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Voxxi, the site catering to acculturated Latinos that launched in November 2011 backed by investor Dr. Salomon Melgen, has closed. The site was not able to get enough revenues and/or get a new round of financing. It is not being updated but current content is still being monetized via  ad networks. The site’s closure offers interesting lesson for other English-language media targeting acculturated Hispanics, including Fusion. Portada talked to former Voxxi employees. 6 Lessons to be learned.

1. The Audience Was Defined, But it did not Come in Sufficient Amounts

Before its launch in 2011 Voxxi identified its target audience as second and third generation Hispanics between 25 and 49 years old. The assumption was that this audience does not find enough appealing content on mainstream media and needs a more Hispanic version of news, entertainment and other content areas etc. But what happened in practice? Voxxi.com did not obtain the necessary critical mass. In order to be a factor for advertising agencies you need to have at least 1 million unique users.

2. Bilingual and English-dominant Hispanics May not Need Exclusive Media

Former Voxxi employees tell Portada that they got the sense that Hispanics do not necessarily want to have different news sources but rather have the more Hispanic specific content integrated into the content of mainstream media outlets. As U.S. audiences in general get more and more multicultural and multiracial, mainstream media outlets like the The New York Times or Buzzfeed are increasingly catering to Multicultural Millennials. The boundaries between Hispanic targeted media and more general media get blurry. More importantly, for the survival of media properties like Voxxi, is that those boundaries also get blurry to the media buyers who may not see a need to advertise in exclusively Hispanic targeted media. In addition, audiences now consume different types of media sources and within that mix Social Media is crucial. Content like Voxxi’s needs to be perfectly integrated into Social Media, otherwise it is not really easy to access.

In order to be a factor for Ad-Agencies you need to have at least 1 million unique users.

3. Go the “Jose Diaz Balart Way”, Not the “Jorge Ramos Way”

Jose Diaz-Balart
Jose Diaz-Balart

Cuban American Journalist José Díaz-Balart hosts “The Rundown with José Díaz-Balart” on MSNBC, a weekday morning political/news talk show on MSNBC that airs live from 9 am to 11 am. The program integrates Hispanic and Multicultural themes into a much wider content program and audience. The impact of José Díaz-Balart is much bigger than what Jorge Ramos has done in Fusion, where he hosts the Fusion TV English-language program ,America with Jorge Ramos.” While Fusion now understands itself mostly as a media property targeting Multicultural Millennials, it was originally conceived to primarily attract a younger audience of an English-speaking Hispanic and Latino American background. MSNBC’s definition is much broader: American basic cable and satellite channel that provides news coverage and political opinion on current events. In other words, Díaz-Balart introduces the Hispanic vision to a mainstream audience.

4. Good Content is not Enough, You Need Tech

Another lesson, Voxxi’s former employees tell Portada, is that “good content is not enough.” The development of a customized technological platform to distribute and amplify content is crucial too. Cutting edge analytics, provided by a strong platform, are another element. For instance, Buzzfeed provides detailed metrics over content usage that help marketers identify which key content areas they want to align with. “Content is king as long as a strong tech platform is the kings throne.” Another element of the content platform is its relationship with Social Media. In short a successful digital media property nowadays is a mix between a media-content company and a tech company.

Content is king as long as a strong tech platform is the kings throne.

5. Is Facebook the new “frenemy”?

Publishers used to have a “frenemy” relationship with Google, in fact, they still have it. Well, now it seems like Facebook is “privileged” to also have become a “frenemy”. The social media giant is very effectively including content from a myriad of sites that it then monetizes via advertising. These advertising revenues may have been generated by destination sites, like Voxxi, themselves. Although, and that is the big catch, sites like Voxxi would have never gotten the engagement and huge audience figures social media properties including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram get.

6. Hispanic Leaders are not interested enough in supporting Media that reflects the Hispanic Community

Hispanic Associations and their leaders have not yet realized how important it is to support and invest in Multicultural driven Media. Very few of the large media companies (definitely not private equity backed Univision and Comcast owned Telemundo) are in the hands of Hispanics. There does not seem to be much interest of Hispanic leaders to invest in Hispanic targeted media that reflects the interest of the Hispanic community. Examples like Jeff Bezos acquisition of the Washington Post, Facebook Founder Chris Hughes investing in The New Republic or even the Pro-Publica model are almost non-existent in the Hispanic realm.

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What: Univision has debuted  TheFlama.com, an English-language video channel aimed for Hispanics between ages 15 and 30.
Why it matters:This is Univision’s first online attempt to reach this particular millennial set, which increasingly consumes video via smartphones and tablets.Trojan and McDonald’s will be its main sponsor.

BlM7O7gCYAAcvA_Univision has launched TheFlama.com, an English-language video channel with an eye on Hispanics between ages 15 and 30, Ad Week reported. The Condom brand, Trojan, is the cross-programming launch partner and McDonald’s is sponsoring the¨Super Accurate Soccer History¨ show.

The new channel is kicking off with five original programs in all, among which there’s a reality-TV-styled show starring hip-hop artist Becky G that goes live on Wednesday. The programs are expected to last between two and six minutes and will involve episodes rolling out during the next several weeks.

A trio of Super Accurate Soccer History episodes have already gone live while three more will appear on April 21. Trojan will get branding throughout the initiative’s properties, including custom pre-roll for programs like “Abuelita’s Review” and “The Johnny Sanchez Show.” McDonald’s is getting 100 percent share of pre-roll for the show on TheFlama.com and via an exclusive YouTube channel. The shows will also be shown on Vevo, Twitter and Facebook. Bedrocket, a video content house with a “media for the post-cable generation” tagline, helped leading the programming.

The initiative is mainly based on the English-language television channel, Fusion, which Univision premiered last fall along with Disney. This constitutes Univision’s first online attempt to reach this particular millennial set, which increasingly consumes video via smartphones and tablets.

“It’s about digital, short-form and mobile. The programming will [utilize comedic] vernacular used on the Internet,” explained Steven Benanav, general manager for Flama, a new Univision department.

Check out  ¨How To Date a Latina¨ video below:

What: Fusion, Univision-ABC’s new cable network, has announced the brands it will be partnering with.
Why is it important: The importance of English language is beginning to be recognized among advertisers who want to reach Latino millenials. That is a sign of a major cultural change.

Fusion –the news, pop culture and satire network from ABC and Univision– announced today that several of America’s most recognized brands have signed on as launch partners. Allstate, AT&T, Darden, Disney Parks, Johnson & Johnson Consumer, Kay Jewelers, Rayovac -division of Spectrum Brands-, Samsung, and Toyota are among the advertisers partnering with Fusion, which launched in millions of homes nationwide on Monday, October 28.

All of these brands are aware that marketing for Hispanics doesn’t necessarily mean “Spanish-language marketing“. In fact, Fusion is targeting second and third-generation Hispanics in the U.S., young people who do not like to be considered strictly “Latinos”, but who describe themselves as Americans and want to be addressed as such. Besides, actually, as reported by Pew Research, when it comes to news consumption, a growing share of Latinos prefer English. 90% of Latinos ages 18 to 29 who get their news from television do so in English. When it comes to other forms of entertainment, such as television and music, use of English is higher among younger Latinos.

“Fusion is going to provide quality content that is relevant for a young, digital, and diverse America,” said Catherine Sullivan, Senior Vice President of Sales for ABC News and Fusion. “We are delighted that several of America’s most recognized brands have identified Fusion’s programming as a unique opportunity to reach one of the fastest growing audiences in the country.”

“Hispanic millennial consumers are hungry for content that’s not only engaging, but that they also find contextually and culturally relevant on every screen,” said Lia Silkworth, EVP, Managing Director, Tapestry. “We believe Fusion is an innovative new way to reach this consumer.” Tapestry, a division of SMG Multicultural, specializes in connecting brands with emerging market consumers in the United States.

With a unique mix of original reporting and satire programming that is smart and irreverent, Fusion will inform, empower, and inspire viewers by creating dynamic multi-platform conversations around the most resonant issues facing millennials. Millennials are the most diverse generation in America today, with Hispanics representing one in five adults 18-34. Over the course of the next five years this group is expected to eclipse Boomers at $3.39 trillion in spending power.
About Fusion

Fusion is a news, pop culture and satire TV and digital network. It will engage and champion a young, diverse, and inclusive America with a unique mix of smart and irreverent original reporting, lifestyle and comedic content. Fusion launched in millions of households nationwide on October 28, 2013. Six major distributors are carrying the cable network, including Cablevision, Charter, Cox, AT&T U-Verse, Verizon FiOS and Google Fiber. For more information about Fusion visit fusion.net or follow us on Twitter, @ThisIsFusion, and facebook.com/FusionNetwork. Fusion is a joint venture between Univision Communications Inc. and the Disney/ABC Television Network.

About SMG Multicultural
SMG Multicultural is the largest brand communications organization in the U.S. specializing in Hispanic, African-American, Asian-American and emerging market consumers. Within our three brands -Chicago-based Tapestry and Spark Multicultural and New York-based 42 Degrees at MediaVest (MV42)- we offer a portfolio of strategic services that engage consumers in meaningful ways with some of the top brands across the globe. Whether its media planning and buying, communications planning, performance media, digital communications, data and analytics, branded entertainment, gaming or event marketing, our media experts consistently strive to lead and invent within the multicultural space.

What: Fusion, Univision-ABC’s new cable network, has announced the brands it will be partnering with.
Why is it important: The importance of English language is beginning to be recognized among advertisers who want to reach Latino millenials. That is a sign of a major cultural change.

Fusion –the news, pop culture and satire network from ABC and Univision– announced today that several of America’s most recognized brands have signed on as launch partners. Allstate, AT&T, Darden, Disney Parks, Johnson & Johnson Consumer, Kay Jewelers, Rayovac -division of Spectrum Brands-, Samsung, and Toyota are among the advertisers partnering with Fusion, which launched in millions of homes nationwide on Monday, October 28.

All of these brands are aware that marketing for Hispanics doesn’t necessarily mean “Spanish-language marketing“. In fact, Fusion is targeting second and third-generation Hispanics in the U.S., young people who do not like to be considered strictly “Latinos”, but who describe themselves as Americans and want to be addressed as such. Besides, actually, as reported by Pew Research, when it comes to news consumption, a growing share of Latinos prefer English. 90% of Latinos ages 18 to 29 who get their news from television do so in English. When it comes to other forms of entertainment, such as television and music, use of English is higher among younger Latinos.

“Fusion is going to provide quality content that is relevant for a young, digital, and diverse America,” said Catherine Sullivan, Senior Vice President of Sales for ABC News and Fusion. “We are delighted that several of America’s most recognized brands have identified Fusion’s programming as a unique opportunity to reach one of the fastest growing audiences in the country.”

“Hispanic millennial consumers are hungry for content that’s not only engaging, but that they also find contextually and culturally relevant on every screen,” said Lia Silkworth, EVP, Managing Director, Tapestry. “We believe Fusion is an innovative new way to reach this consumer.” Tapestry, a division of SMG Multicultural, specializes in connecting brands with emerging market consumers in the United States.

With a unique mix of original reporting and satire programming that is smart and irreverent, Fusion will inform, empower, and inspire viewers by creating dynamic multi-platform conversations around the most resonant issues facing millennials. Millennials are the most diverse generation in America today, with Hispanics representing one in five adults 18-34. Over the course of the next five years this group is expected to eclipse Boomers at $3.39 trillion in spending power.

What: With an exclusive interview with President Obama, yesterday took place the much anticipated launch of the new Univision-ABC English-language TV channel aimed at young Hispanics, dubbed Fusion.
Why is it important: Fusion attempts to meet younger viewers’ rapidly-changing media consumption habits. Although initially aimed towards second and third-generation Latinos (a segment advertisers are increasingly interested in reaching), this channel, run by the leader in Latin media, will ultimately address a much wider audience, that is, adults under 35 years of age, of all ethnic backgrounds. The buzz generated by this new venture is loud and solid.

Fusion kicked off Monday, October 28, at 6:57 p.m. EST, with a special edition of “America with Jorge Ramos”, featuring an interview with President Barack Obama conducted by ABC News correspondent Jim Avila. This new TV channel will launch initially with a limited distribution, as it will be available in only about 20 million homes (1/5 of the U.S. households with paid TV subscriptions).

According to L.A. Times, Cablevision, Charter Communications and Cox Communications are the cable companies that will carry the new channel –plus, At&T U-Verse, Verizon FiOS and Google Fiber are also involved. ABC will be in charge of distribution, while Univision will be responsible for programming. Both companies have been planning the new channel for more than two years. Fusion’s website is integrated in the Yahoo-ABC News Network.

Although Fusion targets young Hispanics, it will not have a traditional Latino-feel because these younger generations are American and don’t want to be treated as if they were not (“They don’t want to be ghettoized“, says Fusion’s CEO Isaac Lee), that’s why its contents will be in English.

LOS ANGELES TIMESEnglish-language cable TV channel Fusion is designed to appeal to young U.S.-born Latinos who primarily speak English. The initiative, a 50-50 joint venture with Disney/ABC Television, hopes to engage members of the millennial generation, those roughly between the ages of 18 and 34. Colombian-born Isaac Lee (42), Fusion’s recently appointed CEO, said that, since twenty percent of millennials are Latino, while researching the target audience for the new venture they soon saw that the opportunity was not just with Hispanics, but also with millennials. Lee also said that the channel will not try to cover breaking news because most younger viewers learn about big events through Twitter and elsewhere on the Internet.

This is a huge opportunity. Hispanics are young, and the purchasing power of millennials is going to be bigger than baby boomers’ very soon.

–Isaac Lee, president of Univision News and newly-named chief executive officer of Fusion

 

ADAGEFew parts of the media business are growing as quickly as Hispanic media. However, as competitors add their own new channels variously focused on Hispanics, young people and news, where will Fusion fit? The motivation to the network is clear: Hispanic media spending is growing faster than the general market, increasing 11% to $7.9 billion in 2012. TV accounts for most of that spending, at $5.8 billion, but just $246 million goes to Hispanic cable TV networks. Fusion seeks to change that ratio by targeting millennial Hispanics with hard news, news satire, sports and commentary in English. Marc Morse, senior VP-national broadcast at media agency RJ Palmer, said that although Hispanic viewers can be found in other places, marketers who dedicate time and money on programming specifically targeting the Hispanic market have a greater recall.

We are winking at Hispanic, but Fusion is not overtly Hispanic. If you’re not Hispanic, you won’t feel like the network isn’t for you.
–Catherine Sullivan, senior VP-ABC News Sales

 

REUTERSThe target demographic for the new English-language channel is several decades younger than the audiences for CNN, MSNBC and Fox News, which pull in viewers with a median age of 60 or higher, according to media research company Nielsen. The new channel will also test the market for TV news developed for Hispanics, the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population, but delivered in English rather than Spanish. Some of its programming will feature a heavy dose of humor, a bid for viewers who keep up with current events through shows like “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.” Fusion will turn to ABC reporters for news from around the world, and for special events such as election night coverage. The Disney team will handle ad sales and distribution for Fusion, bringing the ability to sell it to cable operators in a package with its popular sports channel, ESPN.

Fusion is hoping to cash in on advertisers’ awareness of the growing purchasing power of Hispanics, estimated to rise to $1.5 trillion by 2015 from $1 trillion in 2010, according to a 2012 study by Nielsen. Advertisers may still take some persuading to break with a long-held tradition of reaching Hispanics in Spanish.

The mantra of Spanish to reach Hispanics is still very strong. A lot of advertisers are afraid of trying to do it in English.
–Arturo Villar, publisher of Hispanic Market Weekly

 

MIAMI HERALDFusion offers a look at the challenges in pursuing Hispanic consumers, perhaps the hottest target in marketing today. The network scrapped the initial Latin identity after focus groups showed young Hispanics were put off by the idea of a television channel centered on their ethnicity, said Isaac Lee, head of news at Univision and CEO of Fusion. Univision’s anchor Jorge Ramos (55) was an obvious choice for Univision’s original concept, but the rest of the line-up captures Fusion’s unconventional approach to news and talk: an animated satire show, comedians taking on sports, a puppet talk show, and an evening program on sex and politics.

Fusion’s broader demographic makes for complicated marketing, since Lee and others say young Hispanics remain their primary target. “Imagine if you are doing archery,” Lee said. “The bull’s-eye, the red dot, is still an Hispanic. But the whole target is not just the red dot.”

The only way to reach [Hispanic millennials] is to provide fantastic content, and to include them.
–Isaac Lee, CEO, Fusion

 

FRANCE 24 (AFP)Fusion touts itself as a channel aimed at “a young, diverse and inclusive America” and said it would offer “a unique mix of smart and irreverent original reporting, lifestyle and comedic content.” Fusion’s CEO Isaac Lee said that over 80 percent of millennials sleep with their phones next to their beds every night because they don’t want to miss a beat, so the new channel will try to respond to their media consumption needs.

We want to be the ones [young Hispanic millennials] wake up with. This beta site will help lay the building blocks as we continue to develop our digital properties.
–Isaac Lee, CEO, Fusion

 

What: With an exclusive interview with President Obama, yesterday took place the much anticipated launch of the new Univision-ABC English-language TV channel aimed at young Hispanics, dubbed Fusion.
Why is it important: Fusion attempts to meet younger viewers’ rapidly-changing media consumption habits. Although initially aimed towards second and third-generation Latinos (a segment advertisers are increasingly interested in reaching), this channel, run by the leader in Latin media, will ultimately address a much wider audience, that is, adults under 35 years of age, of all ethnic backgrounds. The buzz generated by this new venture is loud and solid.

Fusion kicked off Monday, October 28, at 6:57 p.m. EST, with a special edition of  “America with Jorge Ramos”, featuring an interview with President Barack Obama conducted by ABC News correspondent Jim Avila. This new TV channel will launch initially with a limited distribution, as it will be available in only about 20 million homes (1/5 of the U.S. households with paid TV subscriptions).

According to L.A. Times, Cablevision, Charter Communications and Cox Communications are the cable companies that will carry the new channel –plus, At&T U-Verse, Verizon FiOS and Google Fiber are also involved. ABC will be in charge of distribution, while Univision will be responsible for programming. Both companies have been planning the new channel for more than two years. Fusion’s website is integrated in the Yahoo-ABC News Network.

Although Fusion targets young Hispanics, it will not have a traditional Latino-feel because these younger generations are American and don’t want to be treated as if they were not (“They don’t want to be ghettoized“, says Fusion’s CEO Isaac Lee), that’s why its contents will be in English.

LOS ANGELES TIMESEnglish-language cable TV channel Fusion is designed to appeal to young U.S.-born Latinos who primarily speak English. The initiative, a 50-50 joint venture with Disney/ABC Television, hopes to engage members of the millennial generation, those roughly between the ages of 18 and 34. Colombian-born Isaac Lee (42), Fusion’s recently appointed CEO, said that, since twenty percent of millennials are Latino, while researching the target audience for the new venture they soon saw that the opportunity was not just with Hispanics, but also with millennials. Lee also said that the channel will not try to cover breaking news because most younger viewers learn about big events through Twitter and elsewhere on the Internet.

This is a huge opportunity. Hispanics are young, and the purchasing power of millennials is going to be bigger than baby boomers’ very soon.

–Isaac Lee, president of Univision News and newly-named chief executive officer of Fusion

 

ADAGE – Few parts of the media business are growing as quickly as Hispanic media. However, as competitors add their own new channels variously focused on Hispanics, young people and news, where will Fusion fit? The motivation to the network is clear: Hispanic media spending is growing faster than the general market, increasing 11% to $7.9 billion in 2012. TV accounts for most of that spending, at $5.8 billion, but just $246 million goes to Hispanic cable TV networks. Fusion seeks to change that ratio by targeting millennial Hispanics with hard news, news satire, sports and commentary in English. Marc Morse, senior VP-national broadcast at media agency RJ Palmer, said that although Hispanic viewers can be found in other places, marketers who dedicate time and money on programming specifically targeting the Hispanic market have a greater recall.

We are winking at Hispanic, but Fusion is not overtly Hispanic. If you’re not Hispanic, you won’t feel like the network isn’t for you.
–Catherine Sullivan, senior VP-ABC News Sales

 

REUTERSThe target demographic for the new English-language channel is several decades younger than the audiences for CNN, MSNBC and Fox News, which pull in viewers with a median age of 60 or higher, according to media research company Nielsen. The new channel will also test the market for TV news developed for Hispanics, the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population, but delivered in English rather than Spanish. Some of its programming will feature a heavy dose of humor, a bid for viewers who keep up with current events through shows like “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.” Fusion will turn to ABC reporters for news from around the world, and for special events such as election night coverage. The Disney team will handle ad sales and distribution for Fusion, bringing the ability to sell it to cable operators in a package with its popular sports channel, ESPN.

Fusion is hoping to cash in on advertisers’ awareness of the growing purchasing power of Hispanics, estimated to rise to $1.5 trillion by 2015 from $1 trillion in 2010, according to a 2012 study by Nielsen. Advertisers may still take some persuading to break with a long-held tradition of reaching Hispanics in Spanish.

The mantra of Spanish to reach Hispanics is still very strong. A lot of advertisers are afraid of trying to do it in English.
–Arturo Villar, publisher of Hispanic Market Weekly

 

MIAMI HERALD – Fusion offers a look at the challenges in pursuing Hispanic consumers, perhaps the hottest target in marketing today. The network scrapped the initial Latin identity after focus groups showed young Hispanics were put off by the idea of a television channel centered on their ethnicity, said Isaac Lee, head of news at Univision and CEO of Fusion. Univision’s anchor Jorge Ramos (55) was an obvious choice for Univision’s original concept, but the rest of the line-up captures Fusion’s unconventional approach to news and talk: an animated satire show, comedians taking on sports, a puppet talk show, and an evening program on sex and politics.

Fusion’s broader demographic makes for complicated marketing, since Lee and others say young Hispanics remain their primary target. “Imagine if you are doing archery,” Lee said. “The bull’s-eye, the red dot, is still an Hispanic. But the whole target is not just the red dot.”

The only way to reach [Hispanic millennials] is to provide fantastic content, and to include them.
–Isaac Lee, CEO, Fusion

 

FRANCE 24 (AFP) – Fusion touts itself as a channel aimed at “a young, diverse and inclusive America” and said it would offer “a unique mix of smart and irreverent original reporting, lifestyle and comedic content.” Fusion’s CEO Isaac Lee said that over 80 percent of millennials sleep with their phones next to their beds every night because they don’t want to miss a beat, so the new channel will try to respond to their media consumption needs.

We want to be the ones [young Hispanic millennials] wake up with. This beta site will help lay the building blocks as we continue to develop our digital properties.
–Isaac Lee, CEO, Fusion

 

The much anticipated launch of Fusion is today. The  cable channel  joint venture from ABC-Univision will click off with exclusive Interview with President Obama. The new channel will launch in millions of households nationwide. Six of the nation’s biggest cable distributors have already agreed to carry the network, including Cablevision, Charter, Cox, AT&T U-verse, Verizon FiOS and Google Fiber. The jury is still out on whether advertisers will be able to sustain the new network.

Barack ObamaFusion is launching today with an exclusive interview with President Obama airing during a special 7:00 p.m., ET edition of “AMERICA with Jorge Ramos.” . Fusion will launch in millions of households nationwide  as six major distributors have already agreed to carry the cable network including Cablevision, Charter, Cox, AT&T U-Verse, Verizon FiOS and Google Fiber.

Fusion will launch at 6:57 p.m. EST.

Fusion — the news, pop culture, and satire tv and digital network from ABC News and Univision — will launch at 6:57 p.m. EST. The President will speak with Fusion White House Correspondent and ABC News Senior National Correspondent Jim Avila. The interview will take place Monday afternoon at the White House and air first on “AMERICA.” Portions of the interviews will also be highlighted across ABC News and Univision News broadcasts and platforms on Tuesday, October 29.

In addition, Jorge Ramos sits down with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) for their first one-on-one interview. They discuss immigration reform, Cruz’s political future and Obamacare among other topics. Jorge Ramos also traveled to Arizona last month to visit the U.S.-Mexico border. While there he spent time with Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. The first portion of that report will also air on the inaugural edition of “AMERICA.”

Finally, Ramos will speak with Grammy-award winning artist Enrique Iglesias.”AMERICA with Jorge Ramos” airs weeknights at 5:00 and 8:00 p.m., EST on Fusion. Dax Tejera is the senior producer of the broadcast. Fusion is a news, pop culture and satire TV and digital network. It’s goal is  to engage  and champion a young, diverse, and inclusive America with a unique mix of smart and irreverent original reporting, lifestyle, and comedic content

Fusion, the cable channel  joint venture from ABC-Univision, last week announced  it is launching on October 28. The new channel will launch in millions of households nationwide. Six of the nation’s biggest cable distributors have already agreed to carry the network, including Cablevision, Charter, Cox, AT&T U-verse, Verizon FiOS and Google Fiber. When asked by Portada which advertisers are confirmed for the new network, a Fusion spokeswoman said that they “will be announced in the weeks ahead.” Portada’s editorial team tried to answer 5 questions about Fusion’s advertising revenue potential. Here is our take.

Do media buyers and planners realize that reaching the Hispanic population does not necessarily mean to buy Spanish-language media?

1. Are media buyers interested enough in English-language Hispanic media as to sustain Fusion?

FusionThe big question here is whether English-language media targeting Hispanics is currently attracting enough advertising dollars to sustain itself.  To be sure, there is potential: the demographic trends show that the bilingual and English-dominant sectors of the Hispanic population are growing. But are media buyers and planners already in tune with this trend? As market observers tell Portada, often media buyers react confused when told that buying Hispanic media does not necessarily mean “Spanish-language media”. For the success of networks like Fusion, to some extent, it seems that there needs to be a paradigm change in the way media buyers and planners approach the Hispanic market.

2. How have other new media properties targeting English-dominant Hispanics been received?

There are encouraging signs coming from the Hispanic magazine market.  “Most recent magazine launches have targeted English-dominant Hispanics”, says Carlos Pelay, president and founder of research firm  Mediaeconomics. “Last year Cosmopolitan for Latinas launched with 2 issues and has expanded their schedule to 4 issues in 2013.  Glam Belleza for Latinas – a supplement to Glamour magazine – has also launched.  Most of the new activity is targeted at acculturated, English-dominant Latinas as both of these high-profile launches have English-language editorial,” Pelay adds These new magazines have helped to propel the Hispanic magazine sector to its highest first quarter ad  revenue figure ever (US $49.1 million) since MediaEconomics started measuring Hispanic magazines in 2002.

Fusion is the new 800-pound gorilla among English-dominant media targeting Hispanics.

3. Does Fusion face a tough competition from other bilingual and English-dominant media targeting Hispanics?

This is really a David against Goliath situation. Fusion is the new 800-pound gorilla among English-dominant media targeting Hispanics. Fusion even dwarfs  NuvoTV, which recently got a US $40 million cash infusion and announced that Jennifer Lopez would contribute content.   In digital and print media, an increasing number of properties is targeting the English-dominant Hispanic. They include NuvoTV, MTV3rs, the above cited magazines, and web properties such as FoxNewslatino.com, NBCLatino and more niche oriented sites such as  Hispanicallyspeakingnews.com and Voxxi.  Yet, compared to Fusion these entities are much more niche oriented entities and not really competitors to Fusion’s mass market appeal.

4. But the clout of the combined resources of Univision and Disney can help convince marketers to do substantial buys in Fusion, right?

Absolutely. The cross selling opportunities from both Univision’s Hispanic networks and, perhaps more importantly, from Disney’s general market networks ABC and ESPN are huge.  ABC is the third largest TV network among Hispanics before NBC and Fox, and only behind Univision and Telemundo, according to Nielsen. In addition, Disney’s portfolio includes Hispanic sports cable network ESPN Deportes.

5. What about the trend of the ‘Latinization’ of America? Will this trend help Fusion?

Yes, Hispanic trends in fashion, food and music are increasingly being followed and adopted by the general U.S. consumer. Marketing in the U.S. increasingly means Marketing in a Multicultural Nation (as opposed to marketing to specific multicultural audiences).  This trend is reflected in the way Fusion’s content is being planned. “We believe our programs – visually compelling, creatively produced and laced with humor and irreverence – will resonate with Latinos and non-Latinos alike,” Beau Ferrari, acting President for Fusion, said in last week’s announcement. As an example of such programming, Jorge Ramos, the #1 Spanish-language television anchor, and Leon Krauze, one of the most popular local broadcasters in America, will lead Fusion’s primetime news block.  (“Marketing in a Multicultural Nation” will be one of  the main panels at our 7th Annual Hispanic Advertising and Media Conference, in NYC on Sept. 26 Fusion’s very own Joel Kliksberg, Director, Strategy & Business Development  will be one of the panel’s participants. Other panelists  will include Group M’s Gonzalo del Fa and Dunkin’ Donuts Xavier Turpin).

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Alicia Menendez Portraits by Len Spoden PhotographyFusion, the ABC News/Univision joint venture scheduled to launch in December, today announced it has hired Alicia Menendez as anchor.

Menendez, who has been a guest on CNN, Fox News and MSNBC, most recently was host at Internet-based video streaming network HuffPost Live, where she interviewed a range of celebrities and newsmakers, including Eliot Spitzer, John Leguizamo and Dr. Oz.

In a note to staffers, Fusion interim President Beau Ferrrari welcomed Menendez to the team and said she will start in June 17.

This is the most recent announcement by Fusion, which has been staffing up lately, gearing for a December launch.

KimballFusion, the joint Hispanic network from ABC News and Univision, this week made another senior executive hire, appointing Billy Kimball as svp and chief programming officer. He will be based in Miami.

Kimball’s resume includes the production of Comedy Central’s Indecision ’92 and nine Independent Spirit Awards shows. He also wrote several episodes of The Simpsons. He was also the founding executive producer of The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn in 1999 and was EP of The Al Franken Show on Air America Radio and Sundance Channel from 2004-07.

Fusion, the ABC News/Univision joint venture on Wednesday revealed its logo, which was developed by Los Angeles-based design firm Buster in collaboration with brand consultancy Lubin Lawrence and the team at Fusion.

fusionFusion, slated to launch in the second half of 2013 is being positioned as a news and lifestyle cable news network targeting millennials. The company has been adding executives and journalists to its roster, though it yet has to appoint a CEO. Currently, Beau Ferrari is acting as interim President for Fusion and he is also evp of operations for Univision Networks.

The ABC-Univision English-language joint venture will be available at launch in millions of households nationwide.  Five of the nation’s biggest cable distributors have already agreed to carry the network, including Cablevision, Charter, Cox, AT&T U-verse and Google Fiber. Programming will focus on issues most relevant for U.S. Hispanics, including the economy, entertainment, music, food, immigration, pop culture, education, politics, health and wellness.

Recently announced hires include Derrick Ashong (anchor), Berkman, Eric Lieberman (general counsel), Maritza Puello (managing editor, Newscore) and Mariana van Zeller (correspondent).

People change positions, get promoted or move to other companies. Portada is here to tell you about it .

Luis Miranda is stepping down as Director of Hispanic Media  at the White House to return to the private sector as a communications consultant. The White House’s director of Hispanic media with helping to provide access not seen in previous administrations. . The White House expects to fill his post, he said.
Univision Communications Inc.,announced the formation of the Corporate Business Development Group. The new initiative will build on Univision’s growth and generate revenue opportunities by forging new partnerships with companies that recognize the benefits of investing in the Hispanic marketplace.The group will be led by Tonia O’Connor as president, Content Distribution and Corporate Business Development. In addition to these new responsibilities, she will continue to drive Univision’s content distribution efforts.“The creation of this group puts a laser focus on our efforts to expand our outreach to the many non-traditional outlets that now recognize the growth opportunity afforded to them by serving Hispanics,” said Randy Falco, president and CEO of Univision Communications, Inc. “Because of the trust we have built with our audience, we are uniquely positioned to help companies make this important connection.” “Since joining Univision several years ago, Tonia has proven her ability to develop and grow business in her current role as president of Distribution Sales and Marketing,” said Falco.

ABC and Univision’s new Fusion network is creating a Board. Univision’s CEO Cesar Conde told TVNewsCheck. Conde is one of three Univision executives on the six-person board. The others are Isaac Lee, president of Univision News, and Andrew Hobson, senior EVP and CFO of Univision Communications. ABC is represented by Ben Sherwood, president of ABC News; Anne Sweeney, co-chairman, Disney Media Networks and president, Disney/ABC Television Group; and Kevin Mayer, EVP, corporate strategy and business development for Disney. The next big step will be the hiring of a CEO. Conde says the board is interviewing candidates, but he would not name names or hint at when the hire would be made.The next big step will be the hiring of a CEO. Conde says the board is interviewing candidates, but he would not name names or hint at when the hire would be made.

Telemundo 52-KVEA announced today that accomplished and award-winning journalist Edgar Muñoz has joined the station as co-anchor of its 6PM and 11PM Noticiero T52 weeknight newscasts.  He will join current anchor Ana Patricia Candiani. Muñoz, a familiar face to Southern California audiences, brings a vast experience, solid integrity and proven credibility to the station’s daily newscast. Noticiero T52 airs weeknights at 6PM and 11PM on Telemundo 52- KVEA.”With more than 20 years in the news, Edgar Muñoz is an exceptional journalist who will bring to KVEA Telemundo 52 an incredible depth of news experience that includes covering high-profile events around the world,” said Celia Chavez, President and General Manager of Telemundo 52-KVEA Los Angeles. “We are thrilled to welcome him to the station and feel very confident that his deep knowledge and understanding of the U.S. Hispanic audience will be a great asset to our news team.”

The Summit Group Communications is pleased to welcome three new members to its  team. Dan Fletcher, Sandra Gonzales and Amy Birkner are the latest additions to  the firm’s advertising account department at its Salt Lake City  headquarters. “The caliber of our new recruits is a reflection of the  growth of our agency,” said Bill Paulos, founder and CEO of TSG. “The amount of  talent here is nearly palpable it’s so prevalent. TSG’s clients are happier than  they’ve ever been.”Fletcher returns to his home state of Utah after a  number of years in New York City, working most recently with Edelman Digital  where he developed and managed The AXE Voice Program. Before Edelman, Fletcher worked with  VICE Media agency Virtue Worldwide on projects including Intel’s The Creators Project and Dell’s Motherboard and developed the Social Media Strategy for  owned VICE Magazine properties. He got his start in advertising and digital  marketing in the non-profit world, a passion he continues to support through  pro-bono consulting.Gonzales, the agency’s newest advertising account  supervisor, joins TSG with nearly 20 years in the business and skills in  strategy, plan building, working with media and mentoring team members. She also  has expertise with multicultural marketing. While with her former firm, HMC La  Agency, she managed the grassroots strategy and implementation for Zions Bank  Hispanic market for more than nine years, and Intermountain Healthcare Hispanic  campaign “Vive” for more than six years. She holds a bachelor degree in  journalism and communications from Externado de Colombia University in Bogota  Columbia, and a second bachelor degree in business  administration .Birkner joins TSG as an advertising account manager  bringing a variety of high-tech and healthcare marketing related experiences.  Most recently, she worked as a senior marketing manager for Henry Schein  Practice Solutions and prior to that as manager, marketing communications for 3M  Health Information Systems. Birkner graduated with degrees in both English and  American Studies from the University of Mary Washington.