What: Nielsen has released the results of its global connected commerce report, which reveals that
Why it matters: Consumers are spending increasingly more time on an expanded range of diverse digital activities. It is undisputed that internet accessibility, mobile technology and digital innovations are redefining consumers’ every interaction and will continue to enable and disrupt many aspects of consumers’ lifestyles well into the future.

This is the digital era, and as such, we are now living a connected life. That’s the idea that Nielsen has proved with a global survey sent to 30,000 online consumers in 64 countries. The Nielsen Connected Commerce report provides insights into the global connected consumer, shopping traits, category evolution, and barriers, in order to identify future growth prospects.

According to Nielsen, 4 billion people (53% of the global population) are connected to the internet, and nearly all of them (92.6%) connect using their mobile devices. 85% of users (3.4 billion) connect to the internet and spend, on average, six and a half hours online. Consumers get online more often, and they stay connected for longer. It shouldn’t surprise us, then, that the range of activities that can be done online has increased. “Internet accessibility, mobile technology, and digital innovations are redefining consumers’ every interaction and will continue to enable and disrupt many aspects of consumers’ lifestyles well into the future,” declares the report.

Development in retailing has quickly become greater in scope than either the physical or virtual store, and now manufacturers and retailers need to create strategic advantages across channels, touchpoints, and experiences along the purchase journey. Connectivity is laying the foundation for e-commerce growth; it is vital for companies to learn consumers’ online behavior and habits, adoption drivers, tipping points and challenges.

Better connectivity will boost e-commerce

Connectivity’s importance comes from the advantages it has brought upon our lives; it has permitted to do all sorts of things without leaving our homes, from talking to our friends on the other side of the world to receiving just about anything we need at our doorstep, right when we need it. As the report explains, at no point in time could this be more apt than now, considering the merging of multiple factors impacting the complexity of consumers’ lives—and shaping new found shopping experiences. In general, brands need to take three things into account: people now lead busy urban lives and need quicker, easier ways to perform their shopping activities; retail is expanding into new avenues and channels; and we must take into account a whole new generation of native digital shoppers who are used to using these devices and services naturally every day.

The report shows that global online sales in 2017 totaled US $2.3 trillion2 or 10.2% of total retail sales and is expected to reach 17.5% by 2021. In 2019, online retail trailblazer, Amazon, will turn 25 years old. With continued technological innovation e-commerce growth is set to outpace traditional formats for years to come. As the report states, “The combination of existing connected consumers spending more, more often, and newly connected consumers purchasing for the first time will proper e-commerce growth”.

Category performance shows a certain trend of diversification

Travel, entertainment (books, music, events) and durable goods (fashion, IT/mobile, electronics) are traditionally the leading categories for consumers to enter the online retail sphere around the world. After two decades of e-commerce, these categories have higher online purchasing penetration and frequency of purchasing than most consumer goods categories.

The consumer is at the center of the connected commerce opportunity. An e-commerce approach that delivers on the various and varied local consumer preferences and circumstances will have a competitive advantage, but those who solve consumers’ convenience aspirations will win.

However, consumers are looking for a wider range of e-commerce options. With a myriad of services, suppliers, products, and prices to choose from at simpler, more trustful websites, consumers now want to complete transactions online more often. This means a significant opportunity for FMCG categories, which need to be replenished periodically and take up a sizeable portion of consumers’ time to shop in physical stores.

According to the survey results, 17% of consumers are purchasing FMCG products online on a regular basis, while 11% have previously purchased online, but not recently. In addition, 30% of consumers are not currently buying groceries online but are willing to consider doing so in the near future. In developing markets this intent is just as important, with 29% of African and Middle Eastern consumers and 42% of Latin American consumers open to online purchasing.

Seek engagement before purchase

Consumers usually go online looking for information, to compare products and prices before actually buying something. Digital media assets are becoming a vital part of building awareness and consideration, satisfying shoppers’ search needs and delivering tangible links to generate purchase outcomes. As we could expect, it’s all about providing a differentiating experience: as e-commerce continues to evolve there are numerous areas to improve consumers’ overall online experience that will encourage trial and steer conversion to online. With convenience as one of the primary motivators for connected commerce, shoppers are looking for a frictionless experience which saves time, reduces obstacles and provides an enjoyable experience.

Enticers to buy online

Retailers can further solve consumers’ apprehensions via interactive services and guarantees. Same day replacement, free delivery for high-value orders, responsiveness and money back for incorrect orders feature highly to encourage online purchases of consumable products.

In the words of Sue Temple, VP, Global Consumer Insights Product Leadership, Nielsen, “The consumer is at the center of the connected commerce opportunity. An e-commerce approach that delivers on the various and varied local consumer preferences and circumstances will have a competitive advantage, but those who solve consumers’ convenience aspirations will win.”

What: The kyu Collective has announced that it has acquired a majority stake in six-year-old independent digital marketing services company Kepler Group.
Why it matters: Kyu will inherit the Kepler Intelligence Platform, a tool that automates the media buying process from ad creation to targeting.

The kyu Collective, a strategic unit of Hakuhodo DY Holdings, has acquired a majority stake in Kepler Group, a New York-based company focused on offering digital, programmatic, and CRM solutions. The investment in Kepler is the latest in a string of acquisitions by kyu including Digital Kitchen and Sid Lee. Kepler said it has been courted by a few traditional holding companies since it spun out of MediaMath six years ago; however, it was impressed by kyu’s focus on using creativity for social and cause-driven marketing projects, said Kepler CEO Rick Greenberg.

“Kyu has powerful companies in proposition development, product design, behavioral economics and creative,” Greenberg said. “We complete that mix by activating those capabilities in the marketplace through media and CRM.” With the acquisition, kyu will have access to the Kepler Intelligence Platform, a proprietary technology that automates the process of creation and optimization of programmatic targeting strategies.

“Kepler continues to be one of the fastest growing digital marketing services companies because the company exemplifies the future of scientific marketing,” stated Michael Birkin, CEO of kyu. “They are a great addition to The kyu Collective of member companies who represent the future in their domain: one of a kind, disruptive, and forward-thinking.”

Kepler’s integrated digital offering manages cross-channel customer marketing and nearly US $300 million in media spend. Clients include American Express, Bed Bath & Beyond, J. Crew, Fidelity, and Sling Latino. The financial terms of the agreement have not yet been disclosed.

[Featured image: Rick Greenberg and Michael Birkin]

What: The total US ad market has grown by 10.8% in January 2018.
Why it matters: Ad market growth was driven by ad spend in national television and digital platforms, indicating possible further growth for 2018.

Advertising intelligence firm Standard Media Index has revealed national advertising revenue figures for January 2018.  The total US ad market grew by 10.8% in January 2018 compared to January 2017, driven by significant gains in national television and digital platforms.

In January 2018, year-over-year (YoY) advertising revenue in National TV grew +7.1%, with +11.1% growth in Cable and +2.7% in Broadcast.  Digital grew +16.8%, radio declined -6.1%, out-of-home (OOH) declined -2.1%, and print dropped -3%.

“January has been a stellar month for National TV. Scatter volume is up 50% on 2017 as a host of advertisers have stormed back into the market,” said James Fennessy, SMI’s CEO. “Some of this growth has been driven by the move of several big college football games and the Grammy’s into January, but even so underlying growth is still an impressive 5.3%. Based on these results, and our view into forward bookings, we predict National TV to grow 1.6% in Q1, excluding the Winter Games.”

Awards Shows Brought in Important Growth

  • The 60th Annual Grammy Awards on January 28, excluding red carpet coverage, earned US $61 million in ad revenue for CBS, a +3.8% increase from last year.  The paid unit cost for a 30-second commercial spot rose +11.8%, despite losing 24% of total viewers from last year.  That said, CBS reported a 40% increase in unique viewers of the show’s live stream from last year.
  • The 75th Annual Golden Globes, which aired on NBC on January 7, brought in more than US $32 million in ad revenue, a +7.1% increase from last year.  Despite viewership dropping 5% from last year, the average cost of a 30-second commercial spot also increased by 5%.  The 2018 Golden Globes Arrivals Special increased ad revenue by 8%.
  • The 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards, which aired on TBS and TNT on January 21, earned an ad revenue increase of nearly 25% from last year.

NFL Post Season and Cable News

  • Although the regular season NFL games saw a decline in 2017, ad revenue during the post-season increased by +5.3% year-over-year. These figures include the wild card, divisional round and conference championships – the games that took place in January.
  • Cable News continued to show strong growth in January at 25% year-over-year. MSNBC, which also reported record viewership this month, earned a whopping 62% more ad revenue than January of last year.  CNN increased +32% and FOX News increased +17%.
  • Looking at weekday primetime programming, CNN grew nearly 50% in January year-over-year.  FOX News is the most expensive Cable News network for weekday primetime, charging an average $13,600 for a 30-second spot.

Digital Platforms

In January 2018, Digital increased +16.8% year-over-year.  Digital platforms have grown ad revenue on a year-over-year basis in every month since Standard Media Index began tracking the data. Digital’s rate of growth slowed in the second half of 2017 and has been steady around 12% since October.

Social Media networks saw the largest growth in January at 42%Facebook saw the strongest growth at 55%, and Twitter increased its ad revenue 30%.  After some early losses last year, Twitter has been growing on a year-over-year basis for the last several months.  Video Sites grew 10% in January, with large gains from premium video providers.  Hulu increased 20% and Vevo nearly doubled its revenue.

Advertisers by Category

Looking at advertiser categories across National TV, the Auto industry was the largest spender in January, although that amount declined by 3% compared to last year.  Meanwhile, the Insurance industry was the second biggest advertiser, increasing spend by 22%.  Prescription Pharmaceuticals (+4%), Quick Service Restaurants (+10%), Food and Food, Produce & Dairy (-10%) had the largest spend in 2017.

Biggest National TV 
Advertiser Categories (Jan. 2018)
YoY Change in Ad Spend
Prescription Pharmaceuticals+4%
Quick Service Restaurants+10%
Food, Produce & Dairy-10%

Looking at advertiser categories across all platforms, the Telecommunications industry was the largest spender in January, increasing 8.3% year-over-year.  Autos, which were the second largest category, remained flat.  Prescription Pharmaceuticals (+16.9%), Insurance (+25.9%), and QSR (+6.3%) make up the top five.  IT & Software grew the most YoY, more than doubling its spend.

Biggest Advertiser Categories 
Across All Platforms (Jan. 2018)
YoY Change in Ad Spend
Prescription Pharmaceuticals+16.9%
Quick Service Restaurants+6.3%


A summary of the most exciting recent news in online video in the U.S., U.S.-Hispanic and Latin American markets. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.


Warner Music Latina and Natcom Global have entered an agreement to collaborate on the production and distribution of online video. Warner Music Latina and its artists will share in the advertising revenue generated by the video on third-party platforms. The content will be regionally focused, with Latin American and US Latin artists, as well as international performers visiting the region.

The Azteca America network announced two new strategic partnerships with digital/TV programmatic and OTT platform providers, Videology and Zype. Azteca is the first Hispanic network to the market using the Ideology platform, and will be able to plan advertising campaigns using Videology’s proprietary software to gain access to Azteca’s inventory and optimize their buying plans programmatically for better targeting.

Sling TV expanded its Spanish-language offering with the addition of Estrella TV, Vme Kids and El Financiero|Bloomberg TV, to “Best of Spanish TV.” Additionally, Sling TV introduced its SHOWTIME premium, marking the first time an OTT service has offered content from the four leading premium networks.

Video streaming startup PhenixP2P announced on Monday that it has closed a $3.5 million Series A round of funding. KB Partners led the round, in which all of the startup’s existing investors also participated. Phenix will use the funding to support the continued development of its streaming platform, and to scale its sales and marketing efforts.

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd said that online video could continue to be the main “influencing factor” in the estimates for the next six quarters, Bernstein’s Bhavtosh Vajpayee said in a report.

Verizon Digital Media Services today announced that it will soon launch the Verizon Media Xperience Studio, a cloud-based content intelligence system (CIS), which will automate and simplify the online video production and distribution pipeline for broadcasters, OTT providers and online video distributors, all while offering timely and accurate performance, revenue and cost insights that are essential to building a profitable OTT business.

ChannelMeter, Inc., the leading online video analytics platform, has unveiled the ChannelMeter Creator and Influencer Management Suite. This new SaaS platform allows multi-channel networks (MCNs), digital media companies, creator networks, agencies, and now brands to automate large portions of their creator operations.

Google has announced more details about its launch of Programmatic Guaranteed, stating that it will provide support for audience lists, and grant media buyers improved targeting capabilities for desired audiences and sponsorships, meaning publishers can sell premium inventory via DFP on a flat-fee sponsorship basis.

Interpublic Group’s Magna announced that it expects global advertising to grow at 3.7% and reach $511 billion this year. Search and social video are expected to grow significantly, MediaPost reports.

Rocket Fuel, a predictive marketing platform, today announced, in partnership with Integral Ad Science, research showing that within a particular set of video impressions, up to 70% labelled as ‘in-stream’ were actually misrepresented as in-banner.

Snapchat is turning its data on location- and theme-based user-generated snaps into a searchable library.

Google has announced a deal with ComScore to provide independent verification that its inventory is brand safe.

Ooyala and the Digital Production Partnership (DPP) launched the industry’s first report analyzing the benefits of adopting Internet Protocol (IP)-based processes and technologies in video production.


Yahoo has redesigned its homepage and updated its Yahoo Finance and Yahoo Sports pages for its Spanish-speaking audiences in the U.S. and Latin America. The new design encourages sharing, adds personalization and gave the site a more modern look.

Google and the Lemann Foundation, an education nonprofit in Brazil, announced an initiative that will send lesson plans directly to the cellphones of Brazilian elementary school teachers.

The Brazilian digital ad market grew significantly in 2016, as digital ad expenditure reached R$11.8bn (£3bn). This is a 26% year-on-year growth, far higher than the expected 12%, according the the most recent report unveiled by IAB Brazil, “Digital Ad Spend 2017”. 

Él Gráfico, Torneos‘s sports site, has joined the publisher co-op Real Premium Audiences Media (RPA Media Place), which already counts Clarín, Infobae, La Nación, Perfil, and Telefe among its members.

Data from Criteo’s “Ecommerce in a Cross Device Era” shows that in 2015, 45% of online retail transactions in Brazil happened after the user had browsed in two devices. 23% of transactions started on smartphones, and 44% of mobile purchases started on desktop. Criteo also reveal that almost 25% of online purchases in Brazil happen via mobile, a 26% growth.

A summary of the most exciting recent news in online video in the U.S., U.S.-Hispanic and Latin American markets. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.


According to this year’s Deloitte Digital Democracy Survey, 83 percent of U.S. consumers will skip an online video ad if they can, and 67 percent say the majority of the mobile ads they see aren’t relevant to them. For generation Z, that number is 72 percent. Generation Z values recommendations from someone in their social media circle more influential than TV ads.

Chinese TV maker TCL Corporation has launched Ffalcon, a internet TV brand, for younger consumers that will make use of Tencent Holdings and Alibaba Group Holding’s content.

Plazamedia has launched suite of services from Comcast Technology Solutions as part of its plans to expand its digital media portfolio. The collaboration will enable management of premium video content.

Comcast may be planning to launch a national video-streaming service, according to reports released last Friday.

In an ongoing commitment to quality and transparency, DashBid, an advertising exchange focused on creating deep connections between brands and consumers, announces the appointment of Robert McNair as Brand Safety Czar.

AMC Networks will launch a commercial-free online video streaming service aimed at millennial TV subscribers, sources claimed last week.

Kantar Millward Brown’s annual AdReaction study claims that social media has higher ‘reach’ than online videos among Generation Z, but that online video advertising has a better ‘brand impact’.

Dudu, Walmart‘s transactional online video service, has released iOS and Android apps that allow users scan a disc’s barcode with their mobile device, authenticating it for conversion to cloud-based copy. Dudu will charge $2 to convert a DVD into a standard-def copy, or a Blu-ray into a 1080p HDX copy. DVD owners can upgrade to HDX for $5 a unit.

Hispanicize Media Group announced today that LatinaMoms.com and Popful.com will join the HMG portfolio of properties and that it has entered into a joint venture to own part of the Hispanic celebrity influencer network Exit 7 as part of HMG’s acquisition strategy to expand its digital reach.

Twitter announced that it will allow brands to buy commercials on its video streams for Periscope.

According to the Advertising Expenditure Forecast by Zenith, for the first time, internet advertising revenues globally will surpass television this year, reaching $205 billion versus television’s $192 billion. Television’s share of ad spend is down from 35.5 percent last year.


Fandango, the digital network for moviegoers, is significantly expanding its presence in Latin America, one of the world’s fastest-growing theatrical film markets. The company announced it is rolling out a new global brand strategy that includes the release of innovative new ticketing destinations at its subsidiaries Ingresso.com in Brazil, acquired  in 2015, and Fandango Latin Americaformerly Cinepapaya, acquired in December last yearin seven key countries in Spanish-speaking Latin America.

According to a report from Zenith, Latin America saw ad spend down 0.5 percent last year, but is expected to make a recovery to 2 percent annually for the next two years.

According to a new release from Movistar Chile, in January 52% of the country’s mobile traffic was used to stream series, films and online video.

What: Entravision is buying digital advertising company Headway.  The transaction has been financed by cash on hand and is expected to close in the early second quarter, Esteban Lopez Blanco, Entravision’s Chief Strategy Officer, tells Portada. Entravision’s Pulpo Media and Headway will continue to serve clients on a stand-alone basis. Entravision’s stock was up 12% in early trading this morning in the New York Stock exchange.
Why it matters: With this acquisition Entravision, who bought Pulpo Media in 2014, substantially rounds up its suite of ad-tech services both in the U.S as well as Latin America. The company has stated that it intends to increase the share of digital revenues to 20% of total revenues.  The transaction also reflects consolidation in the Latin digital marketing space.

Image result for Entravision Communications CorporationEntravision Communications Corporation is acquiring Buenos Aires, Argentina headquartered marketing-tech firm Headway. Headway has 18 offices around the world that work and provide services including DMP (with its DataXpand unit), mobile branding and performance for app downloads (MoBrain), to programmatic trading, Mediamath representation in Spanish-speaking Latin America, and video and native advertising (Headway recently launched an exchange for Spanish-language native advertising). Bringing in Headway into the Entravision umbrella should help Entravision/Pulpo Media expand the programmatic marketing capabilities through Headway’s strong relationship with MediaMath, which combines advanced marketing software with global reach and scale.  The transaction, which will be funded from the Entravision’s cash on hand, is expected to close early in the second quarter. Additional terms were not disclosed.

Esteban Lopez Blanco
Esteban Lopez Blanco, Chief Strategy Officer at Entravision.

“This purchase will provide synergies with our more than 300 local and national sales team members in the U.S., and the Latin America region. It brings huge opportunities as digital ad spend, e-commerce, internet and smart phone penetration will continue to grow at accelerated rates for many years as compared to the U.S. market,” says Esteban Lopez Blanco, Chief Strategy Officer at Entravision.

The key strategic driver in for this transaction is in the product frontend and data backend integration opportunities which we believe will enhance both Pulpo’s and Headway’s offerings.

Both Pulpo and Headway will continue to serve their clients on a stand-alone basis. Blanco notes that “Headway and Pulpo are strong brands in their own right and provide their clients with a broad portfolio of solutions to proactively engage consumers. The two companies will continue to serve their clients on a standalone basis and each will benefit from the integration of their combined products data and inventories to the benefit of their respective advertisers, agencies and publishers. According to Entravision’s Chief Strategy Officer, Esteban Lopez Blanco,  Headway provides “professionally managed services that enable agencies to advance their programmatic capabilities. Headway and Pulpo are highly complementary and each will benefit from the integration of their combined data and inventories.”

Stronger Footing in Latin America

Image result for headway mediaLopez Blanco tells Portada that, “with Pulpo and Headway we are able to provide marketers a more comprehensive footprint, reaching the entire US and Latin America marketplace. Pulpo Publishers network is ranked in the top 5 in reach as rated by comScore in Argentina, Mexico, Columbia, Chile and Peru and the addition of Headway will allow us to expand our combined reach and better serve clients of both companies.

Founded in 2010, Headway is headquartered in Buenos Aires, Argentina and has 152 employees in 18 offices principally located in North and South America.  Following the closing of the transaction, Martin Kogan will continue to lead the company as Chief Executive Officer, with Agustin Echavarría Coll continuing to serve as Chief Revenue Officer.

What: Facebook recently agreed to an audit of the information it provides to marketers and announced new and improved measurement tools for reachability.
Why It Matters: While the announcement was welcome in the industry, it seemed overdue to some. Just how much it will impact media plans across the board is yet to be seen. What executives at Walton Isaacson, Zubi Advertising and MBMG Media Group have to say.

The announcement was made less than two weeks after Procter & Gamble’s chief brand officer, Marc S. Pritchard, advocated for more transparency on the part of digital ad platforms. But this seems overdue to many in the industry, as an ongoing debate over the accuracy of the platform’s data (and that of other platforms as well, for that matter) ensues.

Worries were justified: last year, Facebook had to admit inaccuracies in its ad measurement tools. Now, the nonprofit Media Rating Council will conduct an audit to “verify the accuracy of the information” Facebook is providing for marketers, and will also be working with 24 third-party measurement companies.

At the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s January 29 conference, Pritchard went as far as to say that online marketing was “crappy” and that the platforms need to “grow up,” when it comes to reporting on viewability and ad performance.

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The new measurement tools may be more exciting than the third-party auditing to some. In the same blog, Facebook announced that it would be releasing a tool in the ad creation flow that shows advertisers the number of users they can expect to reach with potential ad campaigns.

Albert Thompson, a digital strategist at full service marketing agency Walton Isaacson, was interested in the tools’ appeal to those who doubt Facebook’s reach in terms of generating meaningful engagement: “Seems FB has taken one step further in an attempt to ‘jump the shark’ through promoting its estimated reach tool to support the reassurance that the social giant’s value lies in buying ‘people’ and their engagements and not just pages (noted by digital impressions).”

Others are cautiously optimistic: “I think it will be interesting to see what the results of the audit will be, and how Facebook compares to other large media outlets on key metrics, especially video completions and viewability,” said Zach Rosenberg, the president of MBMG Media Group.

Buyers will now have the option of holding Facebook to the same standards as other partners on our plans and optimize or adjust accordingly as a result.

Marian Lozano, Associate Media Director at Zubi Advertising, said that while she agrees that the move was overdue, the important development is that “buyers will now have the option of holding Facebook to the same standards as other partners on our plans and optimize or adjust accordingly as a result.”

She recognized that while she agreed that the move was overdue, it will inevitably have an impact: “Particularly as it relates to targeting Hispanics online, ad measurement and audience validation is critical for all of our clients’ digital campaigns,” and that “platform updates like this will be key to restore whatever degree of skepticism has crept into the minds of today’s media buying circles.”

What: Technology-based marketing company Headway has introduced NativeWay, the first marketplace for native ads on Spanish-language sites.
Why It Matters: As programmatic in LatAm heads into what Headway’s VP of Product & Strategy Dario Diament calls its “second phase of evolution,” NativeWay will help advertisers connect their messages with targeted Spanish-speaking audiences.

Technology-based marketing company Headway, which has a significant presence in Latin American and US-Hispanic markets alike, recently introduced NativeWay, the first marketplace for native ads on Spanish-language websites. The platform makes it possible for advertisers to incorporate the concept of content marketing into Spanish-language advertising for the first time.

NativeWay allows advertisers to place highly customized ads into editorial space on Spanish-language websites, adapting each ad to the structure of the publishers’ sites. Advertisers can access Headway’s long list of publishing partners, i.e. sites and content creators, to make sure that their ads are placed on sites whose content is relevant and engaging to their target audiences. In this sense, the advertisement is both organic and interesting to the reader, and more likely to generate clicks and drive revenue.

Latin American Programmatic Entering ‘Second Phase’ of Evolution Driven by Native Ads

The concept of native advertising has been shaking up the US advertising market for some time now, as advertisers have embraced it as a way to transmit marketing messages through storytelling as opposed to traditional advertising distributed through standard banners and videos.

Dario Diament, Headway’s VP of Product & Strategy, explained that “Latin American programmatic is entering the second phase of evolution, past the basic understanding of

Dario Diament, VP of Product and Strategy at Headway Digital
Dario Diament, VP of Product and Strategy at Headway

networks and audiences.” Nonetheless, he says, there is a “gap” in native advertising that has left clients searching for better ways to communicate with particular audiences. Headway decided it was the right time to “invest in developing a marketplace and find the right partners through contacting and educating the owners of websites and content creators,” Diament said.

To use the platform, advertisers can create one or various standard images with editorial intro texts. Then, Headway’s technology distributes the ads to hundreds of sites, where they are placed within the structure of the website. “Instead of banners, you are seeing a sponsored article or link to an interactive experience or video: something relevant in a relevant context,” Diament said.

Latin American programmatic is entering the second phase of evolution, past the basic understanding of networks and audiences.

Another plus is that the advertisers do not have to design a new set of ads for each site: NativeWay adapts the template ads to each advertising space as needed, cutting out the extra work associated with creating different ads for different formats and sites.

Educating Publishers on Native Advertising a ‘Process’

One of the most important factors behind NativeWay’s success will be educating the publishers of the Spanish-language sites so that they understand the benefits of partnering with Headway and venturing into the universe of native advertising.

“Publishers are used to creating sites with spaces for banners that they monetize, but when you offer them the opportunity to show content automatically, the biggest challenge is to change the paradigm of leaving spaces open on the site for advertisers,” Diament explained.

To use NativeWay, publishers do not have to modify their existing pages, but they do have to make the few technical changes necessary for any ad campaign and select where on the page they want the ad to appear. Another benefit is that publishers are not forced to pick traditional or native: they can use NativeWay while maintaining traditional ads like banners.

Publishers are used to creating sites with spaces for banners that they monetize, but when you offer them the opportunity to show content automatically, the biggest challenge is to change the paradigm of leaving spaces open on the site for advertisers.

And since the publishers sometimes feel a lack of quality control when it comes to whose ads end up on their sites, Headway goes out of its way to make sure that all of their advertisers are “first-class,” and assured us “there won’t be anyone selling some magic hair cream.”

NativeWay Compatible with DSPs 

Headway works with trading desk and advertisers to help each client to find the most adaptable sites for its ads. In this sense, the platform is as versatile as it is exact. Diament highlighted that clients can target as specifically as they want: “When clients plan for programmatic, they can use various signals through segmentation, lifting or selecting sites where you want to appear or filtering by audience.”

It is also notable that advertisers can place their native ads using any programmatic platform. This is innovative because “the trend is to use traditional formats for programmatic: typically, programmatic does facilitate native ads,” Diament said. NativeWay ads can we bought programmatically through most DSPs.

Native Advertising Surpasses CTR Standards, Delivers Relevant Content 

So far, Headway is more than confident in the effectiveness of NativeWay, confirming that the ads consistently surpass CTR standards while ensuring that they are seen by people that care about them in a relevant context.

When done right, native ads have proven to generate high click levels and traffic because the reader is drawn into the experience offered through highly relevant content. “This is a very rich experience for publishers and advertisers to incorporate,” Diament concluded.

Diament says that Headway has “coordinated campaigns in the automobile, mass consumption and women’s categories,” and that the roll-out of NativeWay has been very encouraging.

With vast experience in both international and Spanish-speaking regions of Latin America, Headway is more than qualified to blaze trails when it comes to offering continuing innovation to the region and connecting Spanish-speaking audiences with relevant and engaging ads.

Codoon, the largest social sports platform in China, is pushing into the United States market after closing a $50M funding round. One of its apps, Runtopia, has 40M active users in the country, and Codoon has turned to Israeli mobile advertising platform Taptica to push it in the American market, driving user installs through Facebook. Could this be a sign of increased Chinese interest in breaking into the US digital market, and a continuing trend of Israel serving as a bridge between the East and West?

Runtopia connects users with an app that tracks runs, shares exercises and helps running enthusiasts meet each other, and contains a GPS and sensor for tracking. And there are plenty of running enthusiasts in the U.S.: in 2015, there were an estimated 60 million active joggers and runners in the country, with thousands of marathons and half-marathons taking place each year.
And while running apps are nothing new to Americans, Codoon is hoping to impress the American market with what they believe is superior technology. “The love of running knows no cultural barriers – we are targeting all running enthusiasts to enjoy Runtopia, who generally tend to be young professionals and smart device users,” said Xiaoyun Wu, Head of Sales and Operations for the APAC region at Taptica.

But for that to happen, the company needed a partner capable of providing a wide range of traffic sources. Enter Taptica and its proprietary technology, which leverages big data to enable targeting at scale so that brands can engage with mobile audiences, and has worked with companies like Amazon, Disney, Facebook, Twitter, OpenTable, Expedia, Lyft and Zynga.

Sports platform Codoon has the majority market share in China, and wants to expand in the U.S.

James Si, a vice president at Codoon, explained that Taptica’s acquisition of AreaOne, a long term Facebook Marketing Partner badge holder, made the company very attractive to them, as the company is “equipped with both the ad technology platform that fully automate Facebook advertising and its powerful DMP, which is fueled by the repository of big data from billions of impressions driven from the mobile campaigns.”

Codoon was also attracted to the fact that “Taptica has a truly international team, the perfect mixture of the West and the East,” and that “Taptica’s Beijing local office in Beijing provides warm, timely service to us, while Taptica’s American and Israeli team help us to understand the consumer habits acodoonnd the marketing techniques of the West.”

Wu added: “With our headquarters in Israel, along with offices in San Francisco, New York, Beijing and Seoul – we are truly an international company and we’ve localized in China so there is a blend of cultural and business similarities that help us work well together.”

Israel Serves As Tech Hub, Bridge Between East and West 

Israel has long been held in “high esteem as a hub of innovation,” said Wu. He also explained that China is taking advantage of Israel’s access to innovation to learn as much as possible to “position itself in an innovation economy,” while Israel also takes advantage of the relationship to learn about opportunities in the East.

China had long sowed the seed for innovation in the digital era.

“Israelis are more culturally similar to the Chinese than to the Americans, which facilitates negotiations and ongoing business relationships. We’ve heard over and over from our Chinese partners that the Israeli ‘can do’ attitude is something they can easily identify with.” Wu added. taptica

According to Si, Codoon has wanted to build up the Runtopia app for the American market from the get-go, signaling increased Chinese interest in the Western market. “We designed a totally different product for the American users,” Si said, based on the understanding that running habits are different in the United States than in China, “where the population is much more dense and concentrated in the cities.”

To these ends, Taptica’s proprietary technology leverages big data and machine learning to provide quality media targeting at scale, and designed full sets of creative based on the core audience of American runners, combined with automated keyword optimization, “which has nicely given us the best bang for our marketing dollars,” Si added. “In the future, we may develop further specialized applications: for example, we may even enhance the user experience by designing wearable devices for seniors that are less used to smartphones.”

Encouraged By Innovation, Chinese Will Push Into American Digital Market

According to Si, “going into the West is an important strategic move” for Codoon, and Runtopia plays a large role in that strategy for expansion: taking advantage of American users’ enthusiasm for running. “We are on the way to build one of the most interesting product in the world. We will keep on updating our product to meet American users’ needs,” Si elaborated.

Chinese development and innovation is moving at a very fast pace – they are leading the way in mobile – and it will be interesting to see how their globalization efforts change the mobile landscape in the years to come.

But why are companies like Codoon pushing into the United States now? The answer is simple, in Codoon’s case: the company has the majority market share in China, and wants to expand. “This is a trend that we’re seeing from lots of innovative Chinese companies that are exporting superior mobile apps and sharing them globally,” Wu said.

In general, Wu asserted that the Chinese tech industry is focused on figuring out how to crack into Western markets.“They are not only becoming more comfortable with expansion, but they are becoming very good at globalization,” he said. While there are still cultural barriers that “can’t be overcome solely through technology,” partnerships like that between Codoon/Runtopia and Taptica are critical “because cracking culture is about working with people who have unique local knowledge.”

“Chinese development and innovation is moving at a very fast pace – they are leading the way in mobile – and it will be interesting to see how their globalization efforts change the mobile landscape in the years to come,” Wu said, expressing excitement for what could be to come.

Si agreed that “there is a lot of brain power in China, making promising products at an astonishing speed.” And since China has a huge population base, applications are updated by users constantly, and consequently, Chinese developers are very skilled. “China had long sowed the seed for innovation in the digital era,” Si concluded.

A summary of the most exciting recent news in online video and ad tech in the US, US-Hispanic and Latin American markets. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.


Ooyala has released research that indicates that mid-roll video ad placements are becoming more popular. In February 2015, studies showed that three-quarters (75%) of online video ad placements consisted of pre-rolls in February 2015, against just 20% for mid-rolls. But by April 2016, mid-rolls rose by 25% accounting for 33% of video ad placements while pre-roll has gone down to 60%.

univisionUnivision Communications has tapped BroadbandTV to manage its YouTube content and channels as a part of its outreach efforts for Hispanic audiences in the U.S. and internationally. BroadbandTV has proprietary technology to upload and monetize fan-generated content for Univision.

Walmart has announced that it is expanding Vudu, an on-demand mostly-centric movie video service, launching a free movie digital service called Vudu Movies on Us, which will be supported by advertising. The movies will have both pre-roll and mid-roll commercials.

Google has launched a “skinny” bundle of TV networks called “Unplugged.” CBS has signed a carriage deal, and Walt Disney and 21st Century Fox are  thought to be close to signing. The bundle of live TV channels at around $25 to $50 per month, and will launch in early 2017.

IHS Market Research has released studies showing that Netflix and Amazon spent $7.5 billion on programming in the last year, more than CBS, HBO and Turner. And the World TV Production Report revealed that between 2013 and 2015, Amazon’s investment in SVOD and online video went from $1.22 billion in 2013 to $2.67 billion in 2015, and Netflix spent $4.91 billion in that period.

In Netflix‘s quarterly letter to shareholders, it stated that while Amazon is picking up momentum in the streaming market, it’s not too worried about them catching up.

According to Eurodata TV Worldwide research, released at MIPCOM Comcast, Time Warner, Sky, Germany’s Kabel Deutschland, India’s Sun Direct, France’s Orange, Mexico’s TelMex and China Telecom are the world’s most powerful players in global distribution. Additionally, it revealed that at least 50 new mainstream SVOD platforms have launched around the world since Netflix launched in 2010. It also tracked the expansion of niche services targeted at specific demographics.

Video inventory management platform, SpotX, and BrightLine, the market leader for advanced TV and OTT advertising, have joined forces to accelerate the automated purchasing workflow of advanced TV ads across millions of U.S. households. The integration will empower publishers to automate the sales of personalized, household-addressable advanced ad units within connected TV (CTV) environments.
Ooyala has announced their partnership with Toca Boca, the number one ranked mobile-first kids brand in Apple’s app store. This way, Toca Boca will be able to deliver its video library of original and curated content to its global audience base to drive engagement and loyalty as well as higher revenue through subscriptions.

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ESPN has launched its flagship ESPN App in Spanish-speaking Latin America. Available on Android and iOS, it has dedicated local editions in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Venezuela and has the same capabilities and functionalities as the U.S. edition.

Microsoft has launched its first Transparency Center in Latin America in the city of Brasília (DF), Brazil to promote trusted and safe computing, which is key to the industry and to abating security concerns in the sector. The first Microsoft Transparency Center was launched in 2014 in Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, Washington.The World Bank‘s investment arm, the netInternational Finance Corporation, has made a $1 million commitment to Argentine accelerator NXTP Labs as part of its $30 million Startup Catalyst initiative, which backs accelerators and seed funds in emerging markets.AT&T’s focus on growing the newly acquired Mexican operations in 2015 has been successful: the company added 742,000 wireless net subscribers in 2Q16, and Mexican wireless subscribers are nearing a total of 10 million. DIRECTV added 87,000 video subscribers in LatAm in the last quarter. 

PORTADA RESEARCH: Hispanic Online Video Ad Market to Soar to US $450 million. In a new report Portada estimates that the Hispanic Online Video Ad market volume will climb to US $450 million by 2020. Particularly high growth is to be expected by branded content videos. Among video ad-tipes, in-stream will continue to have the largest share, although out-stream will grow at a higher rate.

Here we are again, this time with August’s latest, although its alerady the third week of September!. I love it when people say that they read this column (I admit that I like it more when people tell me they find it fun). I feel like I’m the chef that likes to see people clean their plate with bread. And since we are in confessional mode, I also love it when people ask me to publish their news. At the end of the day, this is a space for everyone in the digital industry in Latin America. Here we go with the highlights of the month.

Vintage MySpace

The IAB Connect 2016, organized by IAB Mexico, took place on August 24. Of all of the guests, some of the most fun were ex MySpace Mexico’s Nancy Gomez, Choche Sosa, Alejandro Salazar and Martha Carlín, who uploaded pictures of the event to Facebook (to think that at one point MySpace and Facebook were competitors). What an interesting path we’ve all taken!

The Agency Reality Show

Rodrigo Figueroa ReyesSomething is brewing in Buenos Aires, and Rodrigo Figueroa Reyes (founder and CEO of FiRe Advertainment) is behind it. It seems that his team is thinking of launching a reality show in which 10 creative pairs will have to come up with ad campaigns for different brands. As is the case at all agencies, there will be directors and account executives that will help (and hinder) the teams’ activity. If gastronomy has MasterChef, music has The Voice and entrepreneurs have Shark Tank, advertising needs something, too! Bring it on!

OmegaWatches and the Olympic Games

I was at the Omega watch event (they were the official timekeepers of the 2016 Olympic Games) on August 17 at an exclusive restaurant in Buenos Aires, and it was a great opportunity to reinforce the brand’s attributions, one of which is measuring time with high precision for each competition. This is no small detail if we consider that cell phones have taken terrain from watches, not only because they have a watch incorporated, but because they allow us to renegotiate the time when we realize we have fallen behind.

Coca-Cola For Me

During August, Coca Cola launched the application “Coca Cola For Me” in Argentina, Chile and Peru. Oriented towards the younger segments, this content platform allows users to visualize videos on demand called “Glups,” access a digital radio through which they can program their own music, connect to exclusive transmissions via streaming, share with their friends and win prizes and benefits. I hope to be within their target (I am a sort of Benjamin Button).

Fer GualdaLogan Opens Office in Chile and Brings On Gualda

I was told that Fernando Gualda (current sales and distribution VP for Latin America at ZooMoo, and previous SVP for the Southern Cone at Fox International Channels) just joined the office of Logan Chile as the director and partner in the company. Good luck, Fernando!

That’s all for now, friends. See you next month!

Expenditure on luxury advertising will rise by 3.0% in 2016, up from 1.9% in 2015, according to Zenith’s Luxury Advertising Expenditure Forecasts second annual edition. Luxury advertisers will spend a total of US$10.9bn across the top 18 markets(including The United Stated) in 2016, up from US$10.6bn in 2015. The USA is the largest luxury ad markets, accounting for 45% of luxury adspend in 2015, according to the report.

0001This is the second annual edition of the Luxury Advertising Expenditure Forecasts, which examines expenditure on luxury advertising in 18 key luxury markets.* This report focuses specifically on luxury advertising, together with the sub‐categories of luxury automotive, fragrances & beauty, fashion & accessories, and watches & jewellery.

Adspend global total was buoyed by strong growth in North America (3.6%) and Western Europe (4.7%).

North America will stay strong, with 3.9% growth. Overall, the report forecast 3.0% growth in luxury adspend across our top 18 markets in 2016. Luxury advertising is growing less rapidly than advertising as a whole.

The USA is the largest luxury ad market, accounting for 45% of luxury adspend in 2015.

Across the 18 markets, luxury advertising grew by 2.9% in 2014, compared to 5.6% for advertising as a whole, and 1.9% in 2015 (compared to 4.1%). The report forecast this underperformance to continue, with luxury advertising growing 3.0% in 2016 compared to 4.5% growth across all categories.

The USA, along with China, is driving growth in luxury advertising Between 2015 and 2017. In total, luxury advertising is expected to grow by US$705m. 82% of this growth will come from the USA (US$347m).

The USA is the largest luxury ad markets, accounting for 45% of luxury adspend in 2015.



The USA continues to expand, with GDP growth rates of 2.5% and 2.6% in 2015 and 2016 according to the IMF and an unemployment rate at 4.9%. Yet consumer confidence is declining compared to last year.

The rise of the dollar enabled the US to emerge as the strongest global region for the purchase of personal luxury goods in 2015. However, the strengthened dollar also poses a problem for many foreign tourists, who are now travelling elsewhere.So although local consumption of luxury goods increased during 2015, this growth barely managed to offset the drop in tourism revenue on the US luxury goods market.

That said, luxury adspend will continue to grow in the coming years – by 3.9% in 2016 and 3.3% in 2017, the report forecast. TV will remain the main medium for luxury advertising (42% market share in 2015) but digital should overtake print to become the second luxury medium in 2016 (with 29.5% market share compared to 28.9% for print).


Luxury experiential travel remains robust

Experiential travel was relatively unaffected by the recession and has done well during the recovery, thanks in part to millennials, who still purchase luxury goods but value customized experiences over items.


Influence of new media

Despite being latecomers to the digital world, an increasing number of luxury brands are embracing digital technology, aiming to understand the changing behaviours and desires of luxury consumers and enhance brand awareness by adopting a fresh approach instead of continuing to invest in spaces where their consumers know and expect to see them. The luxury market is turning towards a holistic consumer experience, both in stores and across online platforms. Brands are using mobile devices, digital out of home and even 3D technologies to create a coherent and engaging luxury experience.

M-commerce should continue to rise in 2016, with launches of “shoppable” apps by luxury retailers-turned-publishers, such as Net-a-porter with Porter magazine or Barneys with The Window, an online retail blog that has become a branded print magazine.

Social networks that propose new formats such as Facebook’s Canvas should enable advertisers to create immersive, entirely branded app-like experiences.

Digital will be the largest luxury advertising medium in 2017.

Digital advertising is by far the biggest contributor to the growth in luxury advertising, growing consistently at double‐digit rates.

Digital media adspend by luxury advertisers is expected to increase by US$837m between 2015 and 2017. Over this period, television, radio and cinema will increase by a total of US$26m between them; outdoor will shrink by US$10m; and print will shrink by U$150m.

By 2017, print will account for 28.6% of total luxury adspend, down from 31.9% in 2015. TV’s market‐share will also decline over the same period, from 32.7% in 2015 to 30.7% in 2017.

Digital’s market‐share will increase from 26.3% in 2015 to 32.1% in 2017, when it will overtake TV and print to become the single largest medium for luxury advertising.

Print remains the most important medium for ‘high luxury’ advertisers Despite its decline in market‐share, print remains particularly important to luxury advertisers, specifically those in the fashion & accessories and watches & jewellery sub‐categories.

In 2015, fashion & accessories advertisers spent 83% of their budgets in print, and watches & jewellery advertisers spent 60%. Print titles – especially glossy magazines – provide high‐quality, immersive yet relaxed reading experiences, a particularly suitable environment for luxury advertisers wishing to showcase their brand values.

Digital media adspend by luxury advertisers is expected to increase by US$837m between 2015 and 2017


Data informed platforms

Luxury advertisers were slow to adopt programmatic buying compared to other advertisers, instead favouring content alignments, because programmatic initially valued efficiency and eyeballs over immersive experiences in premium environments. Luxury advertisers are just beginning to use data to target affluent individuals – using purchase behaviours, credit card info and travel data. For example, Pomellato has begun using its own web data to retarget current customers who are likely to be strong brand advocates. They also use look-a-like modelling to reach new, potential customers based on current customers’ online behaviours like credit card usage, travel and the day of the week they are most likely to make a purchase.

In-house native advertising

Native advertising is becoming a dominant advertising format and should continue to grow, driven by mobile devices and social networks. A lot of publishers and advertisers have developed in-house native advertising studios to keep control of content creation. Condé Nast launched its much buzzed-about in-house native advertising studio 23 Stories, which allows advertisers to work directly with its own editors on branded content. Marriott also launched its owned creation studio, “M Live”.

*The 18 markets are China, Colombia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, Peru, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.

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To industry outsiders, the NewFronts seem like something out of Mad Men – and that’s because they are.

For the uninformed, the NewFronts are digital’s answer to television’s Upfronts, through which networks debut programming including new shows and old hits, and executives do their very best to wine, dine and schmooze their way into securing commitment from advertisers before the season starts.

In contrast, the NewFronts are events held over the course of two weeks that are organized by digital video companies to show advertisers the kinds of bang they can get for their buck on their platforms. Those who can’t do that are “left to the scatter market,” as Yahoo’s director of sales for US Hispanic Matthew Harris says.

Ditching Old School for Digital

It’s all very old school, which is why it seems strange that digital, such a modern rejection of everything TV, would try to copy TV. But as digital slowly starts to catch up to television, the NewFronts have come into their own, and the increasing value of reaching the Hispanic consumer has played no small part in shaping today’s digital landscape.

Multicultural Digital always rises to the top as a priority due to the Hispanic consumer media behaviors.

Harris affirmed that US Hispanics were a “recurring theme” at Yahoo’s even this year, and that Joe Zee, Yahoo’s style editor, mentioned Hispanic consumers in his presentation, which was “a signal of Yahoo’s broader commitment to the Hispanic community,” confirmed Harris.

But reaching Hispanics means understanding the evolving Hispanic consumer. Harris pointed out that Yahoo transformed its Yahoo en Español  into Yahoo US Hispanic for bilingual, acculturated audiences, as “Spanish-language only is a disservice and disadvantage,” Harris says.

Mobile and Video Reign

“Multicultural Digital always rises to the top as a priority due to the Hispanic consumer media behaviors,” says María Fernández Ordóñez, senior vice president and and media director at the agency Identity. Hispanic consumers tend to keep up with the latest trends in mobile consumption, so “when developing media plans for this consumer and seeing how driven they are to use digital media and particularly mobile and watching video, these two platforms get the highest media allocations,” Ordóñez adds.

popsugar-newfronts-hed-2016-444x250All platforms were excited to introduce their Hispanic-oriented content to advertisers. Geoff Schiller, POPSUGAR’s CFO, comments that it went beyond its regular POPSUGAR Latina channel this year, creating strategic partnerships with Mas Mejor, Broadway Video’s premium comedy studio starring Latino influencers.

At its NewFronts event, POPUSUGAR also premiered Cooking Rodriguez, a scripted comedy about an aspiring Cuban YouTube chef created by Marlena Rodriguez, a writer who contributed to season two of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

In general, the NewFronts also reflected the general shift in advertising budgets from television to digital. Ordóñez notes that IPG committed $250MM to buy Google Preferred inventory for Broadcast 2017, and 250MM more to an upfront deal with YouTube. Schiller says: “TV to digital investment has yet to reach its apex, but many brands such as General Motors and Hilton are making deep investments with us in the digital video space and we anticipate investments like this to increase substantially, both with POPSUGAR and across the industry.”

Viewability didn’t seem to be a huge concern, at least nobody will admit that it is. But everyone is investing in understanding consumer behavior – with an emphasis on Hispanic consumers. Yahoo says that its data and insights team is constantly producing material on trends in Hispanic behavior so that advertisers are assured to connect with this complex audience, and both Yahoo and POPSUGAR have put together studies of US Hispanic digital consumption and behavior.

Understanding Consumer Behavior

Other trends included the increasing adoption of technology and data to optimize resources. Yahoo believes that its “focus on data” is more important than ever, as Harris highlights the company’s acquisition of Flurry, an analytics firm, which provides access to millions of touch points across mobile devices to help him and his colleagues learn about audiences and find device IDs, and BrightRoll, the DSP that helps Yahoo serve advertisements and target audiences.

While the NewFronts still maintain the structure of television’s upfronts, the digital landscape is now large and complex enough that we would be wise to stop comparing the two.

All of this technology is aligned with the company’s content strategy for news, lifestyle, sports and finance in a restructuring effort that Harris says helps the company “focus on the couple of things we do well, hone in on them and take resources that were too spread out.”

While the NewFronts still maintain the structure of television’s upfronts, the digital landscape is now large and complex enough that we would be wise to stop comparing the two. Digital is still creating its own path and grappling with how to make the best use of its data, but there is no doubt that today, consumers are living in a digital realm on multiple screens, and advertisers are paying attention.

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What: Direct Sales and Social Selling are very connected. Noone knows this better than Rebeca Ricoy, Senior Manager of Digital Strategies at Avon NoLA. Ricoy speaks to Portada about the evolution of the company, which is focused on direct cosmetics sales, toward the adoption of digital platforms, as well as the challenges that the company is facing in the process. Ricoy is one of the many major brand marketers that will be participating at #PortadaLat, which will take place in Miami on June 8-9.
Why It Matters: LatAm is one of the regions that Avon is betting on the most. When it comes to revenue, Brazil is the brand’s largest market, and Mexico is the second-largest. At the global level, Avon has six million representatives, and LatAm is one of the regions that contributes the most to that statistic. In 2015, for example, 650,000 new representatives joined the company in Mexico.

Rebeca Ricoy
Rebeca Ricoy, senior manager of digital strategies at Avon NoLA

Portada: What challenges is Avon facing in terms of going from direct sales to digital/social sales? 

RR: “To us, even though we are going digital, direct sales will be maintained because we have representatives that recommend Avon products to their friends on social media. Independently of that, we have two great challenges: on the one hand, Internet penetration in Mexico is low compared to that of other countries. On the other hand, an important part of our consumer base today is made of women from a lower socioeconomic level, and older women, many of which have no access to technology. We need to incorporate more digital representatives and train our current salespeople to explain the great benefits of digital tools.”

Portada: With digital development, are direct sales more complicated?

RR:” No. Direct sales are still occurring, and even more so in Latin countries where human contact and “buying from a friend” is much more powerful than a store without a face.”

“The challenge is to give our representatives the different technological tools so that they can multiply their business and take advantage of the digital boom.”

Portada: How have consumers reacted to the evolution of the brand towards digital?
RR: “We have two targets: our consumers and our representatives. In both cases, our trend toward digital has been well-received. Especially since we re-branded through “Beauty with a Purpose” last year. This re-branding came with a 360 strategy for content strongly supported by digital. The evolution is slow, but the goal is clear.”

Portada: What challenges does marketing through digital platforms present?

RR: “There are various challenges, on the one hand, speaking to and staying relevant to the final consumer without leaving our representatives behind. On the other hand, generating adequate tools to increase earning opportunities  through platforms so that representatives can adapt to change and take advantage of it.”

Portada: What role do social media platforms play for Avon in LatAm?

RR: “They are key to communicating and interacting with our representatives and final clients. It is a great thermometer for us. It’s so relevant that we have made large investments in the last two years in which we have pushed more and more toward digital media. Of our digital investment budget, 90% goes to social media.”

Portada: Which do you use the most?

RR: “For our target and category types, the networks we use the most are Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter (in that order of importance). We are starting to explore Pinterest, although we know that this network is very niche, but aligned with our target.”

Portada: Do you use influencers?  

RR: “We still haven’t done that as much as we wanted, but we are working on some projects that integrate influencers. It doesn’t matter if they are local or multicultural, as long as the audience coincides with the target of Avon NoLA.”

Portada: How do you choose them? Do you use some type of software or special agency?

RR: “Our digital, media and public relations agency makes recommendations together; each one uses its own analytics and listening tools to come up with the best proposal. Internally, we have our own market research area that can help us understand if they are relevant to our market and our representatives.”

Portada: What other challenges do you think Avon faces? 

RR: “One of the greatest challenges we will have is attracting a younger, more digital target that can help us evolve the business. To do this, we need to scale our social sales, connecting those who look for beauty products with those that sell them through a solid digital platform to offer an experience that integrates the consumer and the representative.”

The New York Times recently announced that it would be publishing a Spanish-language digital edition, an exciting development as the paper set an ambitious goal of growing digital revenue from $400 million in 2014 to $800 million by 2020.

Portada-Online.com - HomePage - Image - 1200 x 628 - 1.9-1 - News (2)

We spoke to Stephen Dunbar-Johnson, The Times’s publisher for International, to discuss the preparation and strategy behind this decision, and how it will factor into the paper’s larger global monetization goals.

“Like Mixing a Cocktail”

While undertaking a Spanish-language edition is a serious commitment, it will complement the paper’s already impressive global presence: The Times‘s site has over 30 million site visits from outside of the United States every month. Within Latin America, it already distributes its International Weekly supplements to newspapers in Mexico (Diario de Yucatan, and Grupo Reforma’s Reforma, El Norte y El Mural), Nicaragua (El Nuevo Diario), the Dominican Republic (Listín Diario), Guatemala (Prensa Libre), Brazil (Folha, Gazeta do Povo), Argentina (Clarín), Chile (Mercurio), Colombia (El Espectador), Bolivia (La Razon) and Peru (Correo).

The new Spanish-language edition will feature a mix of original content written by local journalists and material from The Times (translated meticulously at their bureau in Mexico).  “It’s a little like mixing a cocktail,” Dunbar-Johnson says, emphasizing that the content will evolve as they learn about their audience. Despite the significant reputation and reach of The Times on a global scale, Dunbar-Johnson was quick to remind us that they have only been focusing on Latin America for two years, and that in terms of global subscriptions, Latin America accounts for only 140,000 of their one million subscribers.
Dunbar-Johnson believes that there are a wide array of opportunities all over the world, but that Latin America gives The Times ample room to experiment with different approaches to bringing in and monetizing global audiences. The main question behind their efforts to pursue them is this: “Were we to lower the barrier of language, could expose our style of journalism in other markets?” Dunbar-Johnson insists that their strategy is built on a foundation of receptivity to different kinds of content.

The first step in measuring receptivity was to conduct testing to understand whether or not they understood their global audience as well as they suspected they did. This process didn’t find anything very surprising, as “the audience and readers we are after – educated people of a certain demographic – show a lot of similarity in terms of the stories they like: a blend of general interest coverage, enterprise and opinion.”

They did, however, see a difference when it came to opinion pieces, as those tested preferred to read the original piece, in the author’s native language. But lifestyle, stories around recognized brands, enterprise pieces and in-depth pieces scored highly, which was “gratifying, because it goes straight to the heart of The Times’s journalism,” says Dunbar-Johnson.

“We Don’t Pretend to Have All the Answers”

Providing strong, objective journalistic content to a region with many idiosyncrasies will be no easy task, especially given the fact that in many Latin American countries, journalism is often inextricably linked to politics. The truth is often hidden in vested motives and clouded judgment, and what’s more, Latin Americans are understandably wary of outsiders opining on their state of affairs. Dunbar-Johnson believes that this could play to The Times’s advantage, as many will be looking elsewhere for comprehensive coverage of their countries’ current events.

Dunbar-Johnson also highlighted the importance of “a sense of confidence in the quality of translations,” and reiterated that they work particularly hard to make sure that their team achieves the right “nuance” through their translations.

But Dunbar-Johnson was careful to emphasize the fact that this is long-term project, saying, “we don’t pretend to have all the answers.” The goal has always been to launch “in an agile and flexible way that could be scaled over time,” with a focus on “the right context mix in the product.”

They expect that as they grow their audiences, they will start to learn more about them, how to engage them and make The Times “relevant to them as non-Americans.” With such a plethora of tools for reaching people, smartphones in particular, this is no easy task, and Dunbar-Johnson knows this means that The Times must “deliver in ways that we never imagined.”

Marinate, Engage, Monetize

While driving traffic to the site from Latin America will be a plus, the ultimate goal is to turn that traffic into increased subscribers.

Dunbar Johnson points to the fair amount of trade affinity between Latin America and the United States as well as US-Hispanic audiences as possible factors that could increase Spanish-language subscribers. But ultimately, Dunbar-Johnson is confident that  “marinating” people in The Times’s style of journalism will draw them in enough so that they can be engaged and then monetized.

Attracting advertising will also play a key role in monetization, as well as a “long-term process of driving audiences,” Dunbar-Johnson’s team is “not seeking to drive subscriptions today or tomorrow or in a few months,” as “it’s more about learning about the audience so we can curate better experiences and drive subscriptions.”

Luckily, testing has proven that readers outside of the United States have similar profiles to those of American readers: “urban, educated professionals that tend to spend more time looking at news, often on devices,” than most people. They “tend to travel, work for multinational organizations, and they want to be connected to what’s happening around them in their own and other cities.”

Adaptable, ready to learn, and in no rush to figure it all out, Dunbar-Johnson and his team appear ready to take on this behemoth of a region.

What: The New York Times has launched a Spanish-language Web site to expand its reach in Spanish-speaking markets.The web site will include articles translated from English into Spanish as well as content from a team of journalists in Mexico City.
Why it matters: But for a few print editions inserted in Latin American newspapers, the New York Times had not made major digital forays into the Spanish-speaking world. It will be interesting to see if the new product gets traction, particularly in the U.S. Hispanic market.

photo by Scott Beale

In 2012 we reported about the launch of the Portuguese, mostly Brazil targeted digital edition of the New York Times. At the time, Times executive noted that a Spanish-language edition was 5 to 10 years away. Well, only four years later, the New York Times has launched a Spanish-language Web site, a new platform for expanding its scoop in the Spanish-speaking market. The site is free and the bet is to grow the business via digital advertising sales.

Most of the content of the new edition of the Spanish-language edition is originally written in English by New York Times Latin American correspondent and translated to Spanish.In addition, The New York Times en Español( nytimes.com/es), which launched on Feb. 8 and in time for Pope Francis’ visit to Mexico, is supported by a team of Latin American journalists based in Mexico City. In addition, the site will incorporate the work of Times correspondents in Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina and Miami. It will be optimized for mobile browsing.

The New York Times en Español is supported by a team of Latin American journalists based in Mexico City.

As Times’ digital subscribers keep growing (around 1.1 million,) the newspaper aims to increase digital subscribers to boost digital revenue, which stood at US$400 million in 2014. Even though so far the new Spanish site is free, with the potential for new advertising, the NYT Times could convert some of its users into paid subscribers of nytimes.com.

On its first day, The Spanish – English web site was running a story on the hazardous journey of Central American migrants who try to reach the United States, some articles on the Zika virus from Brazil and on politics in Peru and Venezuela.

The launch of the Spanish-language digital edition also reflects the New York Times objective to increase digital revenue. 

Last Thursday during a call with financial analysts, Dean Baquet, the executive editor of The New York Times Co., noted that “although our digital revenues are growing strongly, we continue to feel the impact of declines in parts of our print business,” he added. “That means the company must continue to carefully manage its costs.”

CHECK OUT Articles on the New York Times and other U.S. Media in Latin America
The New York Times Style Magazine launches in Mexico
How The Washington Post and Other Global Newspapers Are Tackling the LatAm Opportunity
Latin Interactive World: Do Latin Americans read Nytimes.com or The Economist.com?
Latin Digital Media: How the NYT, WSJ and Wapo target the Latin World
How U.S. Media Caters to Global Latin Audiences


A summary of the most exciting recent news in advertising technology in the U.S., U.S.-Hispanic and Latin American markets. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

By Gretchen Gardner.


MARKETING AND ADVERTISING TAKE A STEP TOWARDS INTEGRATION: MediaMath has teamed up with IBM’s Universal Behavior Exchange (UBX) to integrate their products and give marketing professionals the tools they need to create unique consumer experiences. The company behind the TerminalOne Marketing Operating System, MediaMath is thrilled to provide a solution for those that have been waiting patiently for the intregration of marketing and advertising technology.

CONTINUING EDUCATION: MediaMath’s educational branch, The New Marketing Institute, has launched certification courses in Spanish, first in New York City and online, with plans to expand to cities across Latin America soon. The courses will provide training in how to create a campaign, how to formulate an advertising strategy, and how to use and take advantage of advanced optimization tools. Visit the NMI website for more information.

LATIN AMERICAN AD-TECH LEADER E-planning launched AdExpert, a holistic Ad Server and RTB-enabled Ad Exchange for the US online advertising market. The product is free, and works seamlessly on Desktop, Mobile and Video to help publishers manage their campaigns and advertiser relationships.

A MIGHTY DUO: The Atlantic and Univision Digital, the digital division of Univision Communications Inc. (the the No.1 multi-platform digital property for U.S. Hispanics), have teamed up to put together a Spanish-language version of The Atlantic’s successful publication CityLab.com, which covers topics related to urban life like crime, politics, immigration, culture and the environment. It will be called CityLab Latino, will feature original journalistic coverage as well as content modified from CityLab. They are aiming to launch in early 2016 through Univision’s website.


PICTURE PERFECT ADVERTISING: Instagram has announced partnerships with a whopping 41 tech-marketing firms to help grow its advertising services. The company wants to eventually partner with over 100 vendors to better manage ad campaigns, engagement and content marketing. Some recognizable names on the partnership list are Adobe and Salesforce, along with a plethora of smaller firms.

NEVER ONES TO RUN OUT OF IDEAS, the creatives at Nike have put together a plan to begin advertising on The Weather Channel’s mobile app with suggestions on what to wear (or buy!) according to weather conditions. Since Americans are spending 60% of their online time on apps (according to Goldman Sachs), it makes sense that Nike, and many other brands, have shifted their advertising strategies to focus on applications.

BMW NORTH AMERICA has selected The Community as its Hispanic AOR. Trudy Hardy, vice president of marketing at BMW America, says that the choice was made because of The Community’s “unique understanding of our brand.” The Community, which is based out of Miami, will be in charge of developing strategy, creative, production, and custom digital and social solutions as well as brand events.

GERMAN GROUP ADDS TO U.S. VIDEO AND AD-TECH ASSETS.German Media Group RTL is leading a US $15 million Series A investment round in VideoAmp, a screen optimization platform for the TV and video ecosystem. RTL Group’s investment in VideoAmp follows its acquisition of a majority stake in Denver-based video supply-side platform SpotXchange. as well as in YouTube multichannel video network StyleHaul and BroadbandTV and a US$19.4 million investment in programmatic TV tool Clypd.




ARGENTINA MAKES WAVES: On November 10, Imagine Communications, a global provider of advertising and video solutions, signed a channel partner agreement with Pontis Technologies, an engineering, sales, and marketing company based on Argentina. The agreement is part of Imagine Communication’s effort to expand its presence in media and entertainment in both Central and South America.

“PROGRAMATICO LOPEZ” HAS ADVICE FOR YOU! Portada’s new character “Programático López” has put out a Guide on the Latin American Advertising Ecosystem in Spanish.  Download the Guide here!

MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONS: App Nexus announced its purchase of ad tech firm Real Media Latin America (RMLA) from Peter Gervai, a Brazilian entrepreneur who bought it 13 years ago for a million dollars from 24/7 Real Media. While no numbers were given, the company has 40 employees working on projects in Brazil, Mexico and Argentina, and lists Globo, Estadão, Walmart, MercadoLibre and El Universal Mexico among its almost 50 clients.


GLOBAD has officially launched its Media Solutions concept, designed to help clients better plan their digital campaigns. It will be executed by their 34 employees spread between the usual suspects of Argentina, Colombia and Mexico, and will serve their clients in Latin America, Spain and the U.S. Media Solutions will be split between two units: Branding for ad campaigns and Performance for generating engagement between clients and consumers.



What: New York Times Co. has released its Q3 profits beating analysts expectations with Net income  of US$9.42 million( 6 cents a share) comparing to a loss of US$12.5 million, or 8 cents, a year earlier.
Why it matters: Print ad revenue fell 1 %( better than the 12.8% decline in the second quarter). Interestingly digital advertising declined by 5%. However, the company expects digital ad sales to post a year-over-year increase again in the fourth quarter.

finals_400x400New York Times Co. third-quarter profits have beaten analysts’ expectations as the publisher had its biggest increase in digital subscribers in three years.

Key results:

  • Ad revenue fell 2.1% in the quarter, weakened by digital ad sales that dropped 5 %, a major shift from the 14% gain in the second quarter)
  • Print ad revenue fell 1 %( better than the 12.8% decline in the second quarter)
  • Circulation sales gained 1.1%, a bit higher than in the most recent quarter
    Earnings were 9 cents a share (comparing with the 6-cent average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg)
  • Revenue rose about 1% from the quarter a year earlier, to US$367.4 million(Analysts had projected US$364.7 million)
  • Operating expenses declined 7.6%, mostly because of savings on outside printing costs and distribution
  • Net income was of US$9.42 million, or 6 cents a share, compared with a loss of US$12.5 million, or 8 cents, a year earlier.

Digital boost

descargaIn addition, the company suggested digital ad sales will post a year-over-year increase again in the fourth quarter.

Lately, the company has been trying to appeal more digital subscribers and sell online-marketing messages.The newspaper is actually planning to double its digital revenue to US$800 million by 2020 by increasing the number of paid online readers and drawing more young and international subscribers.
Moreover, the company added 51,000 digital subscribers, its biggest quarterly addition since the fourth quarter of 2012. Online subscribers now total to 1 million.

The NYT is planning to double its digital revenue to US$800 million by 2020 by increasing the number of paid online readers and drawing more young and international subscribers.

The Times has also teamed up with Facebook, Google and Apple to upload stories more quickly and reach readers on smartphones.

“It was our best advertising quarter of the year, year-over-year, despite a decline in digital advertising revenue, with better performance in print. We remain bullish about our digital advertising business and expect it to return to growth in the fourth quarter,” said New York Times Co. President-CEO Mark Thompson in a statement.

What: The Wall Street Journal is rolling out “What’s News,”its first mobile-only product , a paid  news app.The projects is aimed to support subscribers migrating to digital platforms.
Why it matters: Digital platforms are becoming popular among publishers who want to reach readers on mobile devices.Just like the WSJ, the New York Times is also turning to digital to counterpart print revenues downward trends. Not only for advertising but also for paid subscriptions. According to a recent WAN-IFRA report circulation revenues (print and digital) topped advertising revenues  for the first time for newspapers worldwide in 2014.

wsj_savedThe Wall Street Journal is rolling out its first mobile-only product, a paid, digest-style news app that consolidates digital and reconfigures its newsroom through staff buyouts.

The app, called “What’s News“, will be produced by a team of journalists and offered as an add-on for subscribers.

The new app is aimed to support its almost 2.2 million subscribers’ loyalty, out of which at least 700,000 are digital-only subscribers,as the Journal marches toward a goal of 3 million paying customers by 2017.The Apphas been described as a scan of the day’s most important news stories broken down for readers on the go. They also said it’s being talked up internally as a key component of the Journal’s digital strategy.

The new app is aimed to support its almost 2.2 million subscribers’ loyalty, out of which at least 700,000 are digital-only subscribers

Digest format

Digital is becoming popular among publishers who want to reach readers on mobile devices, where there’s a race to monetize audiences that access headlines thorugh their smartphones.

Apple has also released a new mobile news app  to give users a mix of stories from different publications. The New York Times already has “NYT Now,”a  news app that it is trying to scale as an advertiser-supported product after the app failed as a paid offering. Yahoo’s News Digest has gained popularity as a twice-daily blast of  stories as a morning and evening newspaper.

News Corp.,WSJ parent company, expects the new digital projects to help diminished print revenues, which have suffered an industry-wide downward trend as readers and advertisers are turning to digital platforms. Journal advertising revenues were down 11 percent in the third quarter of 2015, which included a 9-percent decline in the news and information segment that encompasses the Journal.

WSJ is expected to pump more newsroom resources into mobile initiatives like What’s News in the coming fiscal year, which begins in July.

Timothy Martell, executive director of the Indepenent Association of Publishers’ Employees, a union that represents 477 U.S.-based members of the roughly 1,800-person combined global newsroom of the Journal and Dow Jones’ Newswires, noted that there have lately been several dozen involuntary cuts outside of the newsroom. Layoffs are possible within the newsroom if the buyouts do not achieve management’s desired cost efficiency.

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Univision Communications Inc. has appointed Mark Lopez, Google’s former head of Hispanic audience sales, executive vice president and general manager, Univision Digital to continue with the company’s digital expansion.

H2jv8m_d_400x400descargaUnivision Communications Inc. has appointed Mark Lopez executive vice president and general manager, Univision Digital, effective May 1. He will be based in Miami and report to Isaac Lee, president of news and digital for UCI and CEO of Fusion.

In his new role, Lopez will lead business responsibilities for Univision Digital across platforms, working closely with Univision’s established sales, product, technology, and content teams. He will also be responsible for ensuring that Univision continues to be a profitable digital business and develops new sources of revenue and innovative multiplatform experiences and opportunities, including entering the native advertising market, expected to grow substanciaally in 2015.

Lopez is Google’s former head of U.S. Hispanic audience sales . He was responsible for developing and growing Google’s U.S. Hispanic media business.Prior to that, he was chief operating officer of Terra Networks U.S.A., a post he held from 2007 to 2010. Between 2004 and 2007, Lopez was a publisher at AOL Latino, in charge of all U.S. Hispanic advertising revenue, trade marketing and business development.He began his career as a senior consultant at Mercer Management Consulting and Andersen Consulting.He has a bachelor’s degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and an MBA from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.

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