Today on The Latin Interactive World, Portada launches a new series on "Pan-regional Advertising." The new series will address the online advertising market, pan-regional market characteristics, and the different strategies that are implemented based on the peculiarities of each country.
We kick off the series with Leandro Santoro, Commercial Director at Psicofxp.com, one of the largest social networks for content, offering a comprehensive platform for sharing information and multimedia content. Santoro tells us how the company manages its advertising and ad campaigns, and outlines its goals and objectives for this year.
At a Glance
Country: Argentina. Founded in February 2007.
Audience: 10 million visitors per month; 2.3 million registered users.
Offices: Buenos Aires (Argentina)
Site Features: Forum
Portada: How do you handle ad sales?
Leandro Santoro: “Psicofxp currently has a sales team in Argentina and strong plans for regional expansion. The company will also be opening sales offices in Mexico (its second most important market) during the second half of 2010, and is currently in talks with leading players in the online advertising industry.”
Portada: ¿What are Psicofxp’s goals and objectives?
Leandro Santoro: “To consolidate ourselves in the Hispanic market as a discussion platform that enables clients to establish a dialogue with other users that share interests related to their products. We want Psicofxp.com to be the name associated with forums and conversations, as well as become one the top Internet companies in the region, and one of the leading choices in interactive advertising.”
Portada: How many unique visitors do you have?
Leandro Santoro: “We get 10 million unique visitors monthly, mainly from Argentina, Mexico and Spain, which are our main markets.”
Portada: How many of your visitors are from the U.S. Hispanic market?
Leandro Santoro: “While our visitors come from all over Latin America, the U.S. Hispanic market is not a major source. We get about 200,000 visitors per month from the U.S., against nearly 2 million or 1.5 million from Mexico or Spain.”
Portada: What are your plans for expanding the site in Latin America?
Leandro Santoro: “Since Mexico and Spain currently represent our major challenges, we will begin direct operations in Mexico during 2010 and work to establish marketing alliances with other media for the rest of Latin America.”
Portada: How do you plan to position the site in the U.S. Hispanic market and Mexico?
Leandro Santoro: “We believe that the key is to personalize the experience around the product for the Mexican audience— we want the users to be able to find content and theme communities related to their countries, and thus be relevant at the local level. At the same time, we evaluated renewing our participation in IAB Conecta in July, and set up business meetings with key advertising and media participants.”
Portada: Are you currently working on, or planning, an ad campaign for the site in these markets?
Leandro Santoro: “We’ll be working on positioning our brand once our head of local operations has been introduced. In any event, we are now exploring various advertising options focused on attracting a wider online audience, as well as positioning ourselves with media agencies and media centers.”
Portada: In what countries do you have offices? How many employees do you have in each?
Leandro Santoro: “Our headquarters are located in Argentina, where we currently have a staff of 21 employees. For our operations in Mexico, we’ll initially have three business representatives.”
Portada: Who are your main advertisers?
Leandro Santoro: Our biggest advertisers at the moment are mass market companies, among them: Massalin (Marlboro), Grupo Telefonica (Movistar), Garbarino (one of the largest appliance stores in Argentina), Warner Pictures and Unilever.
Portada: Who are your investors?
Leandro Santoro: “The company has no investors at the moment. Psicofxp started out as a hobby that grew into a company, thanks to a policy of constantly reinvesting profits.”
Portada: We noticed that you are on sites such as LaNacion.com, where spaces appear for users to comment on specific topics on Psicofxp, such as the World Cup. How do you structure the strategy of these spaces? Are you affiliated with LaNacion.com in this sense?
Leandro Santoro: “With LaNacion.com, we developed a joint effort for the World Cup, which consisted of a mini-site featuring updated information on every match, along with a dedicated space for developing a soccer fan community. The effort was part of our relationship strategy with other media and was conducted by our product area.”
Portada: What other forum-oriented companies do you look to as reference (both inside and outside Latin America)?
Leandro Santoro: “In general, sites that started out as discussion forums were never able to achieve the premium advertising market, because they were mostly projects lacking a business model to grow and position the site. As role models, we closely follow companies such as GetSatisfaction, because of its strategy to provide brands with spaces for dialogue with their consumers; and Zynga, who is currently an example to follow in terms of how to turn a service towards a platform that is integrated into the leading traffic generators all over the world.”