What: As the perfect opening for this year’s edition of Portada Miami, CNN en Español partnered once again with Portada in its second thought leadership breakfast for multicultural markets. Panelists included Isabella Sánchez, VP, media integration at Zubi Advertising; Ana L. Soto, National Media Manager at JCPenney; David Mesas, VP, Business Development at Geoscape; and Jessica Román, VP, Media Director at Publicis Groupe.
Why it matters: With multicultural consumers representing an increasingly important percentage of the U.S. population, media buyers and vendors need to be very aware of where ad dollars should go, as well as really understand the process of media buying according to what’s happening in the marketplace.

“CNN en Español is at a pivotal moment right now,” said Cathy Reyes, CNN en Español’s Programming VP, to welcome the attendees to the Miami Thought Leadership breakfast. As Reyes told the audience how surreal it seemed to her that now CNN en Español is being measured by Nielsen, a feeling of pride and accomplishment permeated the room, which, to say the least, was packed. The network had been working hard for years and, as Cathy Reyes pointed out, it finally reached that dream. “We’re the most trusted brand in news,” she shared. “We have more spending power in our key demo than other Spanish-language networks including broadcast, and we overindex in Hispanics that have graduated from college.”

To open the conversation about what matters in media buying & planning, Xavier Serbia, anchor of CNN Dinero, moderated a panel of premium speakers including Zubi Advertising’s Isabella Sánchez, JCPenney’s Ana Lucía Soto, Publicis Groupe’s Jessica Román, and Geoscape’s David Mesas. One of the panels main questions was how to deal with the nuances of multicultural markets, to which they punctually answered that, far from being black and white, there are dangers in segmenting the market. “When there are nuances, there’s the danger of being too obvious, of seeming that you’re mocking people,” commented Jessica Román. “The creative part of how stories are told is very important, you can’t take all Latinos and put them in one bucket because that’s not real. Within segments there are so many dialects, so many ethnicities, that sometimes we need to ask ‘What are the commonalities? What are the passion points?’ Those can live across segments and you can start building from there.”

In the era of data, it’s easy for brands and agencies alike to lose sight of what really matters. “I feel like it’s very important to get guidance from the agency because as a client you’re also managing your first-party data that’s telling you about the consumer’s behavior, so having guidance from the agency to translate all this actionable snippets of research is very important in the case of my experience,” pointed out Ana Lucía Soto. “My decision process is: my audience is highly multicultural, that’s the reality of the population, although we have total market clients, we do recommend that population is highly multicultural and we need to make changes to address this population.”

Within segments there are so many dialects, so many ethnicities, that sometimes we need to ask ‘What are the commonalities? What are the passion points?’




But how do you know what data you need to address this market? In the words of Jessica Roman, “It’s not data for the sake of data, it has to be quality data that we’re going to take with a grain of salt, because data is not going to be your bible; it’s what you use to help you make informed decisions.” Technology is taking us to never-before seen places, and it’s making possible what we could have only dreamed of a few years ago. When asked by an audience member about the future of media and where we’re headed, David Mesas put as an example the technology that allows a television to detect when a mobile device is in front of it and later track purchases made after watching a commercial. For Mesas, the key is in sales attribution: “If you have internal data, that’s where you start. First you understand your customer’s profile, then you segment and find others like that. But now there’s technology that can attribute every purchase whether online or at a store, and that’s where I see it going.”

As much data as there is, we need to be careful about not losing the pure common sense that goes with logic. Data can tell you a lot of things, but we have to step back and look at where it’s coming from.

Perhaps the key takeaway of the panel, as it also happened during the Portada Miami conferences, was that evolution is a crucial part of the future. “Everyone has to evolve, whether that be a digital platform or a traditional TV network,” asserted Isabella Sánchez. “Those that evolve are the ones that are going to survive, and I think data and information is just gonna keep coming in and we’re gonna have to decide how to use it. As much data as there is, we’re gonna have to be careful about not losing the pure common sense that goes with logic in terms of when we evaluate things, when we make decisions… Data can tell you a lot of things but we all have to step back and look at where it’s coming from.”

As a final note to this second thought leadership breakfast, Cynthia Hudson, SVP and Hispanic Strategy General Manager at CNN en Español, concluded by reminding the audience that her network is special precisely because “We produce content every day live, and we do everything, because news is not just politics, it’s not just Donald Trump, and it’s not just a bombing in Syria. It’s everything, it goes from lifestyle (we have that content) to entertainment content, to medical content, to cultural content. We are open to business and I say it in a big way.” As Cathy Reyes said to present the panel, it’s a great moment for CNN en Español. To be continued…




Portada and CNN en Español have partnered for the Thought Leadership Breakfasts for the Multicultural Market Series in New York, Miami and Los Angeles:
May 10, Los Angeles, Loews Hotel Santa Monica. Topic: Hispanics Continue to be the Largest Ethnic Minority in the U.S. Today! Are Brands and Marketers still Taking this into Account?
If you wish to attend any of these breakfasts and are a media buying executive at an agency or a client-side brand marketing executive, please contact Andrea Arizmendi.


Janet has worked as editor and translator since 2013. After graduating with honors when receiving her Bachelor's Degree in English literature, she began working as a book reviewer for Expansión, the leading business magazine in Mexico. She has also worked as editor of young adult literature for publishing houses like Planeta and Penguin, and she's the author of a book of short stories. She's in the process of getting her MA in English at McGill University. Her interests include arts, good food, and her 8 pets.

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