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Diego Scotti

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What: Since the first launch in June 2017, Sprint reminds Verizon customers that they’ll get a whole unlimited year for switching.
Why it matters: Telcos are among the largest marketing categories, particularly when it comes to reaching Hispanic consumers.  Both Verizon and Sprint target Spanish-dominant Hispanics and bilingual Millennials.

 

“Keep your Verizon phone and save $900 in the first year,” Sprint’s website proclaims. “Stop feeling ripped off by Verizon.” This promotion, available to anyone who brings an eligible phone and switches to Sprint, has been available since last year. At the time, it was deemed “the most aggressive promotion in the history of the U.S. wireless industry”.

 

Back in June 2017, the promotion had a positive effect on Sprint’s quarterly results. Though a similar outcome can be expected from this revival, the promotion coincides with Sprint removing two of its pricing offers, which will result in a bigger monthly bill for some Sprint customers.

 

The offer is available for both individuals and families, and while it doesn’t include international calls, it includes data and text messaging outside the U.S. Users only have to bring their phone and buy a new SIM card. If they sign up for the promotion, they’ll begin paying monthly fees (starting at US$60) after the free year has been completed, on 1/31/19.

 

Interestingly, both Verizon and Sprint have targeted Hispanic consumers from up close. Exactly two years ago, Sprint’s Hispanic marketing manager Kymber Umaña spoke to Portada about the firm’s multicultural marketing strategy. Sprint understands that for Hispanics, a mobile phone is their gateway to the content they desire but also a necessary means for staying connected to friends and family,” she said. “A majority of our Sprint stores have bilingual staff and offer Spanish-language materials to meet the needs of the diverse Hispanic segment.”

 

The marketing war against Verizon has to do at least to a certain extent with getting the Hispanic consumer’s attention. Last year, only two months after the first launch of the unlimited year promotion, Verizon used the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards ceremony to show an ad targeting US Hispanics. The ad, titled ‘Date Interrupted’ and featuring Mexican actor Luis Gerardo Méndez, showed a Hispanic couple about to interrupt their dinner at a restaurant to go check on their baby at home. Since the Verizon representative on site doesn’t speak Spanish, it is up to Méndez to introduce Verizon’s unlimited data plans to the couple (and save their date). When we asked Verizon EVP and CMO Diego Scotti about the ad, he explained to Portada that it was “a nod to the bi-cultural Latino audience. We are telling them: We get you. We understand you.” It seems this war will be difficult to win. On the one hand, bicultural users like to feel understood; on the other, what can beat a free year of communication with loved ones? If Verizon has the answer, we’ll surely find out soon.

Update: A Sprint representative has contacted us to clarify that the promotion has been available since June 2017; the firm has neither relaunched it nor revived it, though it is a limited-time-only offer. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What: Verizon has launched  AdFellows program, a paid fellowship that will give diverse young marketers internships at companies & agencies.
Why it matters: 20 diverse young marketers will have the chance to work within Verizon & its partner agencies (McCann Worldwide, Momentum, Rauxa, Weber Shandwick, and ZenithOptimedia) over the course of eight months.

Verizon  wants to promote diversity within the marketing industry that is why the company has launched AdFellows program, a paid fellowship that will give 20 diverse young marketers internships to work within the company and at its partner agencies (McCann Worldwide, Momentum, Rauxa, Weber Shandwick, and ZenithOptimedia) over the course of eight months.

Almost a year ago, Verizon’s chief marketing officer Diego Scotti sent letters to 11 of the agencies Verizon works with.

“Verizon is a company that has a long history of diversity, but for us diversity is not just about the right thing to do, it’s critical to our success,” Verizon CMO Diego Scotti, tells Marketing Daily. “For us, when you look at marketing and creativity in particular, the issue around giving diverse talent an opportunity is critical for success.”

Last September, Verizon made public a letter Scotti wrote to his agencies calling for more diversity among the ranks. More diversity would give the company more perspectives into a diverse American public, he said in the letter. He echoed that sentiment when talking about the AdFellows program.

“As an industry, we need to start taking action, and we need to be at the forefront,” Scotti says. “We don’t believe in quotas, we believe in progress, and we have to make that progress.”

Including the agencies among the partners for the fellowships is an important way to show the industry Verizon is committed to encouraging diversity across the board. It also gives potential recruits an opportunity to gain a broader range of experience.

Diego Scotti – “As an industry, we need to start taking action, and we need to be at the forefront”

The paid fellowship will cover housing, and includes a goal to place 90% of the participants in positions at either Verizon or its agencies. Scotti notes the company’s 9-month-old in-house agency is staffed with 50% minorities, and is 52% female.

“It’s not an issue about finding people,” Scotti says. “When you build something from scratch you can do it right from the start.”

But getting recruitment right is only a part of the equation, Scotti says. The next step is creating opportunities and the environment that encourages the diverse workforce to stay for the long-term. He also hopes other companies and organizations take a cue from this program and start their own.

“We want to do something that endures. If you’re going to do that, you’ve got to do it right,” Scotti says. “As an industry, we need to start taking action, and we want to be at the forefront of that.”

 

 

Diego Scotti, EVP and CMO at Verizon Communications, provides exclusive insights into his company”s new mostly Spanish-language spot promoting Verizon’s unlimited data plans. Scotti is responsible for linking the innovations of the company’s product team to the customer-focused operations of the business units to build the Verizon global brand, create consumer awareness and advocacy, and drive customer preference for the brand through all channels.

Verizon aired a mostly Spanish-language spot during last Saturdays’s 2017 MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs). The spot was broadcast through Viacom’s prime-time English-language TV Networks. Why did Verizon decide to broadcast a Spanish-language spot in English-language prime-time TV? “This is a nod to the bi-cultural Latino in the U.S,” Verizon CMO Diego Scotti tells Portada. “Verizon has a long tradition of addressing needs of different multicultural groups. This is a nod to the bi-cultural Latino audience.”  “We are telling them: We get you. We understand you,” Scotti adds.

According to Scotti, Verizon’s new bi-cultural Hispanic foray recognizes the increasing weight of bi-cultural and bilingual Hispanics in the overall composition of the Hispanic population. Until recently, the majority of Verizon’s Hispanic market campaigns targeted the Spanish-dominant part of the Hispanic population.

We are telling bi-cultural Latinos: We get you. We understand you.

Mexican actor Luis Gerardo Méndez teamed up with Verizon to star in the new unlimited data spot. Méndez is known for his role as “Estanislao Shilinsky”; Mario Moreno’s best friend in the movie “Cantinflas” (2012); his starring role as “Javi” in “The Noble Family” (2013); and Co-Producer/Co-Star of “Club de Cuervos” (2015)  Netflix’s first original Spanish production. The choice of a Spanish-language-native actor reflects how much Verizon cares about meeting the needs of the bi-cultural Latino.  “Hispanic audiences often do not like it when the characters in the campaign use English. It is not always tasteful when brands use English-language characters to address the bi-cultural Latino.” “This is an intelligent audience that deserves respect”, Scotti emphasizes.

The new spot, developed by Verizon’s creative agency partner The Community, will be promoted via in in-language media, digital properties – including heavy use  of online video – as well as through guerrilla type of  marketing actions.

CHECK OUT: Into Verizon’s Hispanic Millennial Campaign “Bienvenido a lo Mejor”

The Spot

The new spot, ‘Date Interrupted,’ premiered yesterday (August 27) during the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs). In the spot, a Spanish-speaking couple dines in a nice restaurant, enjoying a special evening away from their baby. Just as they begin to relax, the woman realizes she can no longer view their digital baby monitor on her phone, panicking as she urges her partner to eat faster so they can get home.
Almost instantaneously, Middleditch, of HBO’s Silicon Valley fame, swoops in, but realizes he’s never encountered Spanish speakers until now. Luckily, Mexican actor Luis Gerardo Méndez , who looks and dresses like Middleditch, comes to save the day. Middleditch asks “Who are you?” Méndez replies, “Someone like you but en español.” He then smoothly explains to the couple how Verizon has the best network with the best unlimited data in Spanish, while Middleditch is left bumbling because he doesn’t understand what they’re saying.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQK3S7fnnbA