Susan Kuchinskas @susankuchinskas


Yesterday morning, during a Time Warner investor meeting, Home Box Office Chairman and CEO Richard Pepler said that HBO will launch a stand-alone, over-the-top service that would allow consumers to watch HBO content without having a cable subscription – and let HBO reap what he characterized as hundreds of millions of dollars in additional revenue.

hbo latinoHe said HBO will sell stand-alone services in the United States and two other countries, with the aim of expanding eventually to every nation that it currently reaches via cable.

Whether HBO Latino will be part of this initiative or whether either of the two non-U.S. launch countries will be in Latin America are still to be determined. A spokesperson for HBO Latino told Portada, “At this time we are not elaborating beyond the statement that was issued today.”

Overall I think that a streaming HBO Latino has potential. We know that Hispanics are entertainment-hungry and digitally savvy, and brands are eager to engage with them through new channels.

Karina Dobarro, vice president and managing director of multicultural brand strategy at Horizon Media, notes that HBO will not necessarily include ads in its over-the-top offering; it may use a Netflix-like subscription model instead

But let’s play what-if, as long as HBO is thinking about shaking things up

Anel Hooper, associate media director for Bromley Communications, thinks this is a definite win for consumers. “There are a lot of cord-cutters out there. They’re trying to find other sources to watch television programs,” she says. While Netflix doesn’t include advertising, she points out that Hulu does – and advertising could be part of HBO’s plan to earn millions more dollars.

Maria Lopez Knowles
Maria Lopez Knowles

This move absolutely makes sense for consumers, and therefore for HBO, according to Maria Lopez-Knowles, CMO of Pulpo Media. She says, “Fragmented media and distributed content is the new reality, especially among Hispanics and the Hispanic Millennial in particular. Consumers now own both the remote control and the Programming Executive title. They choose to consume content and stream programming when they want to and in their own device of choice.” Based on this, she adds, advertising on an HBO OTT service makes perfect sense. “It’s a great idea whose time has come,” she says. And, of course, it makes even better sense for advertisers that want to reach highly mobile Hispanics.

Whether Bromley recommends advertising on streaming video to clients depends on the demographic they’re trying to reach, according to Hooper. “If the target demographic is using their smartphones and tablets and streaming, then yes, we have recommended that to our clients.”

Lee Vann, Captura Group
Lee Vann, Captura Group

Lee Vann, CEO of Captura Group, says, “Overall I think that a streaming HBO Latino has potential.  We know that Hispanics are entertainment-hungry and digitally savvy, and brands are eager to engage with them through new channels.  They key will be for HBO to curate and produce content that appeals to Hispanics in a relevant and authentic way.  If they can accomplish this, Hispanics will watch, and brands will follow.”

Not all advertisers may be ready to jump on board an over-the-top HBO, Lopez-Knowles says. “But the more progressive advertisers are certainly starting to understand that we’ve entered a brave, new world.”

The Multichannel Network (MCN) World is smoking hot. YouTube content has grown up – so much so that it’s growing off the platform, thanks to multichannel networks, or MCNs, that are investing in original content and investigating new distribution channels. Is this the future of TV? What major players told  Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.


On September 26, NBTV Studios launched New Buzz TV, an over-the-top multichannel network that will curate content across six channels, including multicultural. Its aim is to provide a single distribution platform for premium content producers, offering them content development, talent management and video production services. At the same time, it will partner with brands to create original premium video content.

In a world where cable and the web are fragmented, we would become a tile in this digital universe.

“It’s about identifying things that have high production value and good storytelling that might have an existing audience on another platform,” says CEO Nicholas Buzzell. “The mission is to make it easier for people to discover premium content and help them find things.”

Original programming is also part of the plan. Buzzell, who helped launch AOL Latino, has been producing Hispanic video for several years, and some of this will be distributed on New Buzz TV. For example, NBTV Studios produced and owns a feature film starring Puerto Rican comedian Luis Raúl that had a theatrical release in Puerto Rico and was available as video-on-demand in the United States and Latin America. It’s also planning a show called “Gazpacho,” a program that will recap the previous day’s news and entertainment, with commentary from hosts.

Buzzell says all content deals will be non-exclusive, and he’s offering producers a share of ad revenue, as well as of future subscription revenue.

Producers rock

Video producers represented by MCNs benefit by being able to focus on content instead of having to take incessant meetings and wade through contracts – oh, yeah, and by increasing their revenue.

Karla Celis MiTu Influencer
Karla Celis, MiTu Influencer

Those meetings with brands could be incessant, indeed. There’s huge demand for placement in the hottest channels – and Hispanic is caliente. MiTú recently partnered with Maker Studios, provider of video content for millennials, to provide culturally relevant content to brands targeting the U.S. Hispanic market. Maker did have direct relationships with a host of brands directly, but it didn’t have expertise in multicultural content. Says Charlie Echeverry, MiTú’s chief revenue officer “Maker was getting inquiries directly about talking to Hispanic audiences. Their response prior to our partnership was that they didn’t specialize in it.”

MCNs usually offers various sorts of talent management and consultations on content. NBTV offers original content development, talent management, and video production services to celebrities.

MiTú’s top influencers have growth managers assigned to their channels to help them develop better content and take advantage of trending topics. For example, during the World Cup, a food channel might be advised to develop recipes tied to countries that were playing, while a beauty channel might get a suggestion to do a spot on what to use to paint your face in your team’s colors.

Echeverry says this is one of the biggest values MiTú offers to producers. “Recruiting them is easy,” he says. “The real value is in building them up to something greater than what they currently are, on a personal level but also through technology,” such as analytics.

This is the first of two articles exploring how Multichannel Networks (MCNs) work and their role in the emerging online video ecosystem. The role of Multichannel networks in the Latin Digital Media world will be analyzed in Portada’s upcoming Evolving America Summit at Digital Hollywood on October 21 in the Ritz Carlton, Marina del Rey, Ca.

A recap of major news on the marketing and media front from around the web compiled by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.

Loco por iPhone 6?
The iPhone 6 may have sold 10 million units in its first three days, but Apple’s penetration in Hispanic and Latin American markets is lower, according to the Orlando Business Journal. Experian says 53 percent of Hispanic smartphone owners have an Android and 34 percent have an iPhone; iPhone penetration is even lower in Latin America: In Latin America, 86 percent of Argentineans, 90 percent of Brazilians and 80 percent of Mexicans use Android cellphones. Also, according to Kantar data, more people in Mexico use Microsoft’s Windows phone than the iPhone.
Hernan Tagliani, president of The Group Advertising, thinks this is because Latins value price, convenience and reliability. Many iPhone users think they’re easier to use than other phones, but in Latin America, Macs are seen as less user-friendly, and that likely translates to phones, as well, he says. Apple is great at attracting early adopters, but it needs to hit harder on the convenience messaging.

Pork Inspirations
Everyone needs a Hispanic internet hub, even pork producers. Pork Checkoff, a project of the National Pork Board, launched, a resource for information on nutrition, cuts, health and safety, as well as cooking tips and recipes.  There’s a strong social media component, too. The Pork Checkoff is promoting the hashtag #sabrososmomentos; it also has a Facebook page,, the Twitter handel @PorkTeInspira and an Instagram account.

Mas Tacos por Tu
Taco Bell turned to Instagram to help launch its new breakfast line, targeting 18- to 44-year-olds. A series of sepia-toned sponsored photos reached 12.5 million people in the target demo in the U.S. across a four-week period. Click through from the blog to a full case study. This general-market campaign uses the Spanglish tagline launched in 2012. With all the interest in Hispanic culture and media, we think more companies should go this route.

Arnold adds Hispanic Desk
While the industry considers the efficacy of the general-market approach, Arnold is having it both ways, developing a Hispanic practice that will be integrated into the agency. Arnold Adweek quoted Arnold CEO Pam Hamlin saying, “They are an integrated part of our team, just like this capability is an integrated part of our services.” We’re getting that déjà vu feeling: The debate – and this move to integrate – reminds us of the early days of digital, when agencies couldn’t decide where or how to expand their digital capabilities.

How We Became “Hispanic”
Here’s a reminder from a UC Berkeley prof about where the term “Hispanic” came from: Unlike a lot of demographic segments that seem to have been invented to benefit marketers and journalists, G. Cristina Mora writes that Americans of Puerto Rican and Mexican heritage wanted the U.S. government to recognize them as separate from “white” citizens. Mora, an assistant professor of sociology at UC-Berkeley and the author of Making Hispanics: How Activists, Bureaucrats and Media Constructed A New American, says the term has enabled Hispanics to unify while celebrating their diversity.

Segmenting Is Key in Attracting Hispanic Ad Dollars

The vast majority of advertisers have engaged in bilingual advertising, according to an academic study of 130 brands by Amy Jo Coffey, an associate professor of telecommunication management at the University of Florida – and 93.9 percent of those campaigns were in Spanish. Coffey found that the ability to segment Hispanic consumers was the most important factor in allocating advertising budgets.

Yo Soy El Artista - Season 1It’s not enough to simply tweet to get fans excited about watching the next series episode or tune into live coverage of an event. Today’s social campaigns are entertainment events in themselves that can go on to gain earned media of their own and even be media properties in their own right.

In partnership with Latin World Entertainment, Telemundo brought the social media world into the real world by recruiting 100 of the top influencers to help judge Yo Soy el Artista, its new talent competition cum reality show. The 100 social media stars, chosen based on based on their impact and followings on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Vine, helped the show’s panel of permanent judges narrow down the contestants during the first phase of the competition.

Yo Soy el Artista airs simultaneously in the U.S. on Telemundo and throughout Latin America on the cable networks E! and Telemundo Internacional.

In addition to bringing the 100 social media mavens to Los Angeles for the auditions, Telemundo held a social media summit for them, Yo Soy el Influencer, in which they could network but also learn about aspects of media and business including intellectual property issues and marketing.
YSEA Influencers (2)

All these social influencers have created their brands out of nothing.

“The show required that we had 100 social influencers physically on the set. They are really powerful at the top of their game, so we realized we need to give them something of value more than just coming to the show. All of them have created their brands out of nothing,” says Peter Blacker, executive vice president of digital and emerging business, Telemundo. ” “[We decided to] create a summit so they could meet each other.”

The content recorded during the taping will, of course, air as part of the show. But Telemundo hopes that the 100 influencers also will fire up social media with more content, ideally by using the #YoSoyelInfluencer hashtag.

“There’s a completely blurred line of where the TV show begins and ends and the social influencers,” Blacker notes. “Because the influencer isn’t’ saying, ‘I love this show.’ They’re saying, ‘I’m in this show, come to see me.'”

The influencer isn’t’ saying, ‘I love this show.’ They’re saying, ‘I’m in this show, come to see me.

In addition to the influencers’ appearances on Yo Soy el Artista itself, Telemundo scattered their appearances all over its TV content. The morning and afternoon shows interviewed them, and they showed up in news segments, as well.

influencer on facebook“We didn’t give them a specific guide and say, ‘You have to do this.’ We said, ‘Go do what you do best.'” Viners could Vine, bloggers could blog, etc. Nor were there any demands as to how much content the influencers had to produce. “They really appreciated that, and it made it 10 times more powerful,” Blacker says.

Telemundo will use various social listening tools to track the show’s appearances in social media, with the aim of eventually creating a report. Blacker sees the connection with these social media influencers as long-term. He says, “They understood this is establishing a relationship that will live way beyond the show.”

Hands-on social media

ManiCamAnother case in point is E! Entertainment’s Mani Cam, a special camera setup along the red carpet during awards ceremonies that provides close-ups of stars’ manicures. When it launched in 2012, the Washington Post’s Celebritology blog enthused, “E! revolutionizes Emmy Awards red carpet coverage with mani cam.” The Mani Cam continues to draw coverage from major news organizations, and it continues to live on E Online.

To complement the live Mani-Cam feature for E Online Latino, InPulse Digital created a Facebook app that let fans upload photos of their own manicures. It was promoted to viewers in Argentina, Venezuela, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru with geo-targeted Facebook ads.

“What we do a lot with TV content is create something parallel to what’s offline,” says Elisabeth Bohlmann, InPulse Digital’s EVP of client services.

Fans could submit photos via Instagram using the hashtag #manicam. The application automatically identified and uploaded photos immediately to the Facebook app. The app has been relaunched for multiple events, including the Grammys and the Academy Awards. For the 2013 Golden Globes, for example, the four-day marketing campaign included posts, ads, photo albums, and the tab itself. The campaign garnered 8,000 new page fans, 38, 200 clicks on the app tab, and 206,000 actions from ads.

Bohlmann notes that it’s now important for brands to buy advertising on Facebook for campaigns like this. “Today, if you don’t invest in advertising on Facebook, organic reach on average has gone down to about 2 percent,” she says. This campaign included sponsored posts.

InPulse manages all social media for E Online Latino, so the agency can use multiple social media channels to engage with fans. InPulse can’t directly correlate social media activity with increased viewing of TV shows, but the agency does monitor “tune in” type social media chatter. Bohlmann says, “When we see the interaction rising, we know we have more people watching. It’s not a direct correlation, but gives us a sense of what’s working.”

A recap of major news on the marketing and media front from around the web compiled by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.

Heritage of conscious consumption

NielsenNielsen celebrates “conscious consumers” during Hispanic Heritage month, with vignettes of real consumers appearing every Monday on its Multicultural YouTube channel from September 15 through October 15. The series features responsible shoppers, that is, ones who research companies prior to making a purchase and who are social change agents for their communities. The videos include interviews with featured consumers, scenes from their daily life and stats from Nielsen. The public is encouraged to take part in the conversation by using the hashtag #ConsciousConsumer.

Hispanics like digital

Another item in the not-so-late-breaking news department: The YuMe and SMG Multicultural survey finds US Hispanics are an emerging force in digital video interaction. Okay, we knew that, but stats to back it up are always welcome. According to the survey of 12,100 consumers, Hispanic households spend 68 percent more time watching digital videos compared to non-Hispanics. For a meatier take, read Carolina Re’s interview with the YuMe research team. You can download the whole research report here.

Targeted videos increase engagement 4.5X

Here’s an eye-opening stat: According to Nicholas Segura, owner of Somos marketing agency, when he produces and publishes videos for clients, their nonpaid, organic engagement goes up 450 percent per video. Segura talked to the Kansas City Star about why the total market approach won’t work.

XoomXoom Campaign Highlights Customer Stories

Digital money transfer service Xoom launched a new campaign with two TV spots. The Spanish-language campaign highlights the reliability and convenience of its service for sending money abroad.

YaVeo aims at mobile Millennials

DirecTV is lining up content for a new, over-the-top service aimed at Hispanics – and it’s just inked a deal with Univision, according to Reuters. The online video service, to be called YaVeo, will be aimed at digital-video hungry Millennials.

Content connection

Camille Padilla Dalmau gives the five best tips for content marketing to Hispanics. While they’re not surprising, they can’t be reiterated enough, can they?

A recap of major news on the marketing and media front from around the web compiled by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.

Dennys  Denny’s “Likes” Hispanics

The restaurant chain is expanding is Hispanic marketing with a dedicated Facebook page that will offer original and curated content. Denny’s vice president of marketing John Dillon told Nation’s Restaurant News that, while the company actively reaches Latino consumers in a variety of ways, in both English and Spanish, ” So instead of taking a general-market idea and pushing it in the same way to Hispanics, why not create content targeted more directly at them? That should get better engagement.”

At the same time, Denny’s has found that Hispanics like the same mainstream grub that general-market consumers do – with the occasional addition of chorizo.

Pandora Beats Hispanic Streaming Sites

pandora mexicanWe knew that Pandora was popular with Latinos, but this popular? According to ComScore’s June numbers, 25 percent of Pandora’s total 76.4 million active monthly unique visitors are Hispanic. This makes it the top streaming music site for Hispanics – beating Univision Digital’s 10.5 million monthly uniques.

Billboard notes – as we have before – that Pandora has carefully created channels to appeal to a wide variety of tastes, with subgenres for Latin, Puerto Rican and Mexican. Meanwhile, Pandora’s strength in mobile appeals to highly mobile Hispanics.

Marketers Miss Out on Digital Hispanics

Lee Vann, Captura Group
Lee Vann, Captura Group

Lee Vann of Captura Group analyzed Adage’s latest Hispanic Fact Pack – and found that media buyers are under-spending on digital to reach this group. He points out that, while Hispanics over-index for all kinds of digital media, last year marketers invested only 7 percent of their Hispanic budgets on digital. Vann wonders whether the current buzz about the total market approach has led advertisers to think – or hope – they can reach Hispanics with general market advertising. He begs to differ.

Enough of the Hot Latinas, Please

PARLUX FRAGRANCES, LTD SOFIA BY SOFIA VERGARAFinally, here’s an opinion from an actual Hispennial. Jose Gutierrez, a staff writer for San Diego State University’s Daily Aztec, complains about the stereotypical Latino characters in TV and movies, those of the hot blood, exotic features and Spanglish. He writes, “As people, we are far more than stereotypes. As humans, we deserve to be represented as such. It goes without saying the media influences and shapes our perceptions about the world. Seeing Latinos represented almost exclusively as the aforementioned stereotypes is incredibly damaging and doesn’t go without negative repercussions.”

On the other hand, Modern Family, home to possibly TV’s best-loved Latina, has turned Sofia VErgara into a major star complete with red-carpet coverage and endorsement deals. Last year, Vergara defended the character, saying that while everyone is different, Gloria has aspects of women she knows.

What do you think is the best way to represent US Latinos?


Although details are still sketchy, Walmart’s announcement that it will create and operate its own media exchange to help its suppliers spend its media dollars based on the data WalMart obtains, has gotten mostly positive comments. What are the implications for the multicultural sector?

The retailing giant still is working on the software for Walmart Exchange, or WMX, which execs have described as “in beta.”

It’s just the natural evolution in Walmart’s decades-long big data initiative, according to Cesar Sroka, group account director for OMD. He says, “A lot of folks out there are not comfortable with it, but data can help drive a lot of decisions and effectively target who you’re going after. Walmart has millions of shoppers every week, so they have lots of data.”

Walmart will combine its own retail and online sales, gathered in close to real time, with social media data – and the new data stream coming from its Savings Catcher, an online service that gets consumers to input in-store receipts to see if they could have gotten a better price elsewhere. WalMart is a top ten Hispanic advertiser and many of its suppliers in the CPG and other categories are major advertisers.

Cesar Sroka, OMD
Cesar Sroka, OMD

Sroka thinks that WMX could help the retailer – and the brands that sell products through Walmart – better target African-American and Hispanic customers, allowing it to move beyond language preferences to consumer attitudes and behaviors. For example, the data could reveal whether some of the accepted wisdom on Hispanic shoppers, such as they shop in families and have larger basked sizes, are really true. “It’s raising the standard for everyone,” he says.

WMX could help the retailer – and the brands that sell products through Walmart – better target African-American and Hispanic customers

OMD isn’t worried that WMX will cut out media agencies, according to Sroka. “They’re just cutting costs out of the business. I believe they’ll still need an agency for strategy,” he says. “Programmatic doesn’t do that for you. Anybody can buy a thousand points. We are advisers: We look at your business holistically, from products being developed through consumer experiences.”

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Nasty, nasty bots that suck up ad dollars while leaving brands with phony stats is probably a huge issue for advertisers. How huge? The ANA’s partnership with White Ops in The Marketers’ Coalition aims to identify the extent of click fraud. During the study, campaigns of participating brands will be tagged to allow White Ops to monitor them for fraud. Are Hispanic campaigns included in the effort? If so why?

Click FraudThe number of brands that are contributing campaigns is up to 34, according to Bill Duggan, ANA Group EVP, and it may get up to 40 before the study begins in August. The organization made a special effort to recruit Hispanic marketers, Duggan says.

“As you know, digital and mobile usage among Hispanics over-indexes versus the general population, so it is very important to have Hispanic representation in this initiative,” Duggan says.

But whose problem is it, really? Shouldn’t it be the responsibility of the ad servers and ad exchanges?.

Hispanic campaigns are being contributed by brands in categories including CPG and spirits. The Hispanic results will be broken out separately and reported upon with comparisons to the general market campaigns. The ANA did not include any other specific demographic targets, because, Duggan says, “It just adds another level of complexity.”

Lee Vann, Captura Group
Lee Vann, Captura Group

Hispanic marketers are already well aware of click fraud, and many of them are resigned to it as a cost of doing business. Says Lee Vann, CEO of Captura Group, ” Overall my sense is that click fraud is a significant problem in the industry that marketers have learned to live with. In a sense, marketers build click fraud into their digital media plans and ensure that the ROI (with click fraud accounted for) is there when purchasing CPC based ads.”

My assumption is that click fraud would not be as prevalent as the sheer volume of Hispanic ads and the relative CPC of such ads tends to be lower than general market.

There’s no indication whether Hispanic campaigns might be more or less prone to click fraud. On the one hand, Vann says, “My assumption is that click fraud would not be as prevalent as the sheer volume of Hispanic ads and the relative CPC of such ads tends to be lower than general market.”

On the other hand, it’s hot market right now, and, as brands move in, so will fraudsters.

In its announcement of the initiative, the ANA referred to “serious breakdowns in the marketing supply chain.” But whose problem is it, really? Shouldn’t it be the responsibility of the ad servers and ad exchanges?

Tim Surowiecki, Horizon Media
Tim Surowiecki, Horizon Media

Yes, it should, according to Tim Surowiecki, VP of digital media search & analytics for Horizon Media. However, in the absence of reliable preventions among ad servers, Horizon is already working with third-party vendors to reduce click fraud. “We don’t put our clients’ dollars into the market without solutions on the technology side to prevent us falling victim to it,” he says. ” Ideally we wouldn’t have to bring in those third parties, but we wouldn’t need those solutions if the ad server/ad exchanges had been keeping up with fraud out there.”

In fact, marketers and agencies are in a technology arms race with the bad guys, according to Carlos Salinas, CEO of Spanish Media Group. “Sadly, it’s not only the good guys who are innovating,” he says, adding that the best hope for reducing click fraud is fraud detection technologies that are as good as the targeting, reporting and optimization tools agencies use. He adds, “This problem is costing real money to brands and digital marketers, so it’s in everyone’s best interest to be genuinely proactive about the issue.”

Carlos Salinas
Carlos Salinas

The fact that there are multiple companies and campaigns in the study could help identify trends and provide insights that could aid the development of anti-fraud tools and best practices, Salinas thinks.

Surowiecki thinks the ANA study will be most helpful on the public relations side, making it “official” that there’s a problem – and he hopes that will get the ad servers to step up. “People in this on a day-to-day basis already know this is reality.”

Says Duggan, ” One reason we are so interested in being involved is we think advertisers need to take a stronger role not only in identifying the issues but also in helping with solutions. The marketer has the most to lose and the most to gain, because it’s their money. We’re involved to elevate the issue with our members and have them be part of the solution.”

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The role of Social Media and Content Marketing efforts can not be emphasized enough when it comes to Hispanic Entertainment Marketing. Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas on how SABMiller, SuperLatina, Comida y Familia, Terra, NewsCred, Taboola and Outbrain are facilitating Hispanic Entertainment experiences.

Gaby Natale, SuperLatina
Gaby Natale, SuperLatina

When Gabriela Natale turned to social media to promote SuperLatina, her cable TV show, she ended up creating a multimedia powerhouse in which social content is almost as important – and as lucrative – as the TV content. SuperLatina launched as a cable TV show in 2007, in an era when Facebook had just opened up to the general public and one-year-old Twitter was still the plaything of geeks.

But by 2010, Natale, who is also co-founder and president of AGANARmedia, a content development and grassroots marketing company with a focus on Hispanic audiences, had turned to Twitter to gain attention for her celebrity interviews. She soon realized that it was an excellent way to extend what she could offer beyond the TV segment format.

“I had limited distribution at the time, so I started sharing videos on YouTube, and now it took on a life of its own,” Natale says. “This is content that people can enjoy whether they can view my show or not.”

For example, in a celebrity interview, her crew may shoot extra footage that she provides on her YouTube channel, letting fans know about it – and comment on it – via Twitter and Facebook. At last year’s Latin Grammies, for which she was L’Oreal Paris’ green-carpet correspondent, her on-air segments featured reportage and interviews with celebs. Meanwhile, she was constantly tweeting about what was happening backstage, what was in the gift bags, how attendees were dealing with the unexpected rain.

“Every time I’m doing a story, I take the pictures for backstage with a professional camera and also take time to take a quick casual picture with a telephone so I can share it immediately,” Natale explains. Social media has helped Natale build her brand. In June, Vme TV, the national Spanish-language television network affiliated with public-TV stations, began carrying “Lo Mejor de SuperLatina,” a show featuring in-depth interviews with Latino celebrities.

“I think one reason SuperLatina is now going to have a national presences is because we delivered results in social media,” Natale says.Social media also has led to sponsorship opportunities on its own. Brands notice when she tweets about them or use their hashtags, she knows. “One tweet sometimes can open more doors than trying to get in contact with the marketing director of a brand.”

Finally, social media provides its own ad and sponsorship opportunities for SuperLatina, which she’s free to sell because it’s produced by her own company. Natale won’t break out what percentage of her revenue comes from each channel, but says, “TV and social media feed each other.”

Terra Juanes

Lifestyle, entertainment and news content is clicky.

Viva la música

In April, Terra Networks achieved a milestone of 1 million streams for its Terra Live Music in Concert presentation featuring Juanes, thanks to a carefully planned and executed social media campaign that began well before the live/digital event that could be consumed on any device.

Terra’s social media marketing of a concert typically has three phases, according to Soizic Sacrez, Terra’s director of marketing. The teaser phase begins approximately one month before the event with an announcement on the Terra site, its Facebook and Twitter feed, as well as on the artist’s social media accounts. In Juanes’ case, announcements went out on Terra’s Spanish and Latin American sites, too

Terra tied in with Universal Music Latin Entertainment to promote Juanes’ latest album, Loco de Amor, along with the concert by facilitating his appearance in the Billboard Digital Superstar Q&A at the Billboard Latin Music Conference.

On the day of the event, “tune in” messaging reaches its peak, and the social media chatter continues during the concert. Sacrez says, “On the day of the concert, we have the artist engaging the audience. We look at what’s trending during the time period.” Because the streams remain available online, Terra continues to promote each concert microsite which includes not only the concert itself but other video, photos, artist interviews and articles.The key to success, she says, is coordination with the artist. “We make sure we have a plan and agree on the posts we’ll do before, during and after.”

Content Marketing

NewsCred sits in a middle position between content creators and content marketers, providing access to curated content and the software that lets brands manage, publish and track it. It contracts with major publishers, as well as freelance content producers, in order to offer licensed content to brands and marketers.

NewsCred recently expanded into Latin America, forging licensing agreements with a variety of LATAM publishers, including AFP Espanol, Huffington Post Voces, EFE. It also has translation rights to English-language sources including Popular Science, the Daily Telegraph and Sauveur.

Pepsi PulseThe South American expansion enabled the company to extend its existing relationship with Pepsi, in which it helped the beverage company to recreate from a corporate-information site into a multimedia consumer portal called Pepsi Pulse. Pepsi Pulse content is now tailored to over 80 local markets, allowing Pepsi to create a global brand campaign on a hyper-local level. The content is heavy on entertainment – sports, movies, pop culture and celebrities.

A month after launch, the revamped site drew 87 percent more unique visitors than the previous month, along with a 2700 percent increase in social referrals.

Kayvan Salmanpour, VP, NewsCred
Kayvan Salmanpour, VP, NewsCred

NewsCred focuses on what Kayvan Salmanpour, NewsCred’s vice president of international, calls “content-driven performance.” He says, “We want to focus on how the content is having an effect on lead generation, driving more leads to the sales team or having effect on tangible retention. On the B2C side, how does it lead to deeper engagement and drive traffic back to our client’s site?”

SAB Miller wanted to create an English-language destination for men aged 25 to 45 and living in Latin America. It partnered with NewsCred to build a nightlife destination filled with entertainment content. Interestingly, NewsCred has found that English-language content has cachet with affluent LATAM consumers.

And, in general with SAB Miller, Salmanpour says, “We’ve noticed that, while there’s a stereotype of what the Hispanic market is looking for, they are just as interested in strong, high-quality content of all kinds as the American market is.”

Ojos para el entretenimiento

While brands need content to entertain consumers, entertainment content publishers need eyeballs, so they contract with “discovery platforms” like Outbrain, Taboola and others, to put links to selected content in front of consumers who are likely to be interested, based on the vendors’ proprietary algorithms. (Earlier this month, Outbrain partnered with NewsCred to bring together content discovery for publishers and content licensing for brands.)

ERik Cima, VP International, Outbrain
Erik Cima, GM LATAM, Outbrain

Outbrain, which partnered with Univision to reach Hispanics in the U.S. in 2012 and is now in 16 markets, including several in LATAM, uses more than 50 algorithms to determine what content to suggest to individual consumers, and these algorithms can be adjusted based on a client’s needs. Erik Cima, general manager for LATAM at Outbrain, says that the company has found that, while consumers everywhere have individual interests, there isn’t a big difference in their behavior from region to region in terms of what he calls “clicky” content.

“Lifestyle, entertainment and news content is clicky,” Cima says. However, publishers in LATAM don’t have a tradition of buying traffic to their sites, so he’s found that encouraging them to take revenue generated from hosting Outbrain’s suggestion widget on their sites and use it to promote their own content elsewhere on the web works well.

When it comes to Outbrain clients like People en Espanol that do buy traffic, it’s because advertiser demand for ads far exceeds their ability to fulfill orders from organic inventory. They turn to Outbrain to draw in enough page views to satisfy their advertiser demand.

Cima says, “We see publishers in Hispanic media that have always-on buys with us because we are scaling traffic at very low prices.”

Wherefore Hispanics?

Adam Singolda, CEO Taboola
Adam Singolda, CEO Taboola

The inventory problem is just as pertinent when it comes to content marketing to U.S. Hispanics, as well: As the English-dominant Hispanic population grows, marketers won’t simply be able to rely on Spanish-language content to reach them, says Adam Singolda, CEO of Taboola. Currently, the content recommendation platform targets its recommendations via countries, DMAs or zip codes, so advertisers like Comida Kraft that want to reach Hispanics use Spanish-language sites in Taboola’s network, including Wonderwall Latino, Variety Latino and Fox Deportes.

Taboola’s roadmap includes enabling clients to target consumers based on what language their browser is set to, for example, so that they can find Hispanic consumers even when they’re on English-language sites. Singolda says, “As the market matures, we’ll see that people who want to grow their Latin American business even faster will need to make content available on English-language sites. It’s more about the person behind the screen instead of what that person is doing right now.”

Get the  HISPANIC CONTENT MARKETING REPORT: Sector to grow to US $3.51 billion by 2018 (Portada Premium Report)

A recap of major news on the marketing and media front from around the web compiled by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.

How Maleficent Got Her Hispanic Groove

Casting a Hispanic star or throwing some Spanglish into the marketing isn’t the only way Hollywood studios can attract Hispanic audiences. Sometimes, tweaking the marketing to appeal to consumer values can do the job. In the case of the Disney film Maleficent, movie marketer Jaime Gamboa of Soda Creative knows that Hispanic families like to go to movies together, so he recut the trailer so that it wouldn’t be so scary for little kids. See the original and recut trailers on The Wrap. It paid off: 25 percent of the opening-week audience was Hispanic.

AT&T Hooks Up with Vice to Reach Hispennials

source: AT&T
source: AT&T

Actually, the mobile carrier is working with Virtue, the more family-friendly-sounding offshoot of edgy Vice Media, for #BetweenTwoWorlds, an advertising and social media campaign to reach acculturated Hispanic Millennials. Latino Post notes that one of the video spots uses Spanglish, the fluid merging of English and Spanish, to illustrate this demo’s “ambicultural” lives. Ads will run in  print (People en Español and Latina Magazine), TV (National Spanish TV in programming targeting Millennials + 5 bilingual networks), digital (Spanish sites targeting Millennials) and social (Spanglish content in Facebook/Twitter/Tumblr, and the campaign uses the hashtag #BetweenTwoWorlds.



Toyota Will Compete Hard for Hispanics
Automakers are racing to attract Hispanic consumers. At the National Council of La Raza on Saturday, Bill Fay, group vice president for U.S. sales, told Bloomberg that Toyota will fight to maintain its lead as the top-selling auto brand among Hispanics. He told Bloomberg, “We’re trying to cover all our bases and reinforce the strength of the product and involvement in the different communities.” He noted that Nissan and Ford are among the brands looking to grab some share.

Dems Dropping Political Ad Dollars
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has begun making TV buys on Spanish-language stations in some key Hispanic markets, according to the Sunlight Foundation. Republicans, not so much. One exception is Texans for Greg Abbot. His Republican gubernatorial campaign has spent more than $180,000 in San Antonio. The hottest market for political ad spending on Spanish-language TV, not surprisingly, is Miami.

Hispanic consumers love music, and they’re more likely than the general U.S. population to use mobile devices. Put those things together and marketers get an emotion-fueled rocket to their hearts and minds. Portada’s Digital Media Correpondent Susan Kuchinskas, on how marketers use music to connect with Hispanic audiences through mobile media.

a stack of colorful guitars

T-Mobile is telling its subscribers that they never have to stop the music. In June, the mobile carrier announced that its Music Freedom initiative, saying that its Simple Choice plan would exempt streaming music from its data allowances. It also partnered with Rhapsody to introduce unRadio, an ad-free music service. The service is free to Simple Choice customers on its newest unlimited data service, and for a discounted price of $4 per month for other customers.

Between one fourth and one third of T-Mobile’s subscribers are Hispanic, according to Gabriel Torres, vice president and general manager for T-Mobile USA’s Southeast region, and, citing the familiar studies showing that Hispanics over-index on mobile and use more data, he says, “There’s a very good story in terms of why this is relevant for the Hispanic market.” Although he couldn’t provide details of how these services might be marketed specifically to Hispanics, he adds, “The fact that we are bringing this incredible music offering helps us bring our community together at the same time.”

Selling spots

Buying digital music requires one foot in both worlds. SBD radio, for example, can sell radio/event/digital packages — but the company maintains separate budgets for each of them. Some agencies buy digital music through their digital teams and terrestrial radio through that dedicated team. It’s a tricky decision: Digital music is measurable, like other digital media, but it also is more audience-based, like traditional radio.

Vilma Vale-Brennan

MEC Bravo doesn’t separate terrestrial radio from web-streams of traditional radio stations from pure-play streaming services. In its work for AT&T, for example, “We see it as a holistic channel and we take a holistic approach,” says Vilma Vale-Brennan, managing partner in MEC Bravo. In the planning stage, this approach entails mixing some oranges with some apples.

The agency’s planners must try to understand the different market penetration of its different distribution partners. The AT&T media plan includes a lot of pure-play streaming providers, especially Pandora and iHeartRadio. The media team uses the services’ data to understand the penetration of Hispanic consumers, and then adds up the ratings on terrestrial radio in order come up with an estimated reach on all devices for a particular campaign.

“Combining those two is where the art comes in,” she says.

Station masters

Branded stations are a favored way for companies to reach consumers on streaming media services without interrupting their listening with commercials – and, of course, uninterrupted music is a prime selling point to get listeners to the brand’s station.

Another advantage is that, on branded streaming stations, the brand can at least to some extent own some real estate on the device screen; placements might include a banner at the top of the interface or a skin of the entire interface. Sometimes, the deals include sponsorships of live events, as well.

At this year’s Billboard Latin Music Conference and Awards in Miami, the Pandora Discovery Den Noche de Música Latina was sponsored by State Farm, P&G’s Orgullosa and Sprint. In addition to sponsoring live music performances, the brands offered special activities, gifts and presentations. They brands also used Pandora’s Mixtapes solution to create special stations with branded banners.

Another reason that branded music stations are so compelling to advertisers is that they offer an extended period of time in which a brand, through curation of the music, can evoke emotion in the listener – emotion that can be transferred to the brand itself.

Natalia Borges
Natalia Borges

“Music connects at an emotional level,” says Natalia Borges, vice president of marketing for Batanga Media. Custom stations are “a way we can feature music that speaks to the essence of the brand.” For example, Batanga worked with its editors to create a station to help Latina moms get their babies settled into bed at night. Setting this sweet moment to music not only helped the moms accomplish a crucial nightly task, the music itself also created sweet associations with the Huggies brand, with its own brand essence of sweet.

For Corona Extra’s Fill Your Summer 2014 campaign, Batanga created a station designed to evoke the fun and excitement of summer. Promotion for Batanga custom stations may include home page placement, placement on “hot radios” or “top stations” lists and, depending on the campaign targeting listeners via audio, video or display ads on Batanga’s mobile app.

Close to 90 percent of all music streams from Batanga take place via its mobile app, according to Borges, and clickthrough rates from mobiles, as well as engagement rates, are consistently higher on mobile – as much as 68 percent higher. “Video in any environment performs very well,” Borges says, and so do high-impact units such as interactive ads or full-page ads.

A campaign for McDonalds last year used the interactivity available in mobile ad units to good effect. The brand collaborated with Batanga to create a customized music awards on the platform that let consumers vote for their favorite artists across a variety of genres. A twist added by Batanga was creating the genres based on its own audience data instead of using standard genres. Fans could vote from within the ad unit, so that they did not have to pause their music listening.

MEC Bravo wants to create its own custom station ad unit that it could distribute to different steaming music services, although there are still details, both technical and business, to work out. The music in the channel could be tightly targeted to consumers and, ideally, be highly attractive to the target market. Ads could be included in the channel, so that they’d be native to the user experience, according to Vale-Brennan. This could turn out to be, MEC Bravo hopes, “a seamless, integrated way of capturing their attention in an organic way.”

Genre targeting

Spanish Broadcasting System (SBS) relies on its mobile app, La Musica, to power streaming services from the 20 U.S. terrestrial radio stations it operates. This combination of terrestrial radio, station websites and mobile app lets the company offer cross-platform campaigns, although the company maintains separate budgets for different channels, according to Max Ramirez, vice president of digital media for SBS Interactive, the company’s digital arm.

Max Ramirez
Max Ramirez

“We have a better opportunity to leverage relationships [with advertisers], and we can tie in digital with whatever they have going on. Maybe they buy a concert that includes radio but also some digital elements,” Ramirez says.

La Musica is used to run national digital campaigns and local advertising, and it also frequently carries custom stations for brands; a Dunkin Donuts-branded station within the app is just about to launch. Clients can select the type of music to be played according to artists, genres or DJs. The music streams ad-free and the advertiser gets a custom tab on the app that can lead to interactive functions.

For Vida Lexus, the automaker’s Hispanic-oriented lifestyle portal, the sponsored tab included a dealer locator with click-to-call. The stations can also run display ads, as well as one-click connections to the brand’s Facebook page and Twitter feed.

SBS Lexus channelMost mobile music services can’t yet target consumers according to their interests or even registration information. But the importance of musical genre for targeting should not be overlooked. In the case of SBS, its various stations draw in different segments of Hispanic consumers. For example, in Los Angeles, La Raza 97.9 attracts more Spanish-dominant listeners, while Mega 96.3 has a more bilingual listener base. Says Ramirez of the latter listeners, “They’re English-first, but still consuming Latino culture.” And the key to reaching the diverse Hispanic audience, he says, is, “It needs to be in-culture, which is more important that in-Spanish or in-English.”

Indeed, with the wide variety of acculturation levels and language preferences in this market, finding the right messaging and language can be tricky.

“Across acculturation levels, music preferences change,” points out Maria Lopez-Knowles, CMO of Pulpo Media (recently acquired by Entravision). She notes that Pandora is most popular among English-dominant Hispanics. According to Pulpo’s analysis, it’s these bilingual, bicultural, English-dominant Hispanics that are driving mobile adoption and penetration. Their hybridity is reflected in the fact that they listen to English and Spanish music.

Maria Lopez-Knowles
Maria Lopez-Knowles

Even the most acculturated Hispanics still love Latin music, according to Lopez-Knowles, as well as American pop. She likes to say that, to reach these influencers, you should “speak to them in English, but wink at them in Spanish.” That goes for music selections, as well. When creating custom radio stations, she says, go for Spanglish.

A recap of major news on the Marketing and Media front from around the web compiled by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.

Felipe Esparza is “un Buen Fit” for Honda Fit

Esparza for Honda Fit Photo:
Esparza for Honda Fit

Combine two of the most desirable and least-understood consumer segments – Hispanics and Millennials – and you get Hispennials, a target market everyone wants to hit. Honda has a big Latino campaign for its little 2015 Fit, using the bulky comedian Felipe Esparza  (photo) hype its many features to Hispennials. The TV spot, via Honda’s Hispanic agency Orcí, includes digital, experiential and social media components, according to Mediapost, based on the hashtag #UnBuenFit. Andrew Orcí, the agency’s CEO, says it’s the first fully integrated, bilingual campaign that Honda has done.

Latinas Lead Hispanic PR Push
Havas PR launched a multicultural practice that will focus on gaining earned media and social buzz within the Hispanic community. Havas Conexiones is led by by five Latinas with Argentinean, Cuban, El Salvadoran, Mexican and Puerto Rican backgrounds, stationed in Hispanic hot spots around the country, including New York, California and Texas. Havas Conexiones has released a report called Mi Casa en Los Estados Unidos: Millennials of the Border States. Among the findings is that 61 percent of the Hispennials surveyed said speaking Spanish was an important part of their lives.

Is “White” a Useless Demographic?
The New York Times followed up its June article on identity fragmentation among Hispanics trying to answer census questions with another piece that discusses the complexities of Hispanic racial and ethnic identity and points out that Hispanics aren’t alone in grappling with this conundrum: Many Arab-Americans don’t consider themselves white. What the NYT makes clear is that the concept of white as a race seems to be defined merely by the absence of any stronger ethnic identity. It concludes by quoting Kenneth Prewitt, a professor of public affairs at Columbia University and the author of “What Is Your Race? The Census and Our Flawed Efforts to Classify Americans,” who seems to think that race is an outmoded concept altogether.

Latinum Network Adds CPG Expertise
The brand advisory service appointed Graciela Eleta as senior strategic advisor. Eleta, formerly SVP of Univision Communications’ Strategy & Insights Team, also gained experience in consumer packaged goods, retail, over-the-counter health products and beverages when she served as vice president of Procter & Gamble’s Multicultural Division. Latinum Network is a member-based brand advisory network that provides proprietary research, a bilingual consumer community and a mobile platform.

First Original Spanish Netflix Production
NetflixNetflix will spice up its existing menu of Spanish-language content with what is likely the first original Spanish series produced by an over-the-top video service. According to Variety, the still-unnamed, 13-episode series produced by Alazraki Entertainment centers around a family feud among a family that owns a soccer club. The show will be shot in Mexico with a Latin American cast. The series is a smart move for Netflix as it continues its international expansion, but it will compete for eyeballs with ad-sponsored video and TV programming.

Join us at PORTADA Mexico!

A recap of major news on the Marketing and Media front from around the web compiled by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.

heineken uefaHeineken Takes a Replay for UEFA Campaign

The beer brand was late to the party, but its first-ever Hispanic TV campaign on Fox Deportes scored so well that it’s signed on again for the 2015 season. The 2014 campaign included commercials and bumpers on-air during games, plus placement on the Fox Deportes website. Heineken and Fox used Twitter Amplify to promote #sharethesofa, an initiative that let soccer fans interact with players in real time. A contest promo on Foursquare asked fans to link their accounts to Heineken in order to win prizes and a trip to Europe for live games. Results were record-breaking, according to Multichannel News.

Corona Extra Doesn’t Need Extra Hispanic Campaign

Maybe because the Latin angle is baked into its brand, Corona Extra will use the same creative approach for Hispanic and general-market campaigns this summer. Two ads, created by Cramer-Krasselt and La Comunidad, will run on TV and digital channels. La Comunidad spot’s includes both an English- and Spanish-language version.

John Alvarado, vice president of marketing for Constellation Brands’ beer division, told Adweek that multicultural millennnias perceive Corona as a multicultural brand, anyway.

Multi-media Millennials

Maybe Alvarado read this article from Latin Post rounding up recent research from several sources showing that Latino millennials are mobile-happy and also happy to receive media content in Spanish and English. A followup article notes that a whopping 90 percent of young Latinos use mobile banking.

TN-255989_LaChingona_uncensoredThat’s a Spicy Pizza

Pizza Patrón’s Latin-inflected La Ch!#gona pizza was its most successful limited-time-offer offering in the chain’s history. Was it the chilis or the social media campaign? When radio stations refused to air spots using the C-word, Patrón took to Twitter to complain it was being censored for “speaking Mexican Spanish.” The result was not only más pizza sales, but also a U.S. Hispanic Idea Award.


Univision's Metastasis comes to Hulu Latino
Univision’s Metastasis comes to Hulu Latino

On fire after a successful Upfront, Hulu Latino says it will offer close to three times the volume of content it had available in 2013, thanks to its highly successful original series “East Los High,” plus content from more than 70 partners.

Hulu Latino now reaches more than 1 million unique Hispanic viewers a month, and consumption has continued double-digit, month-over-month growth since the channel’s inception two and a half years ago, according to Rodrigo Mazon, content acquisition director for Hulu.

The growth has a lot to do with awareness, Mazon says. “There’s still, from my perspective, an enormous opportunity and room to grow.” He thinks that, despite being more connected, more mobile and more social, “There are still lots of viewers connected to traditional ways of watching television.” He thinks that as these viewers get used to watching online, on-demand and using digital to catch up on shows they missed, Hulu Latino’s numbers will grow even more.

There are still lots of viewers connected to traditional ways of watching television.

Hulu Latino aims to fuel that growth with two new shows in its Hulu Originals portfolio, as well as the return of its mucho successful “East Los High.”

Cast of Mi Vida en Sayulita hits the beach
Cast of Mi Vida en Sayulita hits the beach

“Mi Vida en Sayulita” is a reality-like show that follows seven teenagers during spring break in the Mexican beach town of Sayulita. The 17 30-minute episodes, in Spanish, are exclusive to Hulu Latino. Another new original show, “Los Cowboys,” is a “docu-soap” that takes place in the milieu of an L.A.-based competitive Mexican rodeo team known as Charros.

East Los High,” a series produced and financed by the nonprofit Population Media Center and distributed by Hulu, will return for 12 more episodes, backed again by a heavy transmedia offering produced by The Alchemists that encompasses websites, blogs, social media and mobile offerings that give the characters and storylines a presence beyond the episode content.

Providing a balance of English- and Spanish-language content is crucial, Mazon says, because the audience is definitely bilingual. “Virtually all of our Latino viewers not only consume a wide variety of this Latino content on Hulu, they are consuming just as much English language general-market content. They are proving our hypothesis, which is that what’s great about the platform is you can watch the best of Latino content as easily as the best of general-market content and figure out what’s best for you.”

And there’s more from content partners. For example, a new partnership with MundoFOX makes Hulu Latino the first non-linear distribution partner for its series, including “El Capo” and “El Mariachi.”

Streaming Univision Content

The service will continue to stream Univision’s reality series/beauty pageant “Nuestra Belleza Latina,” and it will feature the new Univision series “Metástasis,” the Spanish-language production of “Breaking Bad,” this time taking place in the Colombian mountains. “Los Héroes del Norte,” a scripted reality series chronicling the travails of a fictional Mexican Regional band, rounds out the Univision offerings.


Rodrigo Mazon
Rodrigo Mazon
The Latino audience on Huly is approximately 40 percent more likely to consume on video on mobile, confirming reports by audience analytics providers.

Mazon notes that the Latino audience on Hulu is approximately 40 percent more likely to consume on video on mobile, confirming reports by audience analytics providers. But Mazon thinks it’s most important to create high-quality shows without worrying about how they’ll translate to smaller screens. Noting that there’s still plenty of living-room consumption of Hulu content, he says, “The audience, just like any other audience, is most focused and attracted to high-quality content that appeal to them. We’ve found that people will switch between devices just because that’s where they are [in the programming] at that point in time.”

However, much of the transmedia content for “East Los High” is easier to consume on mobile devices.

East Los High already had deep integration of sponsor Population Media Center and the organizations that contributed, including Planned Parenthood: The plot itself revolves around messages about avoiding teen pregnancy and practicing safe sex. For season two, Mazon says, there will be consumer brand integrations in the show itself and in the transmedia components, although he couldn’t divulge any specifics.

All video content on Hulu runs pre-roll and interstitial ads, while longer transmedia videos might include either a slate ad or a pre-roll. “Transmedia also lends itself to sponsorship,” Mazon says, “but the key is, we want the transmedia content to have same look, feel and quality as the show itself.”

A recap of major news on the Marketing and Media front from around the web compiled by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinskas.


Hyundai and Volkswagen Target Hispanics during FIFA World Cup

There’s more evidence that marketers are waking up to the economic and social power of Hispanic consumers, with car companies making plays at FIFA World Cup starting tonight in Brazil. Meanwhile, is the whole Hispanic thing in danger of fading away? Both global automakers plan advertising blitzes during the FIFA World Cup, according to Automotive News. VW will run commercials in English and Spanish on ESPN and Univision, while Hyundai has made its largest-ever Spanish-language TV buy to reach young Hispanic males, while promoting the hashtag #BecauseFutbol. In the U.S., football may be bigger than futbol, but the month-long World Cup actually garners Super Bowl-sized audiences over its entire run. And Hispanics spent $39 billion on new-car purchases last year.

T-Mobile to Put Univision in Your Pocket

Can you say “captive audience?” Univision and T-Mobile made a bold play to keep Hispanics in their pockets — or, really, it’s the other way around. Univision Mobile is a wireless service that will offer subscribers a mobile portal into content, including special exclusive offerings. Subscribers also get 100 minutes of calls to Latin America. They specifically target Hispanic customers with families overseas, and all include 100 minutes to call a mobile or landline number from the US to Mexico and Latin America. It’s a win for consumers with family or friends south of the border, and the phone and service are one non-stop ad for Univision.

Hollywood Hunting Hispanics

That’s per a panel of movie industry execs appearing as part of the Produced By conference in Los Angeles last week. The head of the National Association of Theater Owners said Hispanics are their most important consumer, and Univision’s Peter Filaci backed that up by saying that Hispanics represent 17.5 percent of the population, but contribute 19 percent of U.S. box office revenue.

And that’s with a dearth of movies featuring Hispanics. Think how much money they could make with a few casting tweaks. Said writer Gwynne Watkins, “Hispanic audiences have turned out en masse for movies that feature the rare Latino star or director. If the movies started to better reflect their audience, just imagine the possibilities.”

Are Hispanics Fading Away?

A flurry of soul-searching began last week after a study showed that 10 million Americans changed their race on U.S. Census forms between 2000 and 2010. The largest number of those who changed their race/ethnicity category were 2.5 million Americans who said they were Hispanic and “some other race” in 2000, but a decade later, told the census they were Hispanic and white — although they were balanced somewhat by 1.3 million others who hopped onto the Hispanic bandwagon. So … why?

A major factor is the pressure — and the growing opportunity — to blend into society and to identify with the majority, writes Mary Sanchez in the Kansas City Star. Click through to read her thoughtful analysis of race and ethnicity in America.

But Nate Cohn at the New York Times notes that this could be not so much an identity crisis as simply the result of a change in wording on census forms.

At least one thing is clear, at least: Folks in the U.S. prefer “Hispanic” to “Latino.” All this matters — a lot — to anyone trying to get a message to this desirable demo.


Dunk On

Last week, Dunkin Donuts launched a new Twitter handle, @DunkinLatino. According to Latin Times, the franchise will do more than just pump out promos in Spanish; it may create new flavors that are “on trend in the Hispanic community.” Dulce!

A recap of major news on the Marketing and Media front from around the web compiled  by Portada Digital Media Correspondent Susan Kuchinkas.

Upfronts in a Time of Overwhelming Supply

The combination of online video and the ability to target audiences there may profoundly change the TV upfront process, according to industry execs. While super-premium TV, especially live event coverage, may still require buying upfront, many see most buying moving to programmatic, real-time markets. Mediapost got predictions from Magna Global, GroupM and others. Read more.

Tweets Target Languages

Twitter enabled language-targeting for promoted tweets and promoted accounts, so that marketers can reach consumers in their preferred languages. Someone might see promoted tweets in multiple languages if his or her Twitter activity shows more than one language, according to ClickZ. Read more.

Merger of Ad Giants Falters

Major schadenfreude last week, as the Omnicom/Publicis merger failed to launch. The two advertising behemoths had said that combining forces would allow them to be more competitive in the changing tech landscape. While the companies’ CEOs had agreed to act as co-CEOs for close to three years, a power struggle to appoint other C-level executives may have torpedoed the deal. Reuters got some candid quotes from both sides. Read more.

Who the Heck Is Hispanic?

Does it make sense to maintain the distinction between mainstream and multiculti agencies in an America that’s increasingly multicultural? That was the hot topic at the AHAA: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing conference, AdAge says. The debate is similar to that which took place in the early days of digital, when traditional and digital agencies jostled for the lead, while clients sometimes acted like bewildered traffic cops. What’s the answer? It still depends on who you ask. You can download the AHAA Total Market Benchmark Study Advertisers Preliminary Findings from the AHAA website.  Read more.

Occupy Digital Advertising

The growing wealth from online advertising is unequally distributed, with the bulk of ad dollars flowing to rich companies, while news publishers go hungry, a new report says. Digital advertising grew 16 percent in 2013, but news organizations are fighting for a smaller piece of the pie. Who’s getting fat? Well, Google, duh — and all its ilk. Pew Research says, “Big tech companies that largely aren’t in the business of creating news content continue to dominate the digital ad space, often because they are able to reach much larger audiences than news organizations can.” In fact, half of all digital ad dollars go to just five companies. Read more.

Pulpo Media Seeks Missing Hispanics

Pulpo Media unveiled a new data-driven platform it says will help marketers reach hidden Hispanic segments, especially acculturated ones. For example, the agency identified what it calls the 1.5 generation, that is, adults who may technically be foreign-born or first-generation, but were mostly educated in the United States. Although they make up 35 percent of the first-generation immigrant population in America, Pulpo says they have not been taken into consideration in previous data models. That’s just one of the segments the Hispanic Acculturation Model aims to help advertisers reach. Read more.

Apple and Comcast are rumored to be cutting a deal that would send a mix of live TV and on-demand video through an Apple set-top box. That’s just the latest in a series of partnerships or acquisitions that could someday let advertisers buy, traffic and analyze online video and TV content together. A look at how agencies and digital vendores are preparing for the TV-Video Convergence.

Nielsen is partnering with Videology to use data to help TV advertisers target young audiences that are watching more digital channels. Comcast bought FreeWheel. And, owned by AOL, launched a programmatic TV buying platform, which it says lets advertisers use data to buy the same audiences online and on TV.

This is clearly the path we’re heading down: to make video buying more seamless, efficient, and data-driven
MarlaSkiko, SMG Multicultural
MarlaSkiko, SMG Multicultural

“This is clearly the path we’re heading down: to make video buying more seamless, efficient, and data-driven. It’s all video buying. We want to use data to inform buying video wherever we’re buying it,” says Marla Skiko, EVP and director of digital innovation for SMG Multicultural.

How close are we to true convergence of the buying process? Not all that close: These deals are about helping TV content owners target ads in the digital world. There is technology and business challenges to work through for brands, agencies, content creators and vendors alike before digital and TV will become apples and apples.

Could DSPs buy TV spots?

SMG, part of the Publicis Group, has access to sister agency VivaKi’s Audience on Demand platform. Skiko says, “They are running hard against trying to buy TV on the platform. It started with display and then folded in social.” She thinks that eventually, anything that can be bought programmatically will be –including TV.

She says that tools like comScore validated Campaign Essentials and Nielsen Campaign Rating already let advertisers talk about online video and TV in the same way, albeit through the TV focus. When placing a GRP focus on digital video, she says, “If you want to buy Hispanic 18 to 49, let’s look at what you actually got of that demographic that you were trying to reach. All of it is still bought on the CPM basis, its’ the nature of talking about the reach and frequency dynamic.”

One of the common criticisms of Nielsen’s and comScore’s audience tools, she adds is, “It’s awesome in the verification but not in the planning phase.” DSPs still need to use their own data together with third-party sources to plan campaigns.

Some agencies — including SMG Multicultural — already are converging their TV and digital video teams for planning and buying.

Business roadblocks

Mark Dominiak, PACO
Mark Dominiak, PACO

Some agencies — including SMG Multicultural — already are converging their TV and digital video teams for planning and buying. Sometimes, this is easier for smaller agencies. Says Mark Dominiak, media strategist PACO, a multicultural agency that handles digital, TV and social media, “At our agency, it’s small enough to where we don’t have the luxury of a department. We have a small group of people who serve all the media goals of the agency. When you have people who are working on all facets, it works to your advantage. There’s no siloing.”

Analytics — the lack of common metrics between broadcast and digital channels — could be the biggest barrier to converged buying. Says Jeremy Helfand, vice president of video monetization at Adobe, “What is the common currency I can transact across all channels? A lot of our customers are using Adobe Analytics to understand the, digital audience but ultimately market needs to go to a true cross-platform currency to allow dollars to flow freely across wherever the audiences are. The consumers are not different between the TV screen and the screen in their hands, so how can we truly monetize that experience across those various channels in an easier way?”

Adobe recently introduced a major upgrade to Adobe Marketing Cloud that converges six products, including Adobe Analytics. Adobe Primetime, the sell-side platform that lets broadcasters package TV content for digital distribution, can take advantage of customer data in the analytics product to target advertising delivered with video content via Primetime. But there’s no way within the product suite to combine this with GRP data from Nielsen. Ashley Still, director of product management for Primetime, says companies could “try” to do this internally.

An agency like us, we almost never talk about how many rating points you are delivering. It’s about, how well does the buy you manufactured serve your marketing objective?

It might behoove agencies to focus less on trying to match gross rating points to CPMs, anyway. Says Dominiak, “An agency like us, we almost never talk about how many rating points you are delivering. It’s about, how well does the buy you manufactured serve your marketing objective? GRPs and impressions are an output you look at but are not critical to deciding if this is a good plan.”

Beyond the data plays of Adobe, Comcast and others lies a deeper question for Hispanic marketers, Skiko says. “Our ideal goal would be to rely on first-party data as much as possible.” That could be derived from a tracked visit to a Spanish-language website, search in Spanish or from a data partner. However, she says, “We need more at scale. Creating pools of first-party data is helpful to enable some of these platforms. When Nielsen or AOL makes an announcement, one of the first questions we want to ask is, ‘Have you thought about how to enable this for multicultural audiences?”

In other words, while the convergence of TV and digital ads is a blip on the horizon, Hispanic marketers have an even longer journey to get there.

No pricing convergence

Photo: James CridlandEven if the metrics and analytics problems get worked out, no one sees the prices of video ads and TV spots converging. But that does not mean that online video will be cheaper than broadcast. Already, we’re seeing some high-value online video reaping higher rates than TV scatter ads — although it’s hard to compare due to the different pricing and metrics.

Increasingly, broadcasters are selling digital as part of their upfronts. For example, NBC offered a huge digital component for the Sochi Olympics, with a website and three different apps that offered a mix of live streaming of TV, video clips, news and custom content.

According to Julie De Traglia, SVP, digital and broadcast marketing research for NBCUniversal, Sochi Olympics broadcast and video ads were sold as a package, and this will be increasingly the case for premium content that’s delivered across channels. “Advertisers buy multiplatform,” she says.

This kind of packaging, to some extent, obviates the need for convergence of TV and video within DSPs and analytics programs — especially while the demand for premium video outstrips the supply, especially in the Hispanic market. Adds Skiko, “Some video may be on parity with television, depends on how the deal is made. And there shouldn’t be a distinction. We have video buyers and we are about to enter another video upfront. You won’t talk about the TV Upfronts anymore.”

National Public Radio is on a hunt for Hispanics. Also for millennials, multicultural programming, and a wider view of America that includes the entire continent. It thinks its mobile app may be the way to get there. How radio stations use apps to increase engagement, appeal to new listeners and grow their revenue .

Photo: Sean Mac Entee. Licence CC.
Photo: Sean Mac Entee. Licence CC.

A $17 million grant to NPR charged the national broadcaster with going deeper and broader in its coverage of education, global health and development, and race, ethnicity and culture. As part of this initiative, the public radio station has added more news programs, extending its news cycle to 10 p.m.

With so much programming, says NPR director of mobile Demian Perry, it can be difficult for listeners to catch their favorite programs.
Photo: NPR/Doby Photography
Photo: NPR/Doby Photography

“If we’re programming 17 hours of segmented news content every day, the chances of, for example, our Hispanic audience hearing Hispanic-targeted content is very slim,” Perry says. While the station has experimented with creating program-centric apps, it can be difficult to gain scale. So NPR is pinning its hopes on Infinite Player, the working name of a work-in-progress available online and for iOS devices that will not only let users personalize it, but also will recommend content based on individuals’ behavior and interests. “We want to fill in all the time you want to listen with all the content you’re interested in,” he says.

Reaching the mobile-only listener

Photo: Alan Klim. Licence CC.
Photo: Alan Klim. Licence CC.

There’s another simple reason radio stations are creating apps: An increasing number of people are mobile-only.

Fifteen-year-old Batanga Media was one of the first stations to offer a mobile version of its programming, back in 2010. That initial foray into mobile let users listen to their favorite radio stations, personalize those, or build new ones.

“The availability of the app has introduced Batanga Radio to an entirely new audience of listeners who discovered us on mobile devices,” says Natalia Borges, vice president of marketing for Batanga. Of course, Hispanics are more likely to use mobile devices than the general population anyway. But its radio app let Batanga connect with people who had never listened online at all. “We had our loyal audience, but app has allowed us to grow our audience in ways we weren’t able to do before. There’s this huge audience who had never discovered us online who are discovering us on mobile now,” she says.

Four years later, consumers spend around 50 minutes per listening session, and interactions with the app are some 10 or 11 times higher than when it was launched.

Those interactions include liking and unliking individual cuts and discovering new music via search or suggestions from the service.

Batanga releases a new version once or twice a year, making changes in response to user behavior. Borges says that personalization has become more important, so the company has added tools for personalization and discovery, with less of an emphasis on providing pre-defined “stations” — although Batanga still has plenty of those.

Visual ad units

Univision recently released a new version of its three-year-old radio app, Uforia 4.0. The app offers more multimedia in the form of videos, slideshows and articles. And, of course, with displays come display ads. Univision did not say whether it would include new display ad units, but Batanga definitely is working to innovate here.

“Advertisers have taken traditional radio units and incorporated them within apps. It provides advertisers with two ways to reach consumers within their streams”, says Borges of Batanga

The difference between terrestrial radio and the mobile radio app is that, not only can we run audio units, we can run video as well.

Batanga allows advertisers to target ads based on a combination of musical tastes and registration data. One recent campaign example was a bracket-style awards platform that allowed users to chose the top artists in each of eight Latin music categories. The program was created to run within the Batanga Radio app and allowed users to participate and vote while listening to their favorite music. The program received thousands of entries just in the first two weeks it was live.

Soon, Batanga will release a new display unit that will be unique to Batanga Radio that will allow brands to, as she says, “Skin the experience and own the screen.”

NPR offers “underwriting opportunities” rather than ads, but it, too, is working to develop new ways that sponsors can get their messages to listeners. NPR doesn’t want to go the display route, according to Perry. “We’re interested in ways people can engage with a message without looking or touching the device,” he says. Perry wouldn’t go into detail, but acknowledged that using the mobile device’s voice recognition software to do some kind of voice response is “one of the things on the table.”

No info bubble

As a news organization with a mission to reach the diverse audiences of the United States, NPR has an additional challenge as it develops its mobile app: how to make sure listeners don’t end up in a news bubble of their own creation. While it might be fine for someone to only listen to one Latin genre of music, Perry says, “There are the types of stories everyone needs to hear about and understand to be part of the community of understanding. There are also stories that have niche interest, and we need to find a way to surface them to the people that have that interest.”

That niche content could also make it easier for advertisers to reach Hispanics. While Perry doesn’t deal with ad sales, he says, “We are under pretty strong direction in the product department to build opportunities like that. If a sponsor wants to reach out to a specific segment, we need to make sure we have very targeted inventory and can reach them in a way that’s going to pay off.”

Agencies are paying attention to internet radio services, thanks to the move to mobile and the demand for consumer choice. Research firm eMarketer estimates there will be 159.8 million digital radio listeners in 2014, and that figure will grow to 183.4 million in 2018. That doesn’t mean, however, that they’ll grab ad dollars away from terrestrial radio. Rather, digital listening in all its permutations will become part of the multi-channel and multi-media marketing mix. How to do a multiplatform (Hispanic Audio Buy).

Digital RadioInternet radio, aka streaming audio aka digital radio, comprises digital-native services, as opposed to the digital offerings of terrestrial radio stations. As such, they’re true hybrids, marrying audio with the tools for delivering, tracking and analyzing consumption.

Putting together an audio campaign is a collaboration between digital and audio planning teams.

Most have similar ad models: audio pre-rolls, display ads on the interface, branded custom stations and playlists. And they’re eager to work with agencies to develop custom programs, according to Mina Kamarasheva, associate managing director, audio and promotions, for Horizon Media.

“They understand this is the future and are now beginning to offer custom promotion opportunities. For Pandora, that’s limited to national campaigns versus local. But this is an area they see tremendous growth to come,” Kamarasheva says.

Stacking up the stations

radioNielsen’s purchase of Arbitron last year is expected to lead to industry-standard audience measurement of audio content, letting internet radio stack up, apples-to-apples, against terrestrial radio. Until that day comes, media buyers must rely on the services’ own audience reports delivered via press release or SEC filing. Pandora is the top service, in terms of audience and brand — and the only one that responded to requests for comment.

  • Pandora: 73.4 million active users
  • iHeartRadio: 40+ million registered users
  • TuneIn Radio: 40+ million active users
  • Spotify: 6+ million paying users; 24 million active users

Getting the Hispanic ear

Reaching Hispanic consumers means being as device-agnostic as possible, and this is an area where Kamarasheva gives Pandora high marks. “Pandora has invested in proprietary cross-platform targeting using psychographics and behavioral attributes, in addition to registration data. That means we are following our target demographic online regardless of what they are listening to,” she says.

Pandora likes to start an advertiser relationship by identifying the target audience. “From there, we can provide counsel on both their media buy and the creative solutions that will reach their target audiences,” says Mike Reid, executive director of multicultural sales at Pandora.

In fact, according to Reid, Pandora now offers more than 100 targeting points. “In the case of Hispanic targeting, we have been able to build even more robust models, based on registration information and public sources, which also help us tie music preferences to our Hispanic audience.” This also lets the service reach Hispanics regardless of their musical taste. Pandora estimates that one out of four Hispanics in the United States listens to it.

“Looking back on my previous experience in the Hispanic media business, advertisers traditionally had to go to Spanish radio to reach Hispanics or try radio stations with a Hispanic leaning. With Pandora, advertisers can reach Hispanics more directly through our targeting capabilities,” Reid says.

One campaign for T-Mobile used Pandora Premieres, which provides an exclusive pre-release of a new album every week. In June 2013, the sixth Premieres featured “Vives En Mi,” by La Maquinaria Nortena, an emerging banda/chichuaha group from Mexico. Mexican electronics manufacturer Famsa recently joined the roster of national and local brands working with Pandora to target Hispanics.

Horizon’s Kamarasheva says the ability to create custom stations or sponsor categories or genres is important. “It presents a unique opportunity to customize an audio campaign. You can’t do that with terrestrial radio.”

Complex buy

Buying streaming audio is a bit more complex than buying digital or radio, simply because it’s a bit of both, and also because of the ability to add display or branding to the interfaces. Horizon has merged the buying of every kind of audio ad, including terrestrial and internet radio. Says Kamarasheva, “We believe the way consumers consume audio these days is across multiple platforms. Therefore, putting together our campaigns is collaboration between digital and audio planning teams.”

“We purchase these platforms similar to the way we evaluate other digital properties, but there are some differences,” says Jamie Snider, associate director of digital media at Lowe Campbell Ewald. “Of course, we want to make certain that they deliver the audiences most important to us, both in total and within key geographic markets, and we must make certain that consumers are engaging with the brand.”

Lowe Campbell Ewald has run a number of successful Hispanic campaigns on internet radio, including work for Kaiser Permanente. The agency likes to incorporate video as well as audio advertising, either as pre-rolls or combined with custom stations. Video ads usually run automatically when a listener changes stations — and all creative is optimized for both Android and iOS devices.

Agencies can take advantage of robust tracking and analytics provided by each station. Again, they need to take a hybrid approach, says Snider, looking not only at clicks but also the number of station downloads and the number of minutes listened.

Future of radio

Alain Levine - CC
Alain Levine – CC

Late last year, Clear Channel bought iHeartRadio, which lets people listen to live radio or custom stations, or create their own, offers pre-roll ads, as well as the ability to create branded custom stations. Horizon recently inked a partnership deal with Clear Channel that includes some customized shows at iHeartRadio Theaters in New York and Los Angeles. The national media owner and the agency also plan to fuse their research: The two companies believe that Horizon’s proprietary audience research and analytics tools combined with Clear Channel Media’s music and consumer research can help them develop new models for media.

This kind of consolidation could be in the future for most or all internet radio stations. Having an owner with deep pockets, wide audiences and integrated advertising capabilities could let streaming music services thrive, while traditional media companies expanded their reach even more. There’d be a bit of irony to the digital natives being gobbled up by old-timers but also a lot of sense — and possibly a lot of cents.

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