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According to Comscore, Impremedia’s digital properties, along with Univision and Telemundo, have by far the most audience among Spanish-language news publishers in the U.S. Portada talked to Iván Adaime about opportunities in Spanish’-language publishing in the U.S., programmatic ad sales, SEO, social and more.

 

 Iván Adaime Discloses Impremedia’s Secret

“Not a single news publisher —U.S. based or foreign-based— has more digital Spanish-language audience in the country than Impremedia, Telemundo or Univision,” Iván Adaime, CEO of Impremedia, tells Portada.

Having and monetizing owned-and-operated digital properties has its advantages versus the offerings of advertising networks and other intermediaries in the ad market. According to Adaime, “a publisher like us has an audience of its own. It’s an engaged audience that we reach by creating unique content that appeals to the U.S. Hispanic population. Being a publisher also gives you the ability to create custom content for advertisers and distribute it at scale. An ad network, on the other hand, is just a collection of unconnected foreign-based websites that you can buy directly using any programmatic channel, so its unique value proposition is, unlike in the past, becoming less appealing.”

Content is the main reason behind the 50% year-over-year growth of Impremedia’s audience in the last few years. “The main reason is our content. That’s the key investment on our end. Then you would have to add a clean and fast user experience to the mix. We do not use any interstitial and intrusive ads for example. Finally, we pay close attention to data and analytics. ”

Being a publisher gives you also the ability to create custom content for advertisers and distribute it at scale.

 

Programmatic: the Main Source of Digital Revenues

Ivan Adaime
Impremedia CEO Iván Adaime

If you have an audience at scale and the right ad quality metrics like viewability, programmatic is great. Actually, it is our main source of digital revenues”, Iván Adaime notes. With that said, Adaime still sees an opportunity for direct sales as there are a lot of clients that still prefer to do it this way, and some advertising categories that do not transact well in programmatic.

 

Spanish-Language Publishing is the Largest Opportunity

Impremedia produces content in Spanish for U.S. based audiences because this is where it sees the most opportunity as it is an underserved audience. “We see a bigger opportunity with content in Spanish. We haven’t seen the model ‘English with cultural nuances’ working at scale.”

 

Spanish-Language SEO in the U.S.

As a publisher of Spanish-language content in the U.S, how does Impremedia navigate the SEO space? Is there less competition than for English-language keywords both in terms of SEO and SEM? According to Iván Adaime, search engine optimization is something that he pays close attention to. “There are very few US-based publishers but there’s plenty of competition coming from foreign publishers. We do not do any SEM because we do not pay for traffic. We only invest in creating quality content.”

 

Social: 2 Million Fans and 300,000 Newsletter Subscribers

Impremedia has close to 2 million fans on social media, who are a good source of the company’s traffic. Iván Adaime notes that Impremedia “does not pay to acquire fans, nor do we pay to promote our stories in those platforms. We only invest in creating the type of quality content that attracts our target audience. Newsletters are also a product that we pay a lot of attention to. We have over 300,000 subscribers that are actively engaged.”

 

Mitú, a mlti-channel YouTube network targeting the LatinX consumer has been sold to Latido Networks. How much did Latido pay after investors poured more than US $50 million into Mitú over the last 8 years? What is the rational for the acquisition? And what does the transaction say about the growing LatinX advertising market?

1. To whom was Mitú sold to?

The company that has bought Mitú is a relative newcomer to the media sector: Latido Networks is  a multiplatform media company that creates content for LatinX millennial and Gen Z viewers, it owns the Latin music-focused YouTube multi-channel network VidaPrimo, and recently acquired a minority stake in the double digits in podcast company reVolver Podcasts. GoDigital Media Group — Latido’s parent in audio also owns the indie label Cinq Music, digital rights management company AdShare, and digital supply chain company ContentBridge. After the acquisition, Mitú will coexist alongside Latido Networks — the company’s media division that comprises a 24-hour connected TV channel called Latido Music.

2. What is the price of the transaction?

Sources at Latido did not want to disclose the price of the acquisition. However, its a safe bet to say that this has been a fire sale that provides Mitú a lifeline of sorts. Mitú has had difficulties finding profitability over the last years, in fact there are reports that it had been failing to pay YouTubers that were part of its multi-channel network their earnings as far back as last August and September, although creators now tell that payments have restarted in recent weeks. Multi-channel networks were very hot from the early years to the mid years of the last decade (e.g. Warner Media’s acquisition of Otter TV for US $ 1 billion and Verizon acquiring Awesomeness TV in 2016 for US$ 650 million). However, these companies were able to scale at a rate Mitú has not been able to.

3. What is the rationale for Mitú’s sale?

“It’s very much a “zipper” concept, meaning they provide much of what our other brands (most specifically Latido) were seeking to build, and we have the infrastructure and media impressions that will help Mitú get even more out of its brand reach”, a source at Latido Media tells Portada. Mitú has an engaged audience in the U.S., in English, a strong sales and sales support team. Latido has a Spanish-speaking audience that skews towards Latin America, (not U.S.), wide media distribution particularly in connected TV and global content production. Un-deduplicated audience numbers are 16 million U.S. monthly for Mitú, while Latido and Vida Primo YouTube network have more than 25 million in the U.S.

4. How much money did investors put to work in Mitu since 2012?

More than US $50 million. The high growth rate of the online video (advertising) market has been luring investors for the last decade. also in the multicultural space. In 2012, MItú got funding from a group of investors led by the Chernin Group.Then in November 2018, the company got an additional US$ 10 million in new funding led by San Francisco-based LEAP Global Partners along with participation from prior investors including Upfront Ventures. Previously, Mitú had raised $42 million from investors including Upfront, Comcast, WPP, Verizon Ventures, AMC Networks, Chernin Group and Awesomeness (now owned by Viacom).

5. How large is the LatinX Digital Advertising Market?

“Media companies simply cannot be relevant going forward without a strong foundation in the United States LatinX community,” Jason Peterson, the CEO of GoDigital Media Group — Latido’s parent company — said in the press release which announced the acquisition. Portada estimates,  that digital advertising in English-language media targeting Hispanics (predominantly the LatinX market) rose to US $1.07 billion in 2019. Approximately 80% of that amount is sold by Google and Facebook, leaving approximately  US $210 million for the other players. The changing profile of the identity of U.S. Hispanics is reflected in the evolving structure of advertising expenditures (check out our recent Insights Report-How brands engage U.S. Hispanics: New segmentation approaches),  digital advertising in English-language media targeting Hispanics is growing at a high rate,  while advertising in Spanish-language media is decreasing at a higher rate than overall advertising targeting Hispanics.

Last week, the Justice Department finally approved the T-Mobile and Sprint merger. The combined company spent more than U.S. $2.7 billion in advertising in 2019 and will certainly take new marketing decisions. This will impact vendors (media, agency, sponsorship and other marketing service providers) who support the telco giant with marketing strategy, planning, and execution.  An analysis by Portada’s editorial team: 5 thinks you need to know…. 

1. T-Mobile and Sprint Merger = One of the Three Telco Juggernauts  

After the T-Mobile and Sprint merger, the new company now is officially one of the three U.S. telco giants. The merged entity will manage around 100 million direct customers  (excluding  wholesale users), around the same level as Verizon (116 million) and AT&T (93 million). Retail store wise , T-Mobile-Sprint has approximately 9,300 stores (Sprint 4,000 and T-Mobile has more than 5,300 stores.)

… Competition (Need for Marketing) Continues to be Huge…

AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile-Sprint will very likely face a fourth major player: Dish. Part of the reason why the DOJ (Department of Justice) approved the merger is that Dish may be able to join AT&T, Verizon and Sprint as a fourth player, therefore increasing competition (and marketing dollars). The DOJ, in seeking to create a viable fourth wireless carrier, insisted Dish be allowed to sell a 50 percent stake to strategic investors as long as they do not include T-Mobile and Sprint rivals like AT&T, Verizon or cable companies including Comcast, sources explained. As importantly, the DOJ approved the T-Mobile-Sprint merger, because Dish, recently bought Sprint prepaid brands Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile.

… Currently: US $2.7 Billion in Advertising Expenditures

Both Sprint and T-Mobile spent approximately US $2.7 billion in advertising together in 2019, according to their annual reports. In 2019, T-Mobile U.S. spent approximately US$ 1.6 billion on advertising, while Sprint expenses totaled $1.1 billion, $1.3 billion, and $1.1 billion for each of the years ended March 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017, respectively. (Competitors Verizon and AT&T spent US $ 2.64 billion and US $3.52 billion in advertising last year.)
With US $8.56 billion, Telco was the third largest ad-category after retail and automotive (Statista). The U.S. telecom industry was expected to increase its digital ad spending by 16.2% to $13.45 billion in 2019. (E-Marketer). In 2018,  AT&T was the second-largest U.S. advertiser, Verizon the 10th largest with T-Mobile (23) and Sprint (39).

2. Sponsorships: Expansion of Sponsorship Portfolio with Emphasis on Local Properties

Sports and entertainment event sponsorships are another extremely important channel for telco marketers. In 2017, AT&T spent between US $195 and US $200 million in sports and entertainment sponsorships, according to sponsorship.com. Similarly, Verizon spent between US $160 and US $165 million, and T-Mobile between US $50-55 million. Sprint did not make it to the top 50 sponsorship investors in 2017. While Sprint was a 2019 Super Bowl advertiser, it did not advertise in the last Super Bowl two weeks ago. T-Mobile did with its spot promoting its nationwide 5-G network (see below).

Portfolio Expansion with stronger local ties
We expect the combined company to expand its sponsorship portfolio (Major League Baseball, T-Mobile Arena, American Music Awards, etc.) with ties to local properties in new and underperforming markets.

3. Marketing Growth Drivers: 5G, Retention and Enterprise

T-Mobile, unlike Sprint,  has excelled at adding new subscribers to its network. Mike Sievert, President and Chief Operating Officer at T-Mobile, said during the company’s Q4 2019  earnings call that T-Mobile not only added a million postpaid phone net adds, leading the industry significantly, but 1.9 million total net customers joined the Un-carrier movement in Q4. “That makes 27 quarters in a row we’ve had more than 1 million total net customer adds per quarter,” Sievert stated.
Where does the combined T-Mobile-Sprint see growth (and the need to allocate marketing dollars) going forward? Here are three areas:

Customer Retention Marketing
North America will reach 313 million mobile subscribers in 2020 or an 84% penetration. With many subscribers owning more than one connected device, the total number of connections will be higher, at 585 million by 2020. With the saturation of the subscriber mobile market, customer retention (and retention marketing) will be crucial for operators P&L. The way customers are retained will become more and more important and will no will no longer be primarily through simply offering telecom services but instead via combining those with non-telecom services and third-party offers.

Growth Driver: Entering the Enterprise Market
T-Mobile share of the enterprise market is below 6%. It’s improved distribution footprint coverage will provide significant opportunity to penetrate the enterprise market. Expect increases in B2B marketing and advertising dollars.

5G: Mobile competes with home broadband
Albeit still developing, customers with a 600 MHz 5G capable device will be able to access T-Mobile’s nationwide 5G network. It will be marketed as a premium service based on increased speeds. This will open opportunities for T-Mobile-Sprint to take on the home broadband (cable) market in 2020.

4. Sprint and T-Mobile Brands: Which brand(s) will survive?

T-Mobile brands
The vast majority of T-Mobile subscribers are served by the main brand: T-Mobile.  MetroPCS —now Metro by T-Mobile—, still operates as a secondary prepaid brand. (In 2013 T-Mobile announced an expansion of its newly acquired Metro PCS to 15 markets, some of them heavily populated by Hispanics in Texas and California.)

Sprint brands Boost Mobile and Virgin (both sold to Dish)
Sprint prepaid brands Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile were sold to satellite TV provider Dish Network to facilitate the acquisition from a DOJ perspective (see above). Dish paid US $$1.4 billion to acquire Sprint’s Boost and Virgin Mobile prepaid services, with a combined total of around 9 milion customers.

The new brand will “lean pink”
It’s is very likely that “T-Mobile” will emerge as the unified overall brand. Already according to the April 29, 2018 merger announcement, it seemed most likely that the combined company will lean pink (per T-Mobile’s branding), given that it will keep the “T-Mobile” name. Like its network, the Sprint brand probably will be folded into T-Mobile’s in coming years.

5. Media Agencies: Consolidation likely.  Who Will Win, Who Will Lose?

Sprint: Horizon Media/Droga 5/In-house
In May 2017 Sprint Corp. moved its (at the time) US$700 million media account from Publicis Groupe’s Mediavest Spark to independent media agency Horizon Media, Although it later took some of its media duties in-house. Droga 5 is Sprint’s Agency of Record.

T-Mobile: WPP’s Essence/In-house
Similarly, T-Mobile, took “some key responsibilities” related to its media strategy, search and analytics in-house and formed a new partnership with WPP’s Essence to help.

Consolidation: In-house increase likely with external support
With T-Mobile increasing its in-house capabilities and the company’s overall view of the crucial importance of first party data management and protection, it is likely that T-Mobile will build out its in-house media planning buying capabilities but still lean on an agency partner for expertise and execution support.  Will it be Horizon Media, Essence or someone else? Honestly, we don’t know yet…

Multicultural marketing may be officially dead (or more important than ever), but one thing is certain: smart marketers focus on culture. Three things they know and you should too…

Smart Marketers Keep Culture on the Front Burner
J. Walker Smith, Chief Knowledge Officer, Brand & Marketing, Kantar

Sometimes people have the view that with enough data you can target anyone effectively, thereby removing the need to appeal to the audience’s culture. How can we continue to recognize the importance of culture in this technology-driven age?  “Culture influences commerce.  There is a recurring tendency among business leaders to take culture for granted.  But culture is embedded in everything, and thus when culture changes everything is affected,” J. Walker Smith, Chief Knowledge Officer, Brand & Marketing at Kantar Consulting tells Portada.
“Culture is how people live.  Technology is simply a tool people use to engage with culture.  Technology is not unimportant.  It’s just not the context of life that is the root source of aspirations, expectations, and values.  That’s culture.”

 Periods of change are when culture gets noticed most, but it never goes away.  The smartest marketers keep culture on the front burner.  Lagging marketers ignore culture, so they are always behind change and new opportunities.

3 Things Brand Marketers Who Focus on Culture Know About

“Periods of change are when culture gets noticed most, but it never goes away.  The smartest marketers keep culture on the front burner.  Lagging marketers ignore culture, so they are always behind change and new opportunities, ” Kantar’s  J.Walker Smith adds.
Savvy marketers who focus on culture make sure to take into account the below three key considerations.

1. It’s Decision Science (Not Data Science)

Smart marketers who keep culture as a key priority know that ultimately data insights are there to base decisions on. That is why it is crucial that data scientists work in close coordination with brand marketing decision makers (who ultimately have the budgeting power.)

2. Marketers who Keep Culture on the Front Burner Run a Business Unit (NOT a Center of Excellence)

Data teams and cultural intelligence teams need to be embedded into the overall marketing organization. They should not act as consultants who have no real decision-making power (e.g. the Hispanic Centers of Excellence that some companies have set up are commendable initiatives but often don’t impact real marketing decision-making). The best is to integrate cultural insights into overall data analysis and marketing decision-making. For example, Curacao, a department chain store with locations in California, Nevada and Arizona which ranks among the top 100 electronics and appliance retailers in the U.S., makes sure to take  into consideration cultural insights as part of the whole marketing mix. Curacao has a team of data scientists that look at purchasing behavior and take into account culture by looking at consumers in the following way:
– Spanish-dominant
– Bilingual – Hispanic
– English-General Market

Another alternative to make sure that data insights and marketing budgets are aligned is by creating a business unit. Pepsi created a Hispanic Business unit in 2018 (a move somewhat contrary to overall U.S. marketing trends).  Esperanza Teasdale, VP & General Manager at PepsiCo’s Hispanic Business Unit, tells Portada, that her Hispanic business unit independently determines strategy , commercial tactics and, most importantly has a dedicated advertising and marketing budget. Teasdale is responsible for the overall Hispanic strategy, engagement and sales for the Hispanic business within Pepsi North America Beverages.

Smart Marketers Keep Culture on the Front Burner
Esperanza Teasdale, VP & General Manager, PepsiCo’s Hispanic Business Unit

We also have our own data team, which is responsible for analyzing the Hispanic business today. That is how we measure performance. Another part of the team analyzes consumer insights. E.g. segmentation. Their worked helped to provide a perspective of Hispanics that goes beyond years in the country and language and is more in the mindset of  the target, ” Teasdale adds.  This helped Pepsi to come up with “Es lo que quiero“, the Hispanic adaptation of the recently released tag “That’s what I like”.

Marketers in the Portada Council System voted for the topic “Why data scientists need to be culturally sensitive; A brand marketer’s perspective”  as the keynote topic for the upcoming Portada Los Angeles, April 2 conference. The topic selection highlights how important it is for brand decision makers understand the cultural implications of the data insights process.

 

3. Marketers who Focus on Culture Check Data Quality (DMP’s and DSPs)

The smartest marketers who keep culture on the front burner also know that data quality is key, particularly when it comes to cultural insights. Data management platforms (e.g. Blue Kai, LiveRamp and others) and demand side providers do not always provide solutions that capture cultural nuances. “For DSP’s and DMPs to have data on particular consumer targets, they need to identify and code them separately. Only this way you can get information/insights back,” an industry insider tells Portada. The issue is that DMP’s and DSP’s often don’t do that extra mile, because they are not paid to do it.

DMP’s and DSP’s often don’t to that extra mile, because they are not paid to do it.

Americans’ interest in soccer both as active participants in soccer matches as well as in fandom is growing at a high rate. Therefore, the brand marketing community is taking notice and considering more soccer sponsorships. What is the best strategy for marketers to engage with the Hispanic population through the soccer passion point? International leagues and clubs such as LigaMX, English Premier League and La Liga are alluring propositions. Here’s why.

 

A 2018 Gallup poll shows soccer ranks second in popularity only surpassed by football among the coveted 18-34 demographic. Soccer ties with basketball at 11% and is ahead of baseball at 6%. Undoubtedly, soccer, including beach soccer, is a substantial alternative for brands to reach out to this coveted population segment. These are two reasons why European and Mexican soccer sponsorships can be viable alternatives.

1. High Name Recognition of European Clubs and Stars

Lionel Messi – Photo Property of Futbol Club Barcelona

The high name recognition of European clubs among U.S. audiences, and even more among U.S. Hispanic audiences, explains why brand marketers prefer these marketing platforms over MLS. Thus, more American brands are closing soccer sponsorships with clubs including Futbol Club Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester United, Juventus and Bayern Munich. Moreover, the fact that global soccer stars like Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are household names makes maximizes opportunities.

Partnering with European Leagues can be alluring to major U.S. consumer brands. As an example, LaLiga North America  —a joint venture between LaLiga, Spain’s top-soccer league, and Relevent Sports Group- recently partnered with Allstate for Soñando con LaLiga, which details the experience and progress of the best 17 players from the Allstate Sueño Alianza National Showcase while they traveled to Spain and competed against LaLiga academies and in front of LaLiga coaches and scouts. (Check out the partnership of Paris Saint German with Nike subsidiary Air Jordan.)

2. LigaMX Soccer Sponsorships Speak Closer to Hispanic Consumers than MLS

The Mexican LigaMX can be a much better soccer marketing vehicle to engage U.S. Hispanics than the MLS, Nick Kelly, Head of U.S. Sports Marketing at Anheuser-Busch, said at last fall’s Portada New York conference. The fact that 70% of Hispanics are of Mexican origin explains the high popularity of the Mexican National Team and LigaMX clubs (e.g. América, Guadalajara, Toluca, and Cruz Azul) among U.S. Hispanics.

soccer sponsorships expert
Nick Kelly

All our world cup campaigns were about the Mexican National Team (not the U.S. National Team)”, said Nick Kelly, a member of Portada’s Sports Marketing Board. Anheuser-Busch partners with the LigaMX particularly for soccer sponsorships and activations in the Southwestern U.S., an area with a very large Hispanic population. In particular, he mentioned Texas, Arizona and Nevada, as well as cities like Houston, Dallas, and surprisingly, Nashville.

Toyota is another company that is betting on Mexican soccer for its Hispanic outreach. Tyler McBride, Engagement and Events Marketing Manager at Toyota Motor North America, told Portada that he is partnering with Club America because they are the top club and most successful team in North America. The team is recognized internationally with a storied history and winning tradition in Mexico’s Liga MX and they are the most-watched soccer league in the United States. “Our partnership with Club America allows us to engage with Liga MX fans year-round across multiple touchpoints,” he said.

Featured image by Vienna Reyes on Unsplash

 

In the era of technology, the winner is the one who adapts faster. Thus, clients are moving their programmatic ad buying in house, as well as looking for media services in big consultancy firms such as Accenture. This results in a need for tech knowledge in ad media agencies who are  facing challenges to remain relevant. Learn how Portada Council System’s leading brand marketers and agency executives offer solutions to better adapt to an increasingly demanding technological landscape. 

 

Kick-Off Facts

need for tech knowledge

  • About 30% of marketers were unsatisfied with their agency model in 2018. (Movidiam)
  • Nearly 80% of the brands that are members of the U.S. Association of National Advertisers (ANA) have some form of in-house agency, almost double since 2008. (ANA)
  • In 2019, the purchase of creative ad agency Droga5 by Accenture meant adding a creative muscle not normally associated with giant consulting firms. Additionally, WPP announced that it would not participate in pitches audited by Accenture.

Check out the previous Brand Marketer Challenge here: Social Media’s Evolving Role, 4 Opportunities for Travel and Lifestyle Marketers 

Three Tech-Knowledge Challenges According to Portada Council System Members

1. Focusing on Digital Lower-Funnel Can Hurt Traditional Brand Buiding

Related comment: “Consultancies and MarTech companies are mostly involved with lower-funnel conversion, but what happens if nothing comes in the lower funnel? Focus on digital to the exclusion of traditional media which may have a more brand building, higher-funnel role in messaging.”

This is just another fad in the industry. Media agencies have a much more unified approach to marketing and media than consultancies.

2. Finding the Right Talent Isn’t Easy

Related comment: “One way to boost talent and knowledge is by encouraging companies to move from vertical structures to demand cells (sales, marketing, supply, development, etc) so that they can evolve to multifunctional teams instead of verticalities.”

There’s too much technology, too many tools that no one knows how to handle.

3. Leadership is Too Far Above

Related comment: “Managers often give instructions from corporate without much real knowledge of the market.”

Many times, senior executives at agencies have a lot of theoretical knowledge they haven’t really put in practice.

If you are interested in joining the Portada Council System, our year-round knowledge sharing and networking platform, find out more here or contact us here if you are marketing services supplier and here if you are a brand marketer.

Two Tech Knowledge Opportunities identified by Portada Council System Members

1. Agencies Have Often More Cultural Knowledge than MarTech Companies

Related comment: “Firms with no cultural knowledge can affect messaging to multicultural segments. There is a need for cultural identifiers.”

Brands that market ‘in culture’ are more successful. Consultancies are often not able to take this into account.

2. Advertisers Have the Opportunity to Influence Talent Selection

Related comment: “Some clients are more prepared than the agency ‘experts'”

Practical example: A famous multinational company changed to a new agency and made sure to be able to influence payrolls, positions, objectives, etc.

It’s not about tecnology, but about knowledge.

 

If you are interested in joining the Portada Council System, our year-round knowledge-sharing and networking platform, find out more here or contact us here if you are marketing services supplier and here if you are a brand marketer.

The fate of multicultural marketing is a hot-button topic, with some saying it’s officially “dead” and others arguing that it should be more important today than ever. As minority ethnic groups shaped the evolution of the U.S. population in recent years, multicultural marketing became a hot topic in every corporate marketing department. Smart brands started to invest significant effort in strategies to reach ethnic groups with distinct cultural and ethnic behaviors and values. Best practices emerged, but marketers often stumbled and struggled to get it right. 

Today there is a wide range of views on multicultural marketing among industry leaders. Here, we look at a range of perspectives on how brands can form genuine, long-lasting connections with diverse audiences.

Ethnic minorities playing an increasingly important role in U.S. demographics

Between 2000 and 2010, the U.S. Hispanic population grew by 43%, or four times the growth rate of the total population, according to the Census Bureau. And they’re not slowing down – the U.S. Hispanic population is expected to double in the next 40 years. In 2020, the country’s population of 17-years-old’s and under will come from a minority background for the first time.

In fact, diverse ethnic groups are so significant to the makeup of the U.S. population that the Census Bureau recently launched a $500 million marketing campaign in 13 different languages aimed at reaching multicultural audiences. For the first census to go digital, the U.S. government is making a massive effort to reach 99% of the population. In today’s America, that requires significant effort to reach niche ethnic audiences.

While this year’s census is sure to provide important insight on population trends, the government predicted that by 2020, U.S. Hispanics will make up 29 percent of the growth in real income and are expected to add more than $1.3 trillion in buying power. Despite all this, multicultural ad spend only makes up 5% of marketing budgets today.

America’s shifting population sparks debate over multicultural marketing

Latinx, Asian and African American populations now have a combined population of 130 million, making up almost half of the population. With the massive growth of these demographics came a shift in the marketing world. The big question was this: How do cultural differences among ethnic groups shape different lifestyles, preferences, and values? And how can marketers better target these different groups with tailored products, messaging, and campaigns?

Multicultural marketing became both a buzzword and a real concept: Entire departments and agencies dedicated to targeting diverse audiences emerged. But as ethnic minorities become the new “majority” in the United States, some have argued that the term is obsolete.

After all, if such a significant slice of the American population is multicultural, then what exactly is the general market if not a mix of diverse cultures? Some marketers have begun to argue that in a “minority-majority” country, treating different cultural groups as separate from the general market no longer made sense. Today, the fate of multicultural marketing is a hot-button topic in the industry, with some saying it’s officially “dead” and others arguing that it should be more important today than ever.

Some marketers have begun to argue that in a “minority-majority” country, treating different cultural groups as separate from the general market no longer made sense.

Minorities don’t believe they are being represented in ads

Brands’ failure to reach diverse audiences is reflected in the attitudes of minorities themselves. A recent study by Adobe found that nearly three in four whites (74 percent) believe their race/ethnicity is represented in the ads they are served, compared to 26 percent of blacks and only 10 percent of Hispanic/Latinos.

Some argue that multicultural is the new general market

Those that argue that multicultural marketing is dead focus on the fact that there are now so many ethnic minorities shaping the U.S. population that they have become the new general market. They argue that treating ethnic minorities like distinct audiences reflects an attitude that pits assimilation against multiculturalism and provokes cultural boundaries instead of inclusion.

This attitude would imply that diversity and multicultural departments, multicultural agencies, and segmentation by ethnicity are all unnecessary. At the same time, it would lead to new approaches to marketing that look at the general market with an appreciation for how cultural forces and fusions shape trends and consumer behavior. Concepts like cross-cultural and poly–cultural marketing are emerging. Some find this exciting, not discouraging.

Diversity and Inclusion important, but not the same as multicultural marketing

Given the country’s ongoing demographic evolution, backlash against multicultural marketing is surprising to some. Many veteran marketers have issued a warning to those who minimize the importance of multicultural marketing. To them, a “minority-majority” America offers smart marketers enormous opportunities for growth.

Despite the growth and purchasing power of multicultural populations, corporate America tends to look for blanket approaches to addressing diversity. There has been a recent increase in the number of “Diversity and Inclusion” programs in corporate offices. This is an important effort that is effective in creating an inclusive space for diverse voices in the workplace, but it is not the same as maintaining multicultural marketing practices.

Corporate brands need multicultural marketing departments because representing diversity in the office through “Diversity and Inclusion” programs is not the same thing as investing in strategic initiatives to better market to multicultural audiences. The former looks inward to shape corporate and workplace culture, and the latter looks outward to grow business.

U.S. Hispanic identity tied strongly to culture of origin

According to a study by Kantar Consulting, 92% of Hispanics believe that it feels natural to live in the U.S. and connect to its culture but  retain the culture of their country of origin.  57% of Hispanics believe that the Spanish language is more important to them today than it was just five years ago. And 62% of younger Hispanics – the ones who feel particularly unrepresented in the market – reported becoming more interested in the Spanish language. Brands looking to connect with emotions and themes that truly connect with Hispanic audiences should look to their cultural roots for sources of inspiration.

Smart brands are turning to multicultural to reinvigorate, strengthen image

Some marketers have identified and built strategies around these opportunities. Large brands across the country are betting big on multicultural to transform their brands and, in turn, lead to significant growth.

Denny’s “See You At Denny’s” Campaign

Fast-food chain Denny’s is one example. The brand is looking to target young, multicultural diners with their campaign “See You at Denny’s,” which focused on illustrating a diverse, relaxed, and comfortable brand.

John Dillon, Chief Brand Officer at Denny’s, explained to Forbes: “It was important for us to tell our story to multiple audiences and to make sure we’re speaking to the cultural nuances of African-American consumers and Hispanic consumers, as well as the total market. Working with these three agencies executes those nuances and allows us to share who we are as a brand and the inclusivity and diversity that we stand for. We are a family brand and always have been and we are recognizing that the American family has evolved.”

Procter & Gamble is also betting big on multicultural after discovering that they record top performance among African American and Hispanic consumers in market share. Marc Pritchard, P&G’s chief brand officer, told the audience at the Association of National Advertisers’ (ANA) 2019 Multicultural Marketing & Diversity Conference that if P&G’s brands could match their general-market performance with multicultural audiences. “The size of the prize is big – up to $1 billion in extra sales just by achieving market shares equal to the national average on all of our brands,” Pritchard said.

Whatever your view on multicultural marketing, inaction is irresponsible

While reasonable marketers can disagree about multicultural marketing, all comprehensive marketing strategies must account for today’s increasingly diverse population. Whether you adopt the “minority majority” attitude, focus on cultural fusion, or embrace segmented targeting, successful marketing means recognizing and elevating a wide range of voices and cultures.

The podcast advertising market is becoming a force to be reckoned with. In fact, marketers are projected to spend over US $1 billion by 2021 according to the IAB and PwC. One recent transaction in the podcast M&A space caught our eye: the strategic investments in reVOLVER Podcasts by Latido Music.

 

Latido Music Partners Up with reVOLVER Podcasts

Latido MusicA source at Latido Music, a digital platform for Latin music fans, has told Portada that “for now, it is a minority stake in the double digits, but we are both optimistic about reVolver’s long-term success and ambitious, so you can draw your own conclusions.”

For now, it is a minority stake in the double digits.

The source adds that this was a strategic investment in every sense of the word. “We see reVolver as having a leadership position in its segment, and we like that its consumer base overlaps substantially with that of Latido Music.”

As with most target audiences in the digital age, the digital media industry for Latinx is very fractionalized. That is why, according to the source, ” a strategic investment in reVolver is something of a ‘horizontal integration’ strategy. We try to capture a greater mind share of this important audience across devices and content types, rather than trying to own the entire value chain of a single content type – which in this day and age is effectively impossible anyway.”

 

Graduated Investment

The amount of the investment has to remain undisclosed. However, the source adds: “that it is a graduated investment, meaning our stake in the company will grow over time.”

 

Check out previous Insider columns

Insider: Snackable Content, Multicultural as Something Organic, Amazon Ad Sales and More…

 

 

Shopping habits on and offline, brand loyalty, and mobile technology on fire this 2020! A summary of the most relevant consumer insight research. If you’re trying to keep up with the latest happenings, this is your one-stop-shop. Check out the previous consumer insights roundup here.

 

  • According to a new consumer survey from TD Bank, millennials made nearly four major purchases in the past year on average. In comparison, Gen Xers and Baby Boomers averaged 2.8 major purchases combined. Millennials not only spend more, but they are also more thoughtful about their purchases. According to the survey results, they spend more time, on average, researching major purchases than any other group. Compared to baby boomers and Gen Xers, millennials are also more likely to research products through a retailer’s website, social media, and third-party websites. Also, they’re more likely (39%) to research financing options than their elders (22%).

 

  • The 2020 Deloitte Global Automotive Survey, which questioned more than 35,000 consumers in 20 countries, found U.S. consumers are not very enthusiastic about paying for automotive technology. For instance, 60% of U.S. consumers are unwilling to pay more than $500 for advanced safety technology. In a similar way, 66% of surveyed Americans said they wouldn’t pay for advanced connectivity, 75% for infotainment, 58% for autonomy, and 54% for alternative engine solutions.

 

  • Valassis has released the findings from a study conducted with Kantar, which surveyed 1,000 U.S. consumers about their shopping habits. The study, The Future of How People Shop, found that 68% of consumers believe they have become better equipped to make informed purchase decisions compared with five years ago. Thus, 60% of consumers often research products online before making a purchase, and 62% said they closely read product labels. Many of them also rely on advertising, as 43% of consumers said targeted advertising should be able to guide them through the store to locate products.

 

  • Research by Soti, published by Mobile Marketer, has found that mobile technology is important for better retail experiences. More than three fourths (78%) of U.S. consumers said retailers that implement mobile technology for both shoppers and store employees enable a faster shopping experience. Almost half (45%) of shoppers said they prefer sales associates to use mobile devices for checkout on the sales floor rather than heading to the traditional cash register. In addition, Soti’s data shows 53% of consumers use credit and debit cards, while 23% prefer cash and only 11% use mobile payment apps.

 

  • According to a Criteo study which surveyed over 1,000 U.S. consumers, 73% of shoppers are willing to try new brands they have heard positive things about. Discounts and offers often drive consumers who decide to check out a new brand, agree 93% of respondents. Criteo found 57% of U.S. shoppers rely on apps to look at products and get ideas, 55% use them to check out ratings and reviews, and 58% to make purchases. Overall, Criteo found 52% of shoppers look forward to shopping in stores when they have time. On the other hand, 41% enjoy shopping in stores to understand what’s in style or new, and 37% prefer to do as much online shopping as possible.

 

 

According to our just-released survey “What Brand Marketers Need from MarTech in 2020″, advertising technologies for audiovisual media (Addressable TV, Video, Digital Audio and Display, and Programmatic) are the main investments items for the brand marketing community in 2020.

On average, marketing technology now accounts for almost one-third of marketing budgets. Marketers will increase their investment in marketing technology by 27% over the next four years, spending more than US $122 billion on marketing tech by 2022 according to Gartner Research.

The Portada Survey What Brand Marketers Need from MarTech in 2020″ sheds light on the structure of the growth of MarTech expenditures. Based on a poll of 100 brand marketers who are members of the Portada Council System, conducted in the fourth quarter of 2019, Addressable TV, Video, Display and Programmatic, and Digital Audio are pre-eminent investment areas in 2020. They are included in the overall category of Advertising & Promotion, which was chosen as the main overall MarTech expenditure priority by more than 56% of the surveyed brand marketers (see table below).

Top MarTech Investment Categories in 2020

CategoriesInvestment priority in %
TOTAL100%
Advertising & Promotion56.76%
Customer experience10.81%
Social & Relationships13.51%
Commerce & Sales10.81%
Data8.11%
Source: Portada Survey "What Brand Marketers Need from MarTech in 2020"

Contents of “What Brand Marketers Need from MarTech in 2020” 

1. Background: MarTech’s Relentless Rise

2. Main MarTech Expenditure Types per Category in the Survey

3. Survey Results: Brands are Planning to Invest in the Following MarTech Categories in 2020

  • Within Advertising & Promotion, Ad-Tech for Audiovisual Media Plays a Crucial Role
  • Customer Experience: Optimization & Personalization & Testing Leads
  • Social & Relationships. Brands are planning to invest in the following sub-categories of marketing technologies during 2020:
    • Commerce & Sales: Social Media Related Expenditures Lead
    • Data: investment Focus lies on Audience Marketing & Attribution

4.1. Brand/Media Buying Agencies

4.2. Advertising & Promotions: Marketing Budget Weighted Outcome

4.3. Advertising & Promotions: Marketing Budget Weighted Outcome 

Get the Survey

If you are a brand marketer, please click here.

If you are a Marketing Services Supplier, please click here.

Snackable content opportunities, Gonzalo del Fa’s 2020 goal of making multicultural something organic across agencies/clients and more intelligence about what is going on in marketing and media right now. And Portada’s take on it.

Brands looking for Snackable Content Opportunities in 2020 (TikTok and Quibi)

We recently published a piece on the main opportunities and challenges for 2020  according to members of  of the Portada Council System. These opps and challenges include Marketing in a world with a smaller Facebook, Advertising in a divisive political environment and Cross-screen measurement. Here another opportunity as seen by a senior brand marketing executive interviewed by Portada: “With our attention spans becoming shorter and shorter, I think the biggest marketing opportunities that I would like to explore in 2020 are TikTok and Quibi. I think snackable content is the direction that we are moving in, be it 60 seconds or 7-10 minutes. I hope to explore branded content partnerships & product placements on these two platforms in the near future and will be challenged to figure out what success looks like on these platforms.”

I think snackable content is the direction that we are moving in, be it 60 seconds or 7-10 minutes.

An Organic Integration of Multicultural into Brand Marketing Decision Making

Gonzalo del Fa, GroupM“My main goal for 2020 is to make of multicultural something organic across all agencies and clients”, Gonzalo del Fa, president of GroupM Multicultural tells Portada. Del Fa, and his New Majority Ready™ Coalition, hit the topic on the spot. Multicultural marketing should lie at the very heart of Corporate America because the population of the U.S. is predominantly multicultural. This fact should also be reflected in how multicultural marketing opportunities are incorporated into brand marketing decision making. To “make multicultural something organic” means to make decision makers at corporate marketing departments and agency media buying units aware of the opportunity and integrate its discussion organically into brand marketing decision making. (Multicultural) marketing will only work when data analysts and marketing executives with budget decision making power work together in the same business unit (for an example check out Pepsi).

My main goal for 2020 is to make of multicultural something organic across all agencies and clients.

Amazon’s Expanding Ad Sales Team

The more consumers use Amazon’s platform, the more advertisers are willing to place ads on Amazon Advertising’s network. The “other revenue” line in Amazon’s P&L amounted to almost US $3.6 billion and grew by 45% in the third quarter of 2019. The majority of that revenue are advertising revenues. Not surprisingly Amazon is beefing up its ad sales teams. Also in multicultural; Fabio Brunelli  was just appointed as Head of Multicultural Ad Sales U.S. for Amazon.

Peacock

With most broadcast companies loosing linear TV advertising revenues in the order of 10%-20%  annually,  no wonder that Comcast’s NBC is betting heavily (a US $2  billion investment spread over 2020 and 2021) on its streaming platform Peacock. Contrary to many of its competitors in the crowded streaming service market, Peacock is mostly an advertising revenue bet.  Matt Strauss, Chairman Peacock and NBC Universal, says that measurables for the new streaming service are driven in three ways: Active accounts (accounts streaming each month); Engagement (hours watched per account); and ARPU (Average Revenue per User). NBC expects to have between 30 to 35 million subscribers by 2024. By 2024, NBCU expects to break even with an ARPU of $6-7 (mostly advertising revenue based), revenue of US $2.5 billion per year. Comparatively, Hulu generates $10 per sub on advertising today, Strauss notes.

Sorrell’s Non-Traditional Marketing Bet S4 Capital Now Includes Circus Marketing

S4 Capital, the Martin Sorrell backed holding company recently acquired Mexico City-based digital content agency Circus Marketing. Circus will continue to have a presence in the U.S. through its Santa Monica, Los Angeles office, a Circus executive tells Portada. S4 Capital is merging Circus into MediaMonks, the Dutch digital production company which also has a strong presence in Latin America.  The common thread of all S4 Capital acquisitions is that “none are traditional marketing entities, rather, they’re very digital at their core, whether that be related to production, creative, marketing, programmatic or data,”  Jay Pattisall, a principal analyst at Forrester, told AdExchanger.

Pepsi announced an integration with Telemundo’s, through which it will become the first-ever beverage sponsor of La Voz, the Spanish-language edition of NBC’s  “The Voice.” As the show’s first-ever beverage sponsor and prizing partner, Pepsi will take the season two stage by storm, celebrating Latin music and the talented phenoms giving everything to become the next big musical superstar. The premiere episode of season two of “La Voz” is set to air this Sunday, January 19th.

 

Esperanza Teasdale
Esperanza Teasdale, VP & General Manager, PepsiCo’s Hispanic Business Unit

The new investment reflects Pepsi’s Hispanic Business Unit commitment to Hispanic Marketing and to “elevate the voice of the Hispanic consumer”, Esperanza Teasdale, VP & General Manager at PepsiCo’s Hispanic Business Unit , tells Portada. “The La Voz sponsorship, which taps into the Pepsi brand’s rich heritage in music and entertainment, allows us to celebrate Hispanic culture and passion points and support the next generation of talented musicians who aren’t afraid to live life their way and chase their musical dreams,” Teasdale adds.

The campaign is focused on Fusionistas who celebrate both the Hispanic and overall American culture.

Pepsi will level up the season two “La Voz”  prize, bringing the original $100k grand prize up to an epic $200K.  The integration will span the blind auditions, battle rounds and live performances.  It will feature cups branded with Pepsi in the coaches’ chairs and include Pepsi branding across a number of touchpoints:  multi-screen  presence throughout the season, in-show and out-of-show custom activations on linear and social and prominent thematic storylines woven throughout the season.

La Voz Sponsorship with the Fusionistas Target in Mind

Teasdale, a half Ecuadorean and half Colombian executive, notes that “Pepsi understands the passion point that Hispanics have with music. It’s in their DNA.” She adds that the campaign is focused on Fusionistas who celebrate both the Hispanic and overall American culture.”

 

“Eso es lo que quiero”

The integration will also bring to life and feature the newest U.S. Pepsi campaign tagline, “That’s What I Like” (“Es Lo Que Quiero”).  Launched earlier this month, the new tagline is the brand’s first in two decades and is inspired by the most loyal Pepsi drinkers, who proudly like what they like and live their lives out loud without worrying about what others will think – whether that’s belting out a song at karaoke, clapping at the end of a movie, or simply enjoying a Pepsi.

Pepsi unveiled five new national commercials to launch the new tagline, three of which were developed in partnership with the Pepsi brand’s Hispanic agency, Alma (“DJ BBQ,” “Subway,” and “Lavandería).  The new ads spotlight various everyday people getting lost in a moment and finding themselves dancing in unexpected places or situations, despite the amused gaze of onlookers.  Each spot is underpinned by a variety of upbeat music spanning hip-hop, dance hall, Latin pop tracks and more. The spots will air across English and Spanish-speaking properties to reach the brand’s ever-growing fusionista fans, Latinos celebrating and blending their Hispanic and U.S. cultures.

In March 2019 the D2C site AugustMcGregor was launched as a partnership between Irish UFC champion Conor McGregor and custom clothier David August. The men’s wear label offers modern suits designed to appeal to Millennials who want to follow the fighter’s confident sartorial style. Conor Mc Gregor’s Celebrity Marketing appeal and huge social media following in the MMA area gives the e-commerce site the opportunity to become an online fashion retail juggernaut. We talked to Michael Montanez,  director of marketing at August McGregor, about what moves the sales needle at the site. 

The Purpose  

Make luxury fashion more accessible to a broader audience.

A Product suited for Celebrity Branding

August McGregor (AM) is a 100% DNVB (digitally native vertical brand). “A small offering of premium fight related wear has worked very well with core consumer base who are Connor followers”, says Montanez, who oversees all marketing and operations for the site.  Later AM introduced casual shirts, dress shirts, sweatshirts, joggers and suits.

An ideal Target for Celebrity Marketers

Male Milennial that are making well under US $100,000.   McGregor’s audience is price sensitive.  “For August McGregor, it’s a genuine affinity for all things Conor McGregor, “Montanez notes.

The Site

AugustMcGregor.com
AugustMcGregor.com site

The site is built on BigCommerce. Most of the theme is intact, except for some enhancements/modifications for checkout, UX matters. The site offers alternate checkout methods through PayPal, Apple Pay and Amazon Pay to better accommodate the mobile-first customer base, and the use of global shipping solution EasyShip enables the brand to reach its international demand with ease. On average, the site experiences close to 100k uv/mo. Revenue is growing at a compound monthly growth rate of 24%.

The Following

Connor McGregor has more than 35 million social followers on social media. Just on Instagram,  with more than 33 million followers, McGregor has almost double the number of Instagram fans as the next MMA fighter Khabib Nurmagomodov and nearly eight times the number of third-place Jon Jones. At the end of 2019, the August McGregor site itself (@AugustMcGregor) had the below social follower numbers.
(Facebook; 11,000 , Twitter: 12,000, Instagram 411,000).

Celebrity Marketing, Not Influencer Marketing

Montanez does not really see McGregor as a typical social media influencer because, for him,  Influencer Marketing is more about a wide reach of social influencers activating the brand through various partners. “At AM everything is spearheaded through McGregor and his efforts, there is no intermediary component in the sense of traditional influencer marketing as Conor is the principal player. McGregor is used to drive traffic. Its a tactical deployment of a personality driven brand.

What Moves the Sales Needle?

“We are constantly looking at how to increase our key performance Indicators.  Conversions are improving month over month,” Montanez notes. Through ongoing tests they saw that increased volume sets up a lower price point. “We look at bounce, where exactly the consumer is jumping, how much are they consuming, how much are they converting. We’ve run a number of tests and have a good idea of what drives volume and what’s compelling to the consumer. There’s so much more to explore with CX/UX, but development is costly and in our infancy, we’re having to be responsible with spend and priorities. We notice a slight lag in decision making, but typically the conversion occurs within a week,” McGregor concludes.

Attribution

“At the moment, we track leads and bundle influencer reach with attributed sales from social. We keep tabs on this through Google Analytics  and the backend of the ecommerce platforms,” Montanez notes. “As a fashion brand, Instagram is the primary social channel that drives engagement and conversion. It’s no surprise that it contributes 53% of social revenue and has the lowest bounce rate compared to the other platforms”. Montanez is eager to  up weight Facebook and Youtube in the new year to capitalize on in-channel shopping and video branding respectively.”

. As a fashion brand, Instagram is the primary social channel that drives engagement and conversion. It’s no surprise that it contributes 53% of social revenue and has the lowest bounce rate.

Celebrity Marketing Anchored Mix

“It’s a very modest spend to build the case for increased spending. Right now, it’s more of an organic, slow build. Our digital mix is mostly made up of retargeting, paid, display and email. We’re about to launch new channels like affiliate and Google shopping in Q1. Other than that, we heavily rely on Conor to drive the traffic of his engaged audience and through that effort, we have multiple referral sites that help promote.
Montanez adds that PR will be a big driver for acquisition in 2020. In 2020, AM “will  be increasing its efforts working with younger, rookies in sports – not just MMA, but major sports, i.e. NFL, NBA.” AM will not be  paying for influencer marketing as the cost of merchandise for seeding is expensive, “so we’re working with individuals who genuinely have an interest with the brand and affinity with Conor and his passion.”

AI is on the way to transforming the marketing world as we speak. While it is still in its nascent stage, it offers marketers a wealth of tools for leveraging data about customers to understand their preferences and journey with your products.

More importantly, it allows brands to keep up with customers’ increasingly high standards and expectations. Customers want their interactions with brands to feel personal and relevant, and AI enables a level of targeting and tracking that any marketer should get excited about.

But distinguishing between what can be implemented now and what will be possible in the near future is important, as the field of AI is in constant evolution. Here, we break down the different ways marketers can use AI to streamline operations, deliver better customer experiences and channel data into insight.

Defining AI

 AI can be defined as a subset of computer science through which machines display “intelligence” by making predictions and decisions. AI acquires intelligence based on the analysis of data sets, a process enabled by algorithms that tell the machine how to complete tasks and interpret information.

The most basic form of this is machine learning, which uses historical data to predict future outcomes. As the machine acquires more data, it becomes better at making predictions.

AI already driving marketing budgets, data-driven insights

Recent studies reveal the important role that AI plays in driving marketing budgets and business growth strategies. Marketers clearly believe that AI is a valuable tool: 72% of marketers surveyed in a PWC study view AI as a “business advantage.” By 2021, organizations are projected to spend $57 billion on AI platforms for marketing.

AI marketing
AI in Marketing

And organizations are already seeing the results of implementing AI: 3 of 4 companies using AI have reported a boost in sales of at least 10%. 75% of organizations in another study say AI has driven customer satisfaction by at least 10%.

In terms of how CMOs are currently implementing AI, another recent survey found that many are using it for content personalization (56.5%), predictive analytics (56.5%), and targeting decisions (49.6%).  But those are just a few of the ways AI can support marketing efforts today.

AI has 8 broad applications in marketing today

Marketers are accumulating data at an astonishing pace with the intention of harnessing it into better targeting. But sometimes the mere volume of data that organizations acquire makes it difficult for them to know how to make use of it. AI is incredibly helpful in this respect, as it enables real-time analysis of large volumes of data, automate tasks, and generate insight.

1. Market intelligence and insight:With the help of algorithms, machine learning enables in-depth analysis of complex data sets from data management platforms (DPMs), data warehouses, or other repositories, connecting the dots to support marketing intelligence and forecasting in a way that humans cannot.

2. Customer profiles and personas:Through the analysis of on-site interactions, purchasing history, referral sources and geo-specific behavior, AI can help brands form a 360-view of their customers and match them with personalized content and promotions.

3.Lead generation and sales:Machine learning and predictive analytics can help marketers automate the process of generating and scoring leads. They also help brands keep customers engaged through predicting turn: through analyzing users’ engagements with brands, they can tell when someone is about to drop off. Brands can then attempt to re-engage these users with notifications and emails.

AI Marketing
AI in Marketing

4. Media buying: AI automates the laborious process of media buying and ensuring that ads are seen by relevant audiences through programmatic advertising and optimization and measurement platforms. With almost no human input, AI helps marketers analyze, manage, and measure the performance of ad campaigns.

5. Customer experience: According to Gartner, 85% of customer service inquiries will be handled via AI by the end of 2020. AI is increasingly being implemented in the customer experience space to support improved call centers and automated customer service via chat bots and digital assistants.

6. User experience: AI helps marketers optimize user experience on websites through analyzing data about single users’ behavior to personalize content, promotions, and notifications. A study from Evergage found that 33% of marketers are using AI for more personalized website experiences, and that 63% of them noted increased conversion rates, while 61% assert that customer experiences have improved.

AI Marketing
AI Marketing

7. Natural language generation and content creation: There are a variety of applications for AI in the realm of content. Using simple rules and formats, AI-enabled tools and platforms can author content such as business reports, product descriptions, stock market reports, and sports recaps without human input. Through setting the rules and formats, marketers can dictate the tone and style that the content takes.

AI-enabled content platforms can also make suggestions about what kinds of content formats and topics a brand’s target audience is likely to engage with through tracking users’ online activity.

8. Chatbots: While chatbots technically fall under customer experience, they have changed the marketing world in such a way that they deserve their own dedicated text. AI-enabled bots are successfully delivering customer service for thousands of global brands through natural language processing and machine learning.

Natural language processing allows machines to interpret the meaning of written and spoken speech and respond accordingly, all without human intervention. The machine can track the effectiveness of its responses and adapt accordingly, improving as it has more conversations.

Marketers must self-educate before selecting vendors

Marketers considering ways to implement AI in their organization have to be careful when evaluating different products and platforms. Many use the term “AI” loosely, mislabeling tools that implement data processing and analytics as “AI.”  Smart organizations can bring in experts to educate and advise them as they consider the alternatives.

Ask questions about the data sets they use and pay attention to whether they have data scientists on staff. Request a demo and confirm what deliverables and KPIs will be included in their activities.

Make sure your data is clean and high-quality

 While AI might seem like magic, it still depends on effective human inputs: namely high-quality data that it can learn from. If marketers don’t format data in a way it can be processed, or you do not have the infrastructure to process it correctly, it will not produce an “intelligent” machine.

To this end, marketers must innovate and collect more annotated data that can be tagged to train AI systems. Measuring only clicks is not going to create a rich enough data set to use for impactful AI.

Remember the human touch

AI will be able to replace humans in many, but not all, of the brand interactions customers expect. Consumers are excited about AI – an Acquia study found that 53% of consumers say they are “looking forward to artificial intelligence making interacting with brands a better experience.” At the same time, the study found that 85% percent claim that “a human touch is needed, in addition to technology, for a positive customer experience.”

Marketers should only use AI where it will enhance customer experiences, and it turns out there are plenty of situations in which people prefer to speak to a human than a machine. 75% of the respondents to the Acquia survey agreed that “the problem with automated experiences – interacting with technology instead of a real human – with brands is they are too impersonal.”

The future of AI in marketing depends on smart investments  

Implemented correctly, AI will offer us tools that make our work better, easier, and more enjoyable. Marketers will be able to focus on the strategic, creative elements of their work and leave the tedious and time-consuming tasks to a well-trained machine.

All of this, though, depends on marketers educating themselves so that they can help their organizations invest in smart solutions. As AI evolves at a rapid pace, marketers will face increasing pressure to keep up.a

2020 promises to be an exciting year in marketing. We asked brand and media agency executives that are part of the Portada Council System where they see the main challenges and opportunities.

 

As the new year fast approaches, Portada touched base with brand marketers and media agency executives, members of Portada’s Council System. We asked them what 2020 could bring in terms of challenges and opportunities. Among the most alluring opportunities and/or challenges, they cited: preparing for a world without (or a smaller) Facebook, more proprietary data for brands, efficient cross-screen metrics, marketing in a divisive political scenario, and finding synergies between Hispanic and general marketing campaigns.

 

2020 opportunities: Preparing for a world without (or a smaller) Facebook

2020 opportunities expertMarketers’ reliance on social media as a marketing and lead-generation tool has been parallel to Facebook’s rise to social media heaven. But has the social media giant reached its zenith or, even worse, is it starting to decline? “How to future proof my business in a world without or a smaller Facebook. In performance marketing, Facebook is still king, and also in terms of reach and signals of consumers’ interests and intent. What happens if Facebook changes? Or if there is regulation? Or if it doesn’t enjoy the popularity of generations like Z and beyond? This is more of a longer-term challenge, ” says John Sandoval, Senior Brand and Latino Marketing Manager at Intuit.

How to future proof my business in a world without or a smaller Facebook. In performance marketing, Facebook is still king, and also in terms of reach and signals of consumers’ interests and intent. What happens if Facebook changes? Or if there is regulation? Or if it doesn’t enjoy the popularity of generations like Z and beyond?

 

Brands need more ownable and proprietary data

2020 opportunities expertTo Peter Lee Brown, Brands & Communications Strategy, at Nestle, “Data has become commoditized, brands need more ownable, proprietary data“. Related to this challenge, Brown sees an opportunity for brand marketers in terms of “lean innovation and in-housing capabilities”, as he expects them to “lead to greater speed, creative expertise, and control.”. According to Brown in the current scenario of perpetual disruption, “brands can drive disruption and become challengers.”

Ariela Nerubay, Chief Marketing Officer at Curacao, also cites disruption, in this case in the retail space as an alluring opportunity: “Disruption of the retail in-store experiences to drive traffic to physical stores.”

 

2020 opportunities

If you are interested in joining the Portada Council System, our year-round knowledge-sharing and networking platform, please contact us here if you are marketing services supplier and here if you are a brand marketer.

 

Making second-generation Hispanic campaigns attractive to non-Hispanics…

Successful marketing to the LatinX consumer (second and third-generation Hispanics) is paramount to the progress of Corporate America in 2020 and beyond. Ariela Nerubay, Chief Marketing Officer at Curacao, tells us that “How to develop targeted campaigns for the 2nd and 3rd gen Hispanic on general market media that also attracts non-Hispanics” is one of the main challenges for her company in 2020. Similarly, she also cites developing a “lead generation strategy for Hispanic and non-Hispanic customers with same creative” as a challenge and opportunity.

 

…in a world where it is increasingly “not good” to be the “other”.

Marketing in a politically convoluted environment that is often divisive has been an important topic at Portada Council System workshops in 2019. Going into 2020 it will continue to be a challenge for brand marketers. As Intuit¨s John Sandoval notes “Specifically to multicultural marketing, in a country and increasingly in a world (last week’s UK election) where it is ‘not good’ to be the other or a minority or a population group other than the ‘mainstream’, how do we get the resources, attention, etc, from across the landscape? What if Trump is re-elected for another 4 years?”

 

Cross Screen Measurement to understand Reach and Frequency

The ascent of video marketing, partly a result of the substitution of TV media budgets by video, is bringing in more 2020 opportunities for media buyers. Darcy Bowe, SVP, Media Director, Starcom USA tells Portada that “cross-screen measurement that allows us to understand overall reach and frequency, including understanding where truly incremental reach is being driven” is an important opportunity for efficient media buys in 2020. Bowe is part of Starcom’s Video Center of Excellence, where she focuses on investing in all video media as well as creating content and building integrated programs in the video media space on behalf of her clients.

Given the range of CPMs and creative units across media types, how do we value an impression in each type and how does that impact ROI?

Bowe also notes that, given the range of CPMs and creative units across media types, it will be important to develop solutions for how impressions should be valued in each type and how this impacts ROI. To resolve the relationship between performance and branding (awareness) will be another challenge: “How can we best create media plans that balance targeting the most likely consumer to interact & transact with the brand as well as find broad reach to create awareness?”

We are excited to announce we’ve been working hard in our website features. Stay tuned for our expanded offering of content for brand marketers in 2020, which we’ve outlined below. 

 

Dear Portada Audience Member,

Happy 2020! We have been busy updating our website features. This is part of our ongoing efforts and investment to provide best-in-class content for the brand marketing community and benefit our audience and business partners. Our program includes a complete website revamp, SEO strategy and implementation, expanded use of images, social media amplification as well as paid and earned marketing campaigns.

In coming weeks we will be rolling our expanded content offering for the brand marketing community,, which complements Portada’s year-round knowledge-sharing and networking platform; the Portada Council System and events.

A Whole New Way of Delivering Content for Brand Marketers

Passion Point Marketing News:
The latest content for brand marketers, including the members of Portada’s Sports & Entertainment Marketing Board. How brand marketers are leveraging sports, music and lifestyle content to engage consumers throughout the Americas. What you need to know. Subscribe here!

Innovation: What’s next for Brands:
A holistic cross-industry, cross-discipline approach to effective and authentic marketing driven by innovation. Key insights about how brand marketers, including the members of Portada’s Council System, reap the advantages of technological innovation to unlock ROI. Subscribe here!

Thank you for being part of our engaged audience. Wishing you a wonderful start to 2020!

Realogy’s Karim Amadeo has been promoted to Manager, Multicultural & Growth Market at Realogy Holdings and CENTURY 21. We touched base to learn more about her new position and Realogy’s multicultural marketing strategy. 

 

Karim Amadeo, a Portada Council System member, has recently been promoted from Manager, Hispanic National Hispanic Advertising, Century 21 Real Estate to Manager, Multicultural & Growth Market at Realogy and Century 21. We wanted to know more about this new position, so we sat down with Amadeo to ask her a few questions about this new role and Realogy’s multicultural marketing strategy overall.

Realogy is a publicly listed major provider of residential real estate services in the U.S. Its brands include Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate, CENTURY 21®, Climb Real Estate®, Coldwell Banker®, Coldwell Banker Commercial®, Corcoran®, ERA®, Sotheby’s International Realty® as well as NRT, Cartus®, Title Resource Group and ZapLabs®, an in-house innovation and technology development lab. The company, headquartered in Madison, NJ, operates around the world with approximately 188,600 independent sales agents in the United States and approximately 111,200 independent sales agents in 113 other countries and territories. According to the most recent financial statement, Realogy spent US $202 million in marketing in the first nine months of 2019 versus 199 million during the first nine months of 2018.

Realogy provides independent sales agents access to leading technology, best-in-class marketing and learning programs, and support services to help them become more productive and build stronger businesses. In her expanded role, Amadeo tells Portada, she will be serving all the Realogy brands, while continuing to lead Multicultural National Advertising efforts at Century 21 Real Estate.

Realogy's Karim Amadeo
Realogy’s Karim Amadeo

“As part of my expanded role, I will focus on managing our industry partnerships and increasing our agent and broker engagement efforts,” she commented. “Additionally, I will continue to work with CENTURY 21 on its Empowering Latinas campaign, which launched in 2017 and has awarded more than 100 scholarships to Latinas in Miami and Houston markets, as well as the brand’s collaboration with the Eva Longoria Foundation.”

As part of my expanded role I will focus on managing our industry partnerships and increasing our agent and broker engagement efforts.

Realogy’s Multicultural Objectives

When asked about which in her opinion are the main objectives of Realogy when it comes to the multicultural consumer, Amadeo answers that “Realogy has worked to elevate our engagement throughout the year, and has commenced a three-year Growth Markets strategic plan to leverage the scale of Realogy and better align our internal brand teams. We participate in industry conferences that specifically focus on policies that support a more diverse market.”

In addition, Amadeo explained that executives and affiliates volunteer as speakers to join the conversation and make a positive impact in the real estate industry and in the community in two ways: “First, as a shared service for our different brands, Realogy seeks to attract and retain diverse corporate talent, agents and brokers to mirror or exceed growth market demographics in the communities that we serve. Second,  as end-consumer Realogy focuses on external diversity marketplace efforts by forming partnerships with professional real estate associations whose ongoing missions are to improve diverse homeownership rates, including among the Hispanic, Asian-American, African-American, and LGBT communities.”

Cultural traditions that drive multicultural shopping are also resonating with many mainstream shoppers, which increases return on investment and magnifies the business case for reaching multicultural consumers.

Growth Opportunity

According to Amadeo, “the population growth and the increase in buying power of Hispanic, African-American, Asian, and LGBTQ segments has provided significant growth opportunities for companies that serve the needs of multicultural consumers. Brands that provide a high level of service and support to multicultural consumers are finding success. It’s not about simply having an ad in a different language. Rather, it is about being culturally relevant. We still need to see more ethnic diversity in marketing and media.”

Increased ROI

Amadeo adds that “According to Nielsen, the multicultural consumer is younger than the rest of the population and a trendsetter and taste maker across a broad range of categories, from food and beverage to beauty products.”

Reaching out to this segment has an important potential to increase ROI. As she explains, “Cultural traditions and social aspirations that drive multicultural shopping and product behaviors are also resonating with many mainstream shoppers, which increases return on investment and magnifies the business case for reaching multicultural consumers. Additionally, multicultural consumers have a higher life expectancy, living longer than their White Non-Hispanic counterparts.”

New Lead Generation Programs

Realogy’s overall marketing strategy has recently been strengthened by several lead generation programs, as we could infer from CEO Ryan Schneider’s conference call with financial analysts on November 7. Over the past year, Realogy has launched multiple marketing products, including Listing Concierge and Social Ad Engine to help drive better marketing for its agents.”We are excited to enter 2020 with three new high potential lead generation programs that can provide high quality leads to our agents and franchisees and deliver great value propositions to consumers,” said Schneider.

“In Q3, we launched Exclusive Look, a new marketing product available to all of our 47,000 Coldwell Banker owned brokerage agents share and search new listings before they are available to the broader market via public websites,” he added. “Second, last quarter, we launched TurnKey in collaboration with Amazon, as a new source of lead generation for our agents and franchisees. In Q3, we launched the Realogy Military Rewards program. And more recently we announced an Affinity lead generation program with AARP that will launch in Q1 of 2020.”

Portada Council System members have voted for the topics to be discussed at the three main speaking slots at Portada Los Angeles on April 2, 2020. The topics revolve around data collection with a cultural approach, influencer marketing, and consumer insights. 

 

For over a decade, Portada has been there to offer a space in which experts can discuss the most relevant issues of marketing and advertising. Now, for 2020 we are taking it one step further by inviting brand and agency decision-makers (members of the Portada Council System) to get directly involved in the selection of the content of each of our events.

Consequently, the brand marketers in Portada’s Council System have voted for the topics to be discussed at the three main speaking slots during Portada Los Angeles on April 2, 2020.

“The brand marketers in our Council System play a crucial part in determining the topics of our events. By having these leading practitioners suggest and vote for the themes of the three main speaking slots, we make sure that brand marketing, tech and media executives targeting the diverse U.S. consumer get the most relevant content available in the marketplace,” says Marcos Baer, president of Portada.

Below are the three winning topics as well as comments from Portada Council System members as to why these reflect their interests.

Portada Los Angeles Keynote: Why data scientists need to be cultural experts (A media planner/buyer perspective)

In 2017, the Economist declared data, and no longer oil was the most valuable resource in the world. And even though brands and agencies now have access to tremendous amounts of data, the tricky part is how to make sense of it. For the Portada Los Angeles Keynote talk, Council System members selected the topic of data collection and the extra layer of adding a cultural filter to how that data is processed. Below are the members’ thoughts and questions around the issue.

 

I’d like to hear how data scientists are cutting data to understand audiences and behaviors at the multicultural level. It would be interesting to see how the data changes once you’ve looked at it from a cultural perspective.

Would be interested to hear from data scientists about how they layer in cultural understanding. Is it all done in algorithms or are they also making “manual” choices based on cultural nuances?
Sometimes people have the view that with enough data, you can target anyone effectively, thereby removing the need to appeal to the audience’s culture. How can we continue to recognize the importance of culture in this technology-driven age?

How to combat bias in data, examples of how data can be interpreted in different ways by people who do not understand the culture?

I notice there is a shift where many ethnic or multicultural agencies are moving beyond population subgroups (Hispanic/Latino, Asian, etc) and shifting towards culture. So in a way, culture and being culturally relevant is the latest evolution of multicultural marketing. It would be good to hear how the rigors of data relate to culture or vice versa.

Consumer Insight Highlight Speaking Slot: What creates brand lift?

How to measure brand lift. How to understand the impact of media spend.

This seems fairly obvious, but with so many marketers choosing to focus on attribution and lower-funnel metrics, it’s important to remind ourselves that without a strong brand identity and awareness, the purchase funnel will dry up.
I am especially interested in understanding how can I lift or transform a brand’s reputation and perception online, social listening studies, setting benchmarks, improving engagement based on brand interactions that aren’t necessarily transnational, cause-related marketing and its true impact on brand love and conversion.

 

MarTech Solution Spotlight: Evolving Influencer Marketing

How do you break through the clutter in an age where people are used to influencers pitching product after product?

Which industries, type of messages or cultural moments are influencer moments and which are not?

Understanding how companies evaluate influencer marketing’s impact on their objectives. And also how they think about leveraging influencers.

As media markets are diversified to include more faces and individuals that come and represent specific communities it’d be pertinent to hear more about the process of influencer identification, vetting, and relevancy in the different markets we are trying to influence.

It would be good to understand how this has evolved and what the next platform capabilities are.

Portada Los Angeles 2020 will be a unique experience. First, the three different Council System bespoke workshops will take place in the morning. Also, brand marketers and best-of-breed marketing services suppliers will have 1:1 meetings and attend VIP networking functions. In addition, attendees will learn at four exclusive and highly-curated speaking slots on the themes outlined above, which were voted by the over 100 brand marketers in the Portada Council System.

More information about the structure of speaking slots at Portada events:

  • Keynote: 45-minute session. An overarching topic of paramount importance to the brand marketing community to be addressed by subject matter experts who provide innovative solutions.
  • Consumer Insight Highlight: 25-minute session. Consumer Engagement and sales conversion are the ultimate objectives for brand marketers. This session will provide key and fresh consumer insights that foster the understanding of the U.S consumer and provide actionable tips for marketers.
  • MarTech Solution Spotlight: 25-minute session. Technology plays a crucial role both for consumers as well as an enabler for marketers. During this session a major brand marketing thought leader will reveal the latest trends on the use of technology by consumers and brands.
  • Partner Thought Leadership Presentation. An opportunity for a Portada partner to gain major exposure in front of a listening audience of major brand marketing executives.

For more information about Portada Los Angeles on April 2, 2020 click here