How has the 2009 planning landscape been shaped by recent developments in the national Economy? Are you finding budgets for Hispanic advertising stretched a bit thinner or are they largely unchanged from 2008?
Ilia Leon, Zenith-Optimedia: Hispanic budgets are relatively stable because experienced marketers understand the value of the young and vibrant Hispanic consumer market to their bottom line.
Paul Suskey, Co-founder, Media 8: There have been small to significant changes in ’09 budgets, but from a digital channel perspective, industry to industry, we’ve fared pretty well. Auto investment has been down, and though we haven’t seen it yet finance/banking is likely to be weaker in ’09.
Travel is still pretty strong, however, and certain accounts have raised digital expenditures. Mexicana Airlines was investing 10%-15% of their budget in digital, and then drastically increased it to 70%-80%.
We’ve seen less and less invested in branding/display and much more into search, affiliate marketing, more direct response. Clients want immediate return on their dollar. It’s all about results.
Rachel Stayduhar, Media Analysis Supervisor, American Communications Group: All of our clients are decreasing budgets for print or maintaining flat budgets. Our agency only deals with the print side, so we don’t know if they are moving budgets to other medium in all cases, but many are using some of the money to invest more into online/digital.
In the event that budgets were to shrink, in which mediums would you concentrate more spending and in which mediums would you cut back a bit?
Ilia Leon, Zenith-Optimedia: This would depend on the brand’s challenges, but in hypothetical terms I would scale back across all media and raise the bar on media tactics/executions.
Paul Suskey, Co-founder, Media 8: The more ambient media or campaigns/ mediums that are less measurable.
Rachel Stayduhar, Media Analysis Supervisor, American Communications Group: We deal almost exclusively in print, so this is not really an issue for us. Most of our clients are focused on using the preprint as the main advertising vehicle. Some of our clients have bilingual versions and/or use local Hispanic newspapers in markets that have a high percentage of Hispanic households.
How does event sponsorship compare with print and online ad campaigns in terms of ROI?
Ilia Leon, Zenith-Optimedia: All these marketing/media forms can deliver successful call-to-action campaigns individually and even stronger collectively. Successful ROI campaigns will depend on how well you are able to engage your consumer and create an appetite for the brand. We've experienced highs and lows for these mediums but the only way to learn what works best for your brand is by applying different tactics.
Paul Suskey, Co-founder, Media 8: Tough to gauge, because event marketing’s ROI is so subjective. Online is a good way to extend the experience, though. We extend the event beyond its time through the digital platform.
Are you placing more online video ads on behalf of clients these days? On which sites?
Ilia Leon, Zenith-Optimedia: Yes, we are placing more online videos for our clients these days. All sites pretty much offer video opportunities – there are video networks that have a distribution network to blast our commercials to several sites (extends our reach, maintains efficiencies); you can run video in gaming sites, network sites (ABC.com); news, etc. We have to evaluate the overall campaign goals, the product, and the message in order to place the media with the right partner.
Paul Suskey, Co-founder, Media 8: We are certainly seeing more demand for video creation, and it’s at the heart of every recommendation we make. Whether that’s a micro-site, etc. Taking a 30-second spot and just throwing it up on digital may not have the desired effect. We tend to favor customized skins linking out to e-commerce. Also, thirty seconds online is very lengthy. We tend to go toward more impacting 15-second spots.
Which types of video-ads do you prefer—Pre-roll, post-roll, interstitial, pop-under, etc—and why?
Ilia Leon, Zenith-Optimedia: Video pre-roll and interstitials are preferred – they perform better and are more prominent on the page. We don't purchase pop-unders, and post-rolls just aren't as impacting as pre-rolls.
Paul Suskey, Co-founder, Media 8:
Pre-roll enhanced by a branded video player skin is going to be most effective.
Pop-ups and Pop-unders we generally exclude, partly because the technology to block such ads is so prevalent, but also because it can be irritating to the recipient and thus serve to detract from your marketing effort.