Sounding Off: Mike Caprio “Jump Starting Innovation in Latin America”


mike.caprioMike Caprio is the VP of Latin America and GM of Global Trading for Sizmek.

Two years ago Latin America and Asia Pacific were considered emerging digital markets.  Both were ripe with new opportunities to take advantage of the groundwork laid by the more developed digital territories like Europe and the U.S.   However, two years later only one of these growth markets has taken advantage of this opportunity—and unfortunately it hasn’t been Latin America.

Working across 70+ countries at Sizmek (formerly MediaMind), data shows us that Latin America, as a region is 40% less digitally sophisticated than the leading market.  This index takes into account the amount of data, and the adoption of “intelligent” services that help drive the performance and insights from your digital advertising.

Below I’ve identified a few areas where you can quickly elevate your digital competency to be aligned with and ultimately leapfrog, the rest of the developed World.


Data is the fuel that makes your digital engine roar. Without consistent and reliable performance data, you lose a primary benefit of digital advertising. Being able to retarget users who have previously visited your website, who have put something in a shopping cart and not checked out, or you know is a fan of sports, fashion or news, provides great opportunity to reach these consumers with an offer or creative message that provide a stronger likelihood of conversion.

Even in the largest media markets in Latin America, including Mexico and Colombia, agencies track campaigns, but don’t serve them. The distinction is simple. Unless you are serving your ads, you cannot take advantage of this data in real-time. Targeting creative is not possible without ad serving. Brands are very particular about their data, and any digital campaign that is tracked and not served runs the risk of missing key digital drivers that could be the difference between success and failure. And when you’re talking about pennies, it’s not worth the risk.


An important companion to Ad Serving is Attribution—the practice of understanding what steps a user took prior to conversion. When billions of dollars are spent worldwide on search, display, social and video, how do agencies know what creative, or medium drove interest and success? Tools that connect and report in on channels are available.

Verification and Viewability

Fraud in digital advertising is rampant.

Agencies around the World are taking one of two positions: 1.) “I want to know when my clients are being defrauded and do something about it”; or 2.) “What I don’t know doesn’t hurt me”.

Today there are tools being used by the most sophisticated agencies and brands across the globe to provide transparency on their campaigns. How they leverage this varies by agency. Some use it to negotiate make-goods, some use it to identify publishers who honor their insertion orders, and some use it as a veiled threat to put their publishers on notice —to use un-viewable ads for someone else not paying attention.

If you represent a retailer in Mexico, why would you want that ad shown in the Ukraine? Don’t laugh. It happens everyday. Finding a technology partner who is able to marry verification, viewability, and brand safety in your native language is critical. Don’t wait for your client to ask. Take the initiative and run a test. You’ll be surprised at what you don’t know.

HTML5-Creative Across All Screens

Mobile usage has exploded around the World. Ensuring your rich media and video can run across whatever device your user is surfing on is critical. This trend is no more relevant than in social — especially in major social markets such as Brazil.  It’s important to find a technology partner who is also a Preferred Marketing Developer with Facebook.  This will allow video and rich media to be able to run across mobile and desktop with the same creative on the largest and most important social network in World.