Car manufacturers drive growth in online advertising in 2006

Mark Lopez, publisher of AOL Latino, says there has been broad interest in online advertising across a number of industries for the past 18 months. “They’re all looking at the internet,” says Lopez. Fernando Rodriguez, CEO of Terra Networks, expects to continue to see growth in the automotive category. “Auto advertising grew a lot last year and it will be key for driving growth next year,” said Rodriguez. Rodriguez also sees a lot of growth potential in movie and travel categories. “Hispanics overindex for movie going and travel, but movie marketing to Hispanics underindexes.” Matias Perel, CEO of the Latin 3, an agency that focuses on online media buying, also predicts strong growth in auto, travel and movie ad categories.

Rodriguez says The World Cup will be a major factor in driving online ad revenue next year. “It’s an event that will serve as a catalyst for additional advertising by companies already running online campaigns and an incentive for new companies to start advertising online.” According to Rodriguez, consumer electronics and personal finance are still underdeveloped in terms of online advertising targeting Hispanics.

Matias Perel, CEO of the Latin 3, adds e-retailers like Wal-Mart, Target, Sears, and JC Penney, as well as products targeting Hispanic Youth to the list of ad categories to watch. Perel says the computer technology and software category is poised for growth. “They are basically doing nothing right now. Comscore Media Matrix shows that there are a large number of Latinos visiting technology websites, but the companies don’t have Spanish language sites, so they’re losing a lot of potential customers.” But Mark Lopez, publisher of AOL Latino, says a lot of companies, including computer electronics, are still trying to figure out how to best enter the market. “A lot of marketers are still in the research stage.

They’re trying to get a better understanding of how Hispanics are using the Internet, whether they need to have a Spanish-language site or not,” explains Lopez.

Carrie Barnes