggressive online strategy appears to have paid off in November with a handsome 1 percent jump in its share of all visits to the top 15 sites for a total of 131,986 in November compared to 114,085 in October.

Overall visits to the top 15 ranked sites increased by nearly 70,000 over the previous month as the holiday shopping season kicked into high gear.

  • Amazon saw a slight dip in its share of overall visits to the topped 15 ranked sites, dropping from 20.9 percent in October to 18.8 percent in November.
  • Amazon, Walmart, eBay and Apple.com continued to occupy the top 4 slots in that order.
  • Best Buy also saw a surge in online visits as the holiday shopping season kicked in, increasing its ranking of 12th place in October to 7th place in November.
  • Macy’s, too, saw an increase of 11,412 visits in November compared to October.
  • eBay saw a dip in its share of all visits to the top 15 ranked sites, from nearly 12 percent in October to 9.9 percent in November.
  • Kohl’s showed the greatest jump in visits among the top 15 sites, with a total of 61,861, a 19,604 increase in visits over the month of October.
  • com’s share of all visits to the top 15 ranked sites remained steady in November at 7.6 percent compared to 7.7 percent the month before.

 

Our bi-weekly summary of the most exciting recent news in marketing technology and trends. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

Brands are flocking to Amazon to advertise according to the giant online marketer’s third quarter financial report. Amazon is expected to double its advertising revenues by the end of this year, according to reporting by ClickZ. Revenue from advertising topped $2.5 billion in the quarter, 123% greater than the same period a year ago.

Marriott is facing criticism from cyber experts and a class action suit after revealing that hackers stole data from 500 million of it guests, including passport numbers. Cyber experts told USA Today the hack could have been avoided if a smaller data breach in 2015 had been properly handled.

Facebook is facing more problems after a cache of its executives’ emails were released by lawmakers in the United Kingdom. According to reporting by The New York Times, the emails reveal Facebook executives gave some brands, including Airbnb and Netflix, favored access to users’ data, while shutting out others. Facebook responded saying it has never sold its users’ data.

Cyber Monday sales reached $7.9 billion breaking all records this year in the US, (a 19.3 percent increase over 2017), making it the biggest online shopping day in US history, according to reporting by ClickZ and Adobe. Mobile commerce shattered records on Cyber Weekend, with smart phones and tablets making up more than 65% of retail site visits, a 32.1% increase over the previous year. Direct website traffic showed a slight decline.

The season is looking very merry for online holiday shopping in the US this year, according to a survey by Splitit. The survey showed 40% of consumers planning to do the majority of their shopping online. Local stores ranked second at 25%. Brick and mortar stores offering payments with monthly installments could find a significant advantage over online sites without that option, the survey showed.

Instagram has announced it will use AI tools to go after and eliminate paid-for likes and followers. The social media site plans to aggressively seek to identify users that are paying third-party providers to increase their numbers of likes and followers. “Recently, we’ve seen accounts use third-party apps to artificially grow their audience,” Instagram said in a release reported by Netimperative.

The US government may be under-reporting the number of Americans without access to high-speed broadband internet. A Microsoft study found that 162.8 million lacked the access compared to the 24.7 million reported by the FCC. According to reporting by Endgadget, the fault lies with FCC’s data gathering which over-reports actual access to broadband services.

What: Ivan Barona Gonzalez, Head of Business Intelligence at Grupo Bursátil Mexicano, gave Portada Mexico a bird’s eye view of Mexico’s consumer finance and banking landscape.
Why it matters: Barona explains why GBM has chosen education and attraction over pure product promotion to attract new customers in the face of Mexico’s low rate of consumer use of banking and financial services.

Mexico’s unbanked population poses both challenges and opportunities to banks and financial services companies looking for new customers.

According to Ivan Barona Gonzalez, Head of Business Intelligence at Grupo Bursátil Mexicano, roughly 76 million Mexicans—about forty-percent of adults between the ages of 18 and 70—don’t have a bank account. Forty-six percent do not have access to formal credit and fifty-two percent don’t have formal retirement accounts.

The challenge for GBM is how to turn this landscape of the unbanked into a land of opportunity for financial services.

“We try to educate people,” Barona told participants at last month’s Portada México in Mexico City. “Given the needs of the Mexican market, we consider that financial education plays an important opportunity.”

“People should, first and foremost know that they have choices, and then make the best choices according to their needs.”

GBM is an investment bank with more than 35 years of experience and is currently the largest in Mexico as measured by traded volume on the Mexican stock exchange.

GBM’s parent owner, Corporativo GBM, operates subsidiaries in México, Brazil, Chile and the U.S. Three decades of experience in the Mexican market have made GBM an authoritative brand in Mexico’s investment industry.

The story is not about us, it is about what you can become with our services and products.

But the focus of GBM’s marketing isn’t on its reputation. Instead, the focus is on how customers can benefit from its products and services.

“The story is not about us, it is about what you can become with our services and products,” Barona told Portada Mexico.

Focus on the consumer

According to Barona, GBM marketing is focused on markets (what’s happening), knowledge (what should I know or learn?) and lifestyle (why is it important for me, what can I do with this?).

One example is GBM’s recent “Piggo” campaign.

The Piggo website offers consumers a downloadable app they can use to plan savings for a trip to Europe, a new car or any other important goal.

The app helps users to define their goals and the money they would like to save to reach them, and then creates a schedule of savings through automatic deposits so users can “save without realizing it.”

A Piggo challenge encouraged users to post pictures of their travel experiences on social media.

“We identified that money can be considered as primitive…but it gives you the freedom to connect with your hopes, wishes, and goals,” Barona explained.

We identified that money can be considered as primitive…but it gives you the freedom to connect with your hopes, wishes, and goals.

The campaign isn’t as much about selling a product as it is about how people can succeed in savings,” Barona told Portada Mexico.

“The campaign was addressed for a demographic that was eager to travel the world, and aimed for empathy and virality.”

For an opportunity to participate in thought-provoking panels and a chance to network with the leading brand marketers in Latin America, join Portada Mexico 2019 here.

 

Big potential

In a question and answer session following his presentation, Barona emphasized the potential GBM sees in the vast numbers of Mexicans who don’t have savings, investment or retirement accounts.

Two-thirds of Mexicans do save, but through informal means. While in the US, six out of every 10 Americans invest in the stock market, in Mexico the ratio is 1 to 500.

Meanwhile, advances in technology have lowered the cost of extending existing financial infrastructure to serve new customers.

“Technology is usually capital expensive on the early stages, however, once you reach a specific size, and surpass the breakeven, you can get new customers on a marginal or even negligible cost, thus, achieving exponential returns,” Barona told Portada.

“We are aware of the potential in the market,” he said.

We are introducing a bi-weekly summary of the most exciting recent news in marketing technology and trends. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

Marketers report the highest ROI on CRM over all automated customer technologies,  according to a new study conducted by the Harvard Business School and ON24 as reported by Media Post. Automated customer services ranked second followed by monitoring of social media and communications management, the survey said according to reporting by Media Post. Marketers surveyed warned of the risk of disappointing customers with overuse of automated responses and interactions.

Privacy International has hit Acxiom, Oracle, Criteo, Quantcast, Tapad, Equifax and Experian with a suit claiming violations of new GDPR rules. Complaints were issued in the UK, France and Ireland, according to reporting by Media Post, alleging wrongdoing in the compiling of data to build profiles of people that allegedly violates confidentiality.

Consumers feel more comfortable with brands depending upon the channel used to communicate with them, according to a study by Invoca. Personal interactions were preferred over all other types. In-person, phone and email contacts were preferred in that order. The respondents interviewed said a personal email could rectify a bad experience with a brand. Online chat rated below email in most industries covered.  Invoca surveyed 1,000 consumers in the U.S., and compiled the findings into a report alongside data from Adobe’s Experience Index.

The mobile location platform creator Teemo has joined up with data company LiveRamp to create a new, more powerful retail marketing platform. The combined platform will allow retail marketers to access granular CRM data revealing customer activity that is tied to specific retail locations for maximizing marketing investments at the store level. The new platform uses first-party data on consumers, according to reporting by DM News.

Spotify has grown its audience to 20% of all internet users in the US, according to reporting by Emarketer. Spotify’s audience of 58.4 million is still below Pandora’s 75.9 million users. Spotify’s user base is expected to grow by “double digits” in 2018. The report attributed Spotify’s success to its strategic partnerships, including with Hulu, and millennials’ attraction to Spotify’s personalization features. Emarketer predicts the audience for digital listeners in the US to hit 201.5 million this year.

Amazon now owns third place in all digital advertising in the US but remains well behind Google and Facebook, according to reporting by Emarketer. Advertising on Amazon will make up 4.1% of all digital ad spending in the country with marketers reporting they plan to increase their advertising spend on Amazon next year. A survey by Marin Software this year showed retail advertisers more favorably inclined towards Amazon’s platform compared with other industries.

What: We looked at the top 15 online retail sites visited by Hispanic shoppers in the US in September of this year and how they scored in numbers of visitors.
Why it matters: Target suffered a near 2% drop in September in its share of online shoppers among the 15 top visited sites by Hispanics in the US. The retailer fell from fourth place in August to sixth place in September according to rankings by comScore. The retailer’s stock, however, has risen 30% this year, according to Barron’s.

Number of Hispanic visitors to the Top 15 e-commerce sites in the US, September 2018
Total Audience, Home and Work, PC/Laptop139,250
SiteTotal Unique Visitors
Amazon Sites28456
Wal-Mart17151
eBay16014
Apple.com Worldwide Sites10535
Samsung Group8839
Target Corporation8276
WISH.COM7497
ETSY.COM7307
The Home Depot, Inc.6382
Ticketmaster6133
Best Buy Sites5357
Kohl’s Corporation4672
Macy’s Inc.4544
LOWES.COM4139
Wayfair3948

(Source: comScore; Site visits in the thousands.)

Target dropped two places in the top 15 most-visited retail sites by Hispanics in the US in September. Target’s share of the total visits dropped from 7.5% in August to 5.9% in September. Apple bumped up a ranking to fourth place with 7.5% of visits to all sites. Wayfair slipped below Macy’s, Kohl’s, and Lowe’s into last place for September.

  • Ticketmaster dropped two places in the ranking of the top 15 most visited sites in September but didn’t suffer much of a loss in its share of visits (4.4%) compared with August (4.5%).
  • Samsung Group increased its share of visits slightly, rising above Target.
  • As with non-Hispanic visitors to the top 15 online retail sites, Apple increased its share of all visits among Hispanic shoppers to 6.3% from 6.2% in August.
  • Both Kohl’s and Macy’s moved up a ranking in September.
  • Online home and furniture retailer Wayfair took a hit in its ranking, dropping from 12th place in August to last place in September. The company’s stock dropped 25% in September, according to Motley Fool.
  • Target dropped behind Apple and Samsung in September’s rankings, losing nearly 2% of its share of all online visits.

What: We looked at the top 15 online retail sites visited by shoppers in the US in September of this year and how they scored in numbers of visitors.

Why it matters: Anticipation over Apple’s release of two new iPhones and major product updates this fall may explain an increase in visitors to its retail site in the US. Visits increased by nearly 1%, continuing an upward trend since July. Visits to the department store retailer Kohl’s site jumped two rankings to outpace visits to Best Buy, Lowe’s and Macy’s.

Number of visitors to the Top 15 e-commerce sites in the US, September 2018
Total Audience, Home and Work, PC/Laptop939,255
SiteTotal Unique Visitors
Amazon Sites198375
Wal-Mart115506
eBay107869
Apple.com Worldwide Sites73558
Target Corporation57236
Samsung Group50125
ETSY.COM47388
The Home Depot, Inc.43144
WISH.COM41739
Kohl’s Corporation38269
Best Buy Sites36248
Ticketmaster35995
LOWES.COM32131
Wayfair31792
Macy’s Inc.29880

(Source: comScore)

Visits to Apple’s online retail site jumped from 7.3% of all visits to the top 15 sites to 8.1% in September, according to the latest rankings from comScore. Amazon, Walmart, eBay and Apple continued to dominate the top four positions in the rankings in that order. The department store retailer Kohl’s managed to move up a position compared to the previous month, from 12th to 10th place. Macy’s took last place in the rankings, the same position it occupied the month before.

  • Macy’s saw a slight uptick in visitors compared to August, but remained in last place at 29,880 visitors in September.
  • Apple has seen an upward trend in visitors to its retail site since July of this year, topping out at 73,558 visitors in September.
  • Ticketmaster dropped two places in the rankings to 12th place in September from 10th place in August, for a total of 35,005 visitors.
  • The Home Depot continues to outpace Lowe’s in numbers of online visitors to its website, seeing 43,144 visitors in September compared to 32,131 for Lowe’s. Lowe’s has announced it will close 47 stores in the US and Canada.
  • Best Buy held on to its 10th place position in September, with a total of 36,248 visits compared to 39,329 in August.
  • Target continues to outpace Kohl’s, Macy’s Best Buy, Lowe’s and The Home Depot in number of online visitors, coming in at 57,236 in September.
  • The majority of all online site visits by shoppers still belongs to Amazon, Walmart and eBay, at 21.1%, 12.2% and 11.4% respectively.

What: Rappi Director of Marketing Carlos Leal explains how the e commerce company and mobile app Rappi built its success on customer-focused performance rather than technology and branding alone.

Why it matters: By constantly focusing on the user experience, the on-demand delivery application operates in more than 28 cities in Latin America, has more than 80,000 users, and is worth US $1 billion.

Experts value the Colombian delivery start-up Rappi at US $1 billion, according to Bloomberg News. Three friends founded Rappi as a way to provide quick and easy restaurant take-out delivery. The mobile app now offers more than 50,000 products and services, operates in seven Latin American countries, and has more than 1,000 employees.

What’s behind Rappi’s huge success? Surprisingly, it isn’t just about branding, or even technology.

The key to Rappi’s eye-popping growth is a laser-like focus on the user experience. “An application can’t live on branding alone,” Director of Marketing Carlos Leal recently told participants at Portada México.

“We always listen to the user and we adapt to the needs of the market. We are service-based, not technology-based.”

E Commerce Risk-taking and experimentation

Rappi constantly innovates how it communicates with its users and how it can better respond to their needs.

The successful start-up’s in-house creative team launches multiple advertising campaigns targeting the same audience. They then measures what works.

What can’t be measured doesn’t have value.

“What can’t be measured doesn’t have value,” Leal told Portada Mexico, adding, “All communications with users must be personalized to the user type, and not be generic.”

The acquisition of new users depends on performance, so Rappi’s marketing model is less about branding, and more focused on growth and performance.

And risk-taking is central to e commerce company Rappi’s approach to its growth. “We are always experimenting,” Leal said, and that includes both the products and services that Rappi offers.

“We’re always producing more content and new content,” Leal said.

“We listen to the user and adapt to his or her needs. If you don’t, the business will fail,” Leal emphasized.

From take-out to payment services

Rappi now operates in more than 28 cities in Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay. The platform offers more than 50,000 products and services, including tax and other payment services.

The business model offers a “Prime” customer loyalty service, like Amazon Prime. It produces a 45% increase in spending by Rappi’s Prime members, according to Leal.

Our principal work ethic is to be partners and owners at the same time we are employees.

How does Rappi adjust to the needs of a diversity of cultures and customers in its Latin American markets? Rappi doesn’t associate itself with any one country, Leal told participants at Portada Mexico.

“The language and terminology for each country is different. What works in one country doesn’t necessarily work in another,” Leal noted. Rappi individualizes its content, he said, to the local market.

Rappi also segments its content based upon the user’s mobile device. “We target our content to the device. Segmentation is very important,” Leal told the Portada Mexico audience.

Employees as ‘partners’

Rappi’s employees are mostly young. Rappi treats them as partners and entrepreneurs rather than just workers.

The result is a more committed workforce, Leal emphasized. “Our principal work ethic is to be partners and owners at the same time we are employees.”

Rappi also looks to its employees, to be “influencers” that will move market awareness and opinion about the e commerce company app.

Just three-years-old, Rappi recently received $220 million in cash from its investors and has 20,000 couriers handling its deliveries, according to Bloomberg.

Billionaire Yuri Milner of DST Global, Sequoia Capital and the German delivery firm Delivery Hero invest in Rappi.

Magna Partners Managing Partner Nathan Lustig told Bloomberg that Rappi has found a path “where they can build a really big business.”

Get ready for Portada Mexico on October 17 2019 Portada Mexico will dive deep into how technological innovations are reshaping the Mexican and Latin American marketing space. AI, virtual reality, machine-based learning and programmatic marketing will have an important place in the agenda.

. SoImage by Freepik

What: The use of AI on marketing and advertising is turning heads and generating headlines. The latest? Computers select images and colors, improve text, sift through big data to sharpen targeting and lift customer response rates.
Why it matters: Agencies, however, say they deploy AI for more mundane but critical tasks. Those include automating repetitive work. They also encompass sorting and labeling images and videos. It saves thousands of hours of labor. As a result, it frees up in-house talent for higher-level creative output.

The brave new world of AI on marketing is here. Recent headlines boast of AI’s ability to boost customer response rates with better text, content and just the right selection of colors and images in advertising.

AI on marketing saves on labor

Marketers tell Portada, however, that they’re using AI on marketing for far more mundane but still essential agency tasks. Namely, saving thousands of hours of labor and freeing up their best talent to do what creatives do best: create.

“Our initial goal is to automate several of the manual processes that go into the content creative process,” Carmen Garcés, head of digital at Hogarth México told Portada.

Hogarth Mexico, she said, is using AI or “machine learning” to mask, rotoscope, review, organize and tag hundreds of hours of video as well as images, saving the agency thousands of hours of labor.

Artificial intelligence is also being used to sort through Hogarth’s talent database of thousands of worldwide employees to help producers select just the right resources for each project.

The time saved frees up Hogarth Mexico staff to improve and apply their skills and technical knowledge to creative output, Garcés explained in an email.

“There are a lot of talented people around the world with unique creative and technical skills. We see AI as a great support to help us leverage this talent even further and to provide novel solutions and superior output for our clients.”

Apply AI on Marketing

Applying AI tools to recognize, catalog and modify visual content provides exciting opportunities for improving work efficiency and increasing advertising’s effectiveness.

Our initial goal is to automate several of the manual processes that go into the content creative process.

“One element of targeting that is still left relatively untapped is object recognition,” wrote Tim Bosch, associate director at Resolution Media in a recent column published by Digital Commerce 360.

“AI will be the driving force that exposes this massive targeting opportunity.”

According to Bosch, Snapchat has developed the technology to recognize objects posted by users, differentiating between food, pets, and more.

“Imagine this—after analyzing a user’s image inventory, object recognition technology could calculate their individual fashion style. This style feeds into their overall profile which brands can tap into to provide personalized ad messaging.”

Researching AI on Marketing

According to Garcés, Hogarth Mexico is “talking to multiple vendors and research institutes,” about how AI could help further improve the agency’s productivity. That includes using AI to modify videos and images.

“That would allow us to remove entire elements and objects from a scene something that if done in the traditional way could take days.”

Hogarth Mexico is considering AI tools that would allow it to change out the dialogue of actors in a video. It could then substiture “a completely different phrase or even deliver the speech in a completely different language.”

It’s undeniable that the unstoppable progress of AI has made it a tool that is impossible to ignore.

“The most important opportunity for us is to leverage AI to augment our talent. And amplify the creative output of our organization and provide superior customer experience while delivering content to our clients,” Garcés told Portada.

AI frees up creative talent

At Grey Mexico, Chief Creative Officer Humberto Polar is focused on how to use AI to automate the generation of creative materials for advertising. He mentions combining of images and prices, and adapting formats in retail campaigns.

“This type of work today occupies many hours and is subject to a high level of human error. That’s precisely because it is operation-related and not creative work,” Polar told Portada.

“We should put our efforts towards automating tasks. Then people to do more much more gratifying and useful work, thus providing truly creative support to our clients.”

Grey Mexico is also using AI. Namely to analyze data, generating new understanding of the behaviors of consumers. With AI, the agency can apply its same creative thinking, but to much larger data sets.

“It’s undeniable that the unstoppable progress of AI has made it a tool that is impossible to ignore,” Polar says.

 

What: Sears has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. as the retailer struggles to maintain operations while saddled with $5.6 billion in debt and after closing more than 1,000 stores.
Why it matters: Experts tell Portada the downfall of the storied retailer won’t affect the Sears franchise in Mexico where better merchandising and e-commerce under the management of Grupo Carso, owned by Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, have built the franchise into a big hit with Mexican consumers.

The Sears franchise in Mexico may have some temporary image problems, but its success won’t be hobbled by the Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing of Sears in the United States, retail experts tell Portada.

Sears in Mexico is “booming,” retailing expert Jorge Lizan said. “I don’t see any impact for Mexico from the situation in the U.S.”

“Sears in Mexico doesn’t depend on Sears in the U.S.”

The Sears franchise in Mexico has been operated for more than 20 years by billionaire Carlos Slim’s Grupo Carso which operates the Saks Fifth Avenue franchise in Mexico as well.

Sears (Mexico) is something very different from the operation in the U.S.. It has its own merchandise strategy and independent supply chain. It has brands not available in the U.S. The merchandise quality in Mexico is better than it is in the U.S.,” Lizan said.

Sears’ decline in the U.S. can be tied to its failure to adapt to fashion trends and consumers’ growing preference for online shopping, according to Lizan.

“They never cracked the code of online sales and e-commerce, something that other department stores have been able to do.”

Online visits to Sears fall short of the top 15 most-visited online retailers in the U.S., which include Macy’s, Wal-Mart, Kohl’s, Target, Home Depot, and Lowes, according recent comScore e-commerce rankings.

Sears in Mexico doesn’t depend on Sears in the U.S.

Once a favorite of Hispanic shoppers

Sears in the U.S. has traditionally enjoyed a positive relationship with Hispanic shoppers, especially among older generations. But its merchandising strategy aims at lower-income groups, a distinct difference with Sears in Mexico.

The Mexico franchise targets higher-income groups and has placed stores in well-off neighborhoods like Santa Fe in Mexico City, and in the new, up-scale shopping mall Averanda in Cuernavaca.

Sears in Mexico is more comparable with Macy’s in the U.S., Lizan said, although the franchise may find its image tarnished by the U.S. bankruptcy filing.

“Sears in Mexico may have to take measures to protect the public image of its brand given the wide news coverage of the bankruptcy filing in the U.S.”

Lost luster, fewer store visits in the U.S.

Outdated stores, complaints about poor service, and the pursuit of undocumented immigrants by U.S. authorities have contributed to a decline in Hispanic shoppers’ visits to Sears in the

Juan Jose Nunez, CEO, Vertical3Media
Juan Jose Nunez, CEO, Vertical3 Media

U.S, Juan Jose Nuñez, founder and CEO of Vertical3 Media  told Portada.

Visits by Hispanic shoppers to Sears stores close to the border with Mexico have also declined in recent months which Nuñez said could be a result of “hardened immigration laws and raids.”

They never cracked the code of online sales and e-commerce, something that other department stores have been able to do.

The impact of the Trump administration’s immigration policies is affecting in-store visits to other retailers as well, Nuñez said.

Moreover, younger Hispanic shoppers love to shop online, but Sears’ e-commerce offerings in the U.S. are “very poor.”

“Hispanic shoppers, especially younger ones, are shopping more online. They are visiting physical stores less.”

Better online offerings in Mexico

The Carso Group operates almost 100 Sears stores throughout Mexico, invests in their modernization and renovation, and is expanding product offerings with a focus on fashion.

The consumer in Mexico is also directed to Sears’ online site in Mexico, Nuñez told Portada.

Sears in the U.S., however, will have to go through a “profound change” to attract younger shoppers and Hispanics should it successfully emerge from bankruptcy, he added.

Sears in the U.S. must go through a very big, deep change for Hispanics to feel identified with the brand and feel comfortable shopping online with them.

“Other retailers have adapted to the new big consumers: millennials. They have the money and the knowledge and you have to know how to attract them.”

WP to LinkedIn Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com