Analysis: Will Marketer owned Media stretch Consumer Trust to a Breaking Point?

soga- Creative Commons 1It is a first. The winner of the 2014 Portada Top Content Provider to Hispanic Audiences Award went to Kellogg’s Dias Grandiosos digital platform. For the first time in its 7 year history, see box below,  the Award goes to a company that is not a traditional media company but to a company whose main business lies in the production and marketing of cereals and convenience foods.

Winner  of Top Content Provider to Hispanic Audiences Award

2008 Sección Amarilla
2009 TuTecnologia
2012 Telemundo Media
2013 Mamas Latinas’ QueMas
2014 Kellogg’s Dias Grandiosos

That Portada’s audience of thousands of marketing, media and advertising executives voted for the Kellogg’s Dias Grandiosos nomination  -as well as for nominees in 9 other categories  reflects the ascent of Corporate owned Media  not just in Hispanic Marketing but in the life of every consumer.  Practically every Fortune 1,000 company now has a content marketing strategy in place where its own media plays a strong role. As they have for a long time, major marketers continue to work with the POEM model: Paid, Owned and Earned Media. However “Owned” and “Earned” have  been lately growing  at the expense of Paid Media (Traditional Advertising).

For traditional media properties, especially when they are supported by consumers who pay for a subscription, truthfulness and accuracy in reporting lies at the very core of their content strategy.  Can the same be said about media properties owned by a major CPG or automotive company, whose ultimate goal is to “sell product”?  The majority of large  companies in the Hispanic market have their own media properties (e.g. Kellogg’s Dias Grandiosos, P&G’s Orgulllosa or General Mills Que Rica Vida).

Corporations and agencies are redefining the journalistic practice and hiring many journalists. But will a marketer, whose ultimate goal is to push product, produce credible content like traditionl media properties have done for decades?

Removed Boundaries

Top Hispanic Content Provider
Christopher Rivera, Associate Director,Multicultural at Kellogg Company and Lee Vann, CEO, Captura Group receiving the Award at #Portada14

It is through the Owned Media component where the traditional boundaries between Editorial and Advertising get blurred; in fact, removed. The key question lies on whether the trust of audiences in mass media, and the advertising ecosystem that supports it, will be broken by the above cited rapid increase in corporate owned media properties.

The above cited companies and the content marketing agencies that work with  them have a difficult task at hand when they try to gain the credibility of their target audiences. They can count with a wealth of resources in the form of modern digital marketing techniques.  Last but not least they are redefining the journalistic practice and hiring many journalists. Many editors and reporters who were previously employed by classical media properties have been hired  by major client side marketers and their agencies. Their demand for journalistic skills has risen tremendously.  As Wired’s Editor in Chief Scott Dadich said at a recent Portada event: “There has never been a better time to be a journalist.”

Time will tell whether Marketer owned Mass Media is stretching the rope of consumer trust too much.  Ultimately, and that’s a good thing, the consumer will decide what is trustworthy and what isn’t. After all, a better choice for consumers is just one click -or mobile phone tap- away.

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