While marketers are certainly aware of the increasing purchasing power of U.S. Hispanics, this complex demographic requires a marketing strategy that recognizes their nuanced behavior, multichannel habits and sophisticated biculturalism. This is even more true during the holidays, when trends in Hispanic shopper preferences and spending patterns are revealed all at once. We talked to Tracy Galindo, an independent consultant who works steadily with Jewel-Osco and Albertsons, and Randy Stockdale, Chief Marketing Officer at multicultural marketing firm Solex Marketing Solutions, about trends in targeting Hispanics during the 2016 holiday season.

At-A-Glance: The Hispanic Shopper

The IRI’s latest HispanicLink study revealed that there are 55 million Hispanics in the U.S. representing 18 percent of the population, with a spending power of $1.5 trillion. The study also revealed that almost 60 percent of Hispanics are Millennials or younger, accounting for 80 percent of segment growth.

And brands are paying attention: Target announced that it is increasing its spending on Spanish-language television ads by 67 percent this year while making an effort to incorporate Hispanics into its general marketing strategy instead of creating a separate Hispanic marketing plan. Target has been called out for careless mistakes in its Hispanic targeting in the recent past: Spanish-speaking Target consumers noticed that “habanero” was spelled “habañero” on one of its Archer Farms brand sauces.

Randy Stockdale, Chief Marketing Officer at Solex who has led teams that have launched well over 15 brands in the US Hispanic market, explains that when he was engaged to re-position a well-known grocery chain whose primary customer base is the Hispanic consumer, the most important objectives “included re-focusing the creative messaging, In-Store Merchandising, and all shopper marketing initiatives.” Other priorities included “integrating all communication plans to include the ever-growing bicultural segment who tends to cross-shop the most.”

Holidays Offer Wide Opportunities to Connect 

The holidays offer brands a particularly unique opportunity to connect with Hispanic consumers, who feel a strong tie to seasonal holiday traditions, often thinking of it as the most important time to connect with family and loved ones through ritual and a celebration of their shared culture.

The ever growing bicultural segment tends to cross-shop the most.

Target will be running ads including “The Toycracker,” starring a young girl named Marisol, and Target’s mascot, Bullseye the dog, with a parade of toys available at the store. Another features a Broadway-style musical and two bilingual actresses, Kylie Cantrall and Isabella Russo.

Target has also announced that it is increasing its overall television spending by 21% during the holidays (it spent $9.1 million on Spanish-language and $100 million total on total market television ads in 2015).

Consultant to Jewel-Osco/Albertsons and owner of a small business
Consultant to Jewel-Osco/Albertsons and owner of a small business

But the months leading up to the holidays are also key, as they are used to develop strategies for the year to come. “November is not only a great time to analyze all the happenings of 2016, but to truly hone in on ideal timeframes, themes, stores, and brand partnerships for 2017,” said Tracy Galindo, a consultant to Jewel-Osco/Albertsons and owner of a small business.

For Jewel-Osco, this means sending success stories to 30+ brands for Jewel-Osco’s 9th Annual Hispanic Heritage Month program, complete with sales lift from our circular, merchandising and event activations, recapping on their Día de los Muertos sponsorship, where they sponsored and sampled at the 30th Annual Day of the Dead festival at Chicago’s National Musuem of Mexican Art, or “finalizing plans for our annual Felices Fiestas program,” through which they interact with Hispanic shoppers, over a month, during the holidays.

Galindo also laughed while referring to what the Hispanic marketing universe calls ‘El Maratón Lupe-Reyes,’: “a light-hearted way to refer to the seemingly countless traditions honored by members of the Hispanic community, starting December 12, on the Feast of our Lady of Guadalupe, running all the way until January 6, on Three King’s Day.” This includes the nine days of Las Posadas, the Nochebuena, Christmas Day and New Year, and then ends with Día de Reyes, but can even be extended to February 2, Día de la Candelaria.

Mix of Ad, Display, Experiential and Social 

One of the biggest focuses of Hispanic marketers during the holidays has been how to best integrate multichannel behavior into their strategies. While Hispanics are showing particularly high use of digital channels for browsing, reviewing products and comparing prices, and are increasingly interested in convenience, they have also been revealed to enjoy the in-store shopping experience more than other shoppers.

Prioritizing convenience, Hispanics enjoy online shopping, and multichannel options like “click and collect,” which allow them to browse, order and pay online and collect the physical items in-store, are popular. But the IRI study also showed that 68 percent of Hispanic shoppers (and 7 in 10 Hispanic Millennials) say they enjoy grocery shopping versus 59 percent of total U.S. shoppers. And while 39 percent of U.S. shoppers report shopping alone, 79 percent of Hispanic shoppers go grocery shopping with someone else, such as a spouse, child or friend.

CHECK OUT: Inside Cargill’s Rumba Meats Relaunch

This has led to much greater mix in terms of the channels used for reaching Hispanic shoppers. Galindo explained that the Ethnic and Specialty Marketing Department at Jewel-Osco is “prepared with a multi-brand platform in place, featuring a comprehensive ad, display, experiential and social plan featuring some of the top items used for each of these celebrations”  including tamale prep endcaps, month-long hot pricing, tastings of champurrado, arroz con leche and Rosca de Reyes at stores throughout Chicagoland to stay “lockstep with the community.”

2017 Forecast: A Focus on Integrating Hispanic Consumer with Digital Strategies

So what will be changing between 2016 and 2017, as more insight is revealed about this key consumer demographic? “If anything, in 2017, we’ll be integrating even more feedback from brand and broker partners, Store Directors – not to mention executive teams at Jewel-Osco – and implementing even more themed experientialimg_1136 events throughout the year and tying them into hot pricing, display and social initiatives,” said Galindo, who helps organize more than 70 large-scale events for clients every year. “Think Chinese New Year, Día del Amor y la Amistad, an even bigger and better Taste of Passover, Día del Niño, Día de la Madre, Italian Heritage Month, and so many others.”

One thing that Galindo and her collaborators have learned is that “sometimes, the right products and the right assortment, at the right price, can be a lot more genuine and effective than a simple bilingual or in-language welcome sign.” Sometimes all the data in the world, or the thoroughly researched digital media plan, are less effective than that which is unquantifiable: “It’s about knowing the community our stores exists in, making the right hires, putting on a local lens, finding authentic products, and helping those products shine through endcaps and special callouts,” she elaborated.

Stockwell explained that in terms of big shifts between 2016 and 2017, “it will not be so much ‘shifting,’ but implementing plans to fully integrate the Hispanic consumer in key areas such as Mass media, Digital, Social, and Shopper Marketing.”

He added that “the Shopper Marketing component will also have more of a digital presence versus just in-store or near store.” And he made note of the rise of mobile among Hispanic consumers: “Given our Hispanic consumers are more and more relying on their mobile devices, there is a clear opportunity to enhance messaging and offers through a digital platform” in 2017.

No matter what media mix and messaging a brand selects to reach Hispanic shoppers in 2017, they will all need to find a way to make that personal connection with a demographic that sees right through inauthentic messages, and highly values family, and the shared moments that so many brands strive to bring them. “Knowing how much our shoppers – especially Hispanics – value the experience, the personal interaction, the trust factor, is the sweet spot,” said Galindo.

Join us at PORTADA Mexico!

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


AT&T is contemplating giving people who sign up for its new Internet TV service a free Apple TV set-top box or Amazon Fire USB stick.

Thousands of former Time Warner, now Charter, cable clients are cancelling their service due to changing prices.

Adobe is acquiring ad tech company TubeMogul for $540 million net of debt and cash.

Portada‘s 2017 Online Marketing Guide is out! Download it for free and get the latest in opportunities and challenges in the industry, video ad market forecasts and video audience development.

The FCC has said that it has serious concerns about whether rivals fccwill be able to compete with AT&T‘s $35/monthly online video service, DirecTV Now.

After Donald Trump‘s surprising win, many are wondering if he will reverse Barack Obama‘s net neutrality rules, which GOP congressmen have been hoping to take down for some time now.

YouTube has launched a virtual reality video app for the Daydream View VR headset that parent company Google developed.

SmarkLabs has announced the launch of Vidy, a tech-centric video production company aimed at accelerating growth for B2B brands. Vidy will function as its own brand and will focus on B2B-specific video production needs.


French programmatic media platform Tradelab announced the start of their Brazilian operations with an office in Sao Paulo, their sixth global office with local teams.

IAB Brazil has elected Cristiano Nóbrega to head the organization in 2017 for the programmatic media market.

The Brazilian Association of Ecommerce (ABComm) claims that the local market is expecting R$2.14bn ($630m) in revenues on Black Friday, November 25. This is 18% higher than revenues from last year.

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

comScore, Inc. and MediaMath have released a study: “The State of Programmatic Buying in Latin America,” which looks at opportunities for advertisers, agencies, media and ad tech companies in Mexico, ColombiaArgentina and Brazil.


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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Subscribe to weekly VIDEO MARKETING UPDATES!


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

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

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

Last Monday night, while 84 million people tuned into the presidential debate between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, Mexican beer company Tecate provided some comic relief in the form of a “YUGE” wall: a beer wall, that is. We spoke to Felix Palau, Heineken Brand Regional Director at Global Marketing Americas Heineken, about the campaign’s impact, more than a million views on Youtube, as well as Tecate’s impressive growth in the general market.

Felix Palau, Heineken Brand Regional Director at Global Marketing Americas Heineken
Felix Palau, Heineken Brand Regional Director at Global Marketing Americas Heineken

“The time has come for a wall,” says a booming voice projected over a bird’s eye view of the US-Mexico border. “A tremendous wall. The best wall.” The camera zooms in on two groups of men standing on opposite sides of a wall:  “a beer wall” that is revealed to be about, oh, one and a half feet high.

One of the men slams a Tecate beer can down on the wall, which also happens to serve as a perfect resting spot for a can of beer. “A wall that brings us together,” the voice says, as the men leap over, high-five, pull out a cooler of drinks and proceed to party. “This wall might be small, but it’s going to be YUGE,” the voice declares.

The ad, a clear reference to the infamous border wall that Donald Trump may or may not be serious about building (let’s hope we don’t have to find out), was aired on Fox News, Univision and Telemundo during the debate. Filmed on the border by Saatchi & Saatchi New York in Tecate, Mexico, it was the first time that Tecate, whose Tecate Light is the #1 growing light beer in the US, had targeted the general market instead of its typical bicultural Hispanic.

“Beer Is A Great Unifier”

Felix Palau, Heineken Brand Regional Director at Global Marketing Americas Heineken, explained that while targeting the bicultural Hispanic has been a winning strategy for years, the brand was ready to take it to the next level: “the main difference between this campaign and past ones is that the Tecate Beer Wall opened up the conversation with all consumers – regardless of their backgrounds – and is giving everyone a bold taste of the Tecate brand.”

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bev4NZEFsCQ]

Palau said that the spot, which has been viewed almost a million times on YouTube, has received an “extremely positive” reaction over the past week, and that “by playing into the ongoing conversation of this notion of a wall, and putting a very lighthearted, fun twist on it,” the brand has “created a very non-polarizing campaign that most people really love.”

Palau also asserted that the concept of the Tecate Beer Wall was working well in conveying the concept that “beer is a great unifier,” and that while they “have believed in this campaign from its conception, and it’s really rewarding to see millions of others reacting in a similarly positive way.”

By playing into the ongoing conversation of this notion of a wall, and putting a very lighthearted, fun twist on it, we created a very non-polarizing campaign that most people really love.

And while an ad so focused on border issues might attract more interest from Hispanic or Mexican viewers than the general market, in this case, the buzz surrounding the election (and people’s desperate need for comic relief) has made the spot a hit with all audiences.

Unlike other Tecate campaigns, the “Tecate Beer Wall has really brought these two worlds together,” Palau asserts. “From Mexicans and US Hispanics to the more general market consumer, the idea of people coming together to celebrate over a beer is an idea that resonates with people of all ethnicities.”

While Palau is Mexican born and admits that he lives somewhere between his Mexican and American worlds like many bicultural consumers, his team at Heineken is a big mix, and the campaign reminded him that “there’s something special about what happens when you’re in a melting pot that transcends borders.”

Transcending Borders, Race and Politics in a Polemic Election

While some may interpret the ad as a public endorsement of Hillary Clinton, or a rebuke of the concept of “the wall” or Donald Trump’s candidacy in general, Palau insists that the brand “strategically created the Tecate Beer Wall in a way that does not trivialize the issue or polarize any one group.”

The ad was truly about playing into an ongoing conversation in a lighthearted way, and the goal was “to stay neutral while opening up a dialogue about a very poignant topic that transcends borders, race and politics.”

From Mexicans and US Hispanics to the more general market consumer, the idea of people coming together to celebrate over a beer is an idea that resonates with people of all ethnicities.

So, don’t expect Tecate to go too crazy with its first foray into political satire. While Palau recognized that his team is “always open to new ideas,” he says they are “currently only focusing on this iteration of the Tecate Beer Wall spot.”

And certainly do not get your hopes up for an official Tecate presidential endorsement. This brand is all about getting some laughs out of an increasingly polarized and anxious American public.

“We believe its unifying message of bringing people together is very much aligned with our brand, and something people really need to hear – particularly in a Presidential campaign that has at often times, been very heated, causing a divide in consumers,” Palau says. “The ideal scenario is that whomever wins this long campaign, we can all celebrate with a Tecate or Tecate Light.”

I don’t know if I’ll be celebrating either way, but Palau’s probably got one thing straight: we’ll all need a beer after this election is over.


What are the most popular sports websites among U.S. Hispanics? What impact did the months preparing for the  Olympic Games have on theconsumption of sports content? The answers to these questions and more, according to comScore‘s June 2015 and June 2016 rankings.

As much as the amount of Hispanic users with Internet access increased,by 4% according to the table below, in June 2016 compared to June 2015, it is interesting to note how the general trend in the consumption of sports sites was negative. But one of the most important events of 2016 has been the Olympic Games, so maybe we will need to look at comScore’s August results to determine if this downward trend was reverted during the event.

Source: comScore Media Metrix, United States, Hispanic All, Home and Work, PC/Laptop only, Junio 2015 vs Junio 2016Unique Visitors (000)% Growth
    Total Internet:  Hispanic All30.14031.3574%
1    ESPN2.4912.374-5%
2    Yahoo Sports-NBC Sports Network2.5392.080-18%
3    Fox Sports Digital – Sporting News Media1.6621.558-6%
4    MSN Sports1.1081.41928%
5    Bleacher Report – Turner Sports Network1.7141.269-26%
6    USA TODAY Sports Media Group1.4601.205-17%
7    SB Nation1.4491.165-20%
8    MLB1.155979-15%
9    CBS Sports891794-11%
10    Sports Illustrated Sites746684-8%

In general terms, the sports category was visited by 32% of US Hispanics during June 2016, which represents an 8% decrease compared to the same month in 2015.

On all of the informed sites on the comScore ranking, there was a decrease in monthly visitors during June 2016, except in the case of MSN Sports, whose unique users increased by 28% compared to June 2015.

ESPN, the sports site operated by The Walt Disney Company, lost the least amount of users, while Bleacher Report, owned by  Turner Broadcasting, lost the most in this particular time period.

Mundial Sports Network, a leading Latino sports network with magazines like Futbol and Beisbol as well as digital properties like VidaLatina.comFutbolMundial.com, BeisbolMundial.com and BoxeoMundial.com, and YipTV, a live Internet TV platform that specializes in providing affordable, real-time content for Latinos, have a common goal: connecting underserved Hispanic audiences with the content they want. Out of this objective emerged a unique partnership grounded in a marketing strategy based on both digital campaigns and grass-roots efforts. We talk to Michael Tribolet, CEO of YipTV, about how this collaboration “elevates” both of their marketing efforts.

Reaching Underserved Hispanic Audiences

Michael Tribolet, CEO of YipTV
Michael Tribolet, CEO of YipTV

Mundial and YipTV’s collaboration started out of a need to find innovative ways to reach and serve Hispanic audiences who have often been abused by service providers. Latinos who want to watch their favorite sports, entertainment and news programs from back home have limited options, as many of them do not have credit cards to subscribe to OTT services, but can’t afford to pay for cable, either. After investing in YipTV, Mundial took it a step further and came up with a plan to work together toward their shared objectives.

Mundial has developed content for the same Latino through its free magazines and website for Latino boxing fans. Beisbol and Futbol magazines are distributed at local Florida bodegas, small community grocery stores, for free, generating a powerful and attractive reach into Latino audiences.

And West Palm Beach-based  YipTV has also found a place in local Florida bodegas. The platform wants Hispanics to be able to watch the content they want regardless of their status with a bank. To avoid the credit card issue, YipTV offers the option to pay for subscriptions in cash in over 16,000 Florida bodegas. New users can try 55 out of their 110 channels for free for the first week, and then the user has the option of paying $15 a month for the full programming or forgoing a subscription to access 15 free channels that cover sports, news and entertainment.

The deal is refreshing for Hispanic viewers who are used to being charged for links to see their favorite football tournaments or telenovelas, only to find that the links are broken or that the entire deal was a scam. They are understandably skeptical, and earning their trust and loyalty is no easy task.

Check Out: First half 2016 recap: 11 marketing and media developments you need to know about

YipTV Attracted to Mundial’s Unique and Targeted Reach

Mundial has created a habit out of creating partnerships that put their assets to the service of new ventures or platforms whose objectives align with theirs. Over the recent years, the network has incorporated powerful targeting and data analysis and segmenting platforms into its toolbox and built an in-house creative team that they can leverage for platforms like YipTV in exchange for promotion and ad space on its platforms.

Their publications along with our advertisement and marketing efforts allow us to rise the tides together rather than separately.  While Mundial helps inform the customers with information on what is going on, YipTV is providing the service to watch what they are talking about.

The deal with bodegas is also huge, since it affords them a way to “zoom into small ecosystems” like large cable companies cannot. “Mundial has a tremendous amount of experience in the Hispanic Market segment, not only here in the USA but on a global basis,” Tribolet asserts. The collaboration makes sense, because “the online and offline publications touched the very customers that we are targeting.”

Tribolet went on to explain that they are targeting Latinos that want a very specific mix of content. His wife, for example, was born in Cuba, and moved to the United States as an exclusively Spanish speaker. Now she’s fully acculturated, and in a sense, considers both English and Spanish her native languages. This is typical of today’s Latino: they want a mix of content that reminds them of home but speaks to their experiences as Hispanics in the United States, specifically.

The Bodega: A “Small Ecosystem” and Home Away from Home

Tribolet points to bodegas as “a big part of the un-bankable ecosystem” that they make use of as their bank, grocery store, and most importantly community updates.”

YipTV only began accepting payments at bodegas a month ago, but part of its strategy is to make these “great reference centers for what is going on in their community” central to marketing campaigns, sending actual staff to talk to people while conducting other standard marketing exercises like monitoring social media conversations about YipTV’s offerings. And knowing that their ads appear in Mundial’s free magazines, which fly off the shelves, they are sure to connect with the Hispanic sports fan.

In the end, Tribolet is certain that this type of collaboration is innovative and effective because  YipTV and Mundial Network “both have the same customer base with complimentary services.”

“Their publications along with our advertisement and marketing efforts allow us to rise the tides together rather than separately.  While Mundial helps inform the customers with information on what is going on, YipTV is providing the service to watch what they are talking about,” Tribolet asserts.

Join us at PORTADA Mexico!

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and its Multicultural Council have launched a “multicultural hub” to establish best practices across all multicultural considerations and segments. Portada spoke to Joe Laszlo, VP, Industry Initiatives at the IAB, to discuss the significance of this initiative and how the hub hopes to foment more thoughtful, effective multicultural campaigns.

Helping Digital Advertisers Thrive in a Multicultural, Digital World

A simple glance at recent statistics on the American population provide more than enough justification for an increased focus on reaching diverse, multicultural audiences: over 50% of the U.S. population is diverse, non-white Americans. In fact, just the numbers about Hispanics alone are impressive as well: Hispanics are the fastest growing population segment in the United States, and the population of Hispanics is expected to exceed 58 million by the end of 2016.

Joe Laszlo, VP of industry innovation, IAB
Joe Laszlo, VP, Industry Initiatives

“We needed to establish best practices on how to navigate challenges, develop authentic creative and be more effective in our approach as marketers,” Laszlo explains. So with the aid of the 60+ companies within the Council, and under the leadership of Co-Chairs Diego Antista, U.S. Multicultural Agency Head, Google, and Liz Blacker, EVP, Multicultural Strategy and Sales, iHeartMedia, the organization created an initiative to establish best practices that will support buy-side agency and brand partners in navigating multicultural advertising in the “new America.”

The Multicultural Council was created about five years ago, Laszlo says: “Members of the Hispanic community came to us and said, ‘We care about the Latinos in the US, but our titles cover a much broader group than that.'” As the IAB puts great effort into conducting research and producing resources like white papers, infographics and reports for those in the industry, it follows that the organization would create a group dedicated solely to promoting the growth and strength of the multicultural marketplace with regards to content, marketing, and corporate culture both in their initiatives and employee diversity.

The goal is to develop downloadable, single-page sheets on topics like multicultural programmatic, U.S. Hispanic search and strategies for LGBTQ audiences.

The goal is to develop downloadable, single-page sheets on topics like multicultural programmatic, U.S. Hispanic search and strategies for LGBTQ audiences to “help digital advertisers thrive in this digital world we live in,” says Laszlo.

Multicultural More than Hispanic 

It is not unusual for people to equate “multicultural” with simply “Hispanic,” but other demographics are growing at significant paces as well. Asia is projected to replace Latin America (including Mexico) as the minority-majority source of new U.S. immigrants. And African Americans have unprecedented buying power, reaching $1.2 trillion as of 2015 (up 275 percent from 1990).

But it is undeniable that the Hispanic community has contributed to raising awareness of the importance of speaking to each demographic and developing personalized messages for not just Hispanics, but also Asian Americans, African Americans, Latinos, Blacks, LGBTQ individuals, Veterans, as well as addressing Body Positivity and Gender Equality. The Multicultural Council started as a Hispanic Council, but it didn’t take long for it to evolve.

Multicultural needs to be more than just a checked box. That won’t resonate with audiences. Multicultural is much more about a strategy that can be adapted and transformed.

Laszlo agrees that many advertisers and marketers’ introductions to multicultural occurred through their Hispanic targeting efforts. In their efforts to better comprehend today’s Hispanic, they realized that each demographic has its own nuances and sets of values. “In the past, marketers and brands would say, ‘We have our mainstream marketing message, we’d better do it in Spanish too.’ Then they realized just translating wasn’t the most authentic way to speak to that audience. As that realization hit, they realized that the way to speak authentically to other audiences and demographics requires subtlety and nuance and expertise as well.”

The industry’s journey with Hispanic audiences has taught it “how to listen and understand an audience,” Laszlo asserts.

Best Practices for the “New America”

When asked to elaborate on the concept of establishing best practices for the “new American,” Laszlo says, “Multicultural needs to be more than just a checked box. That won’t resonate with audiences. Multicultural is much more about a strategy that can be adapted and transformed.”

“Everyone has radar for inauthentic messages. Smart brands and agencies want to do the right thing, and the fallout for being clumsy or insensitive with strategies will backfire.”

“It’s the death of media mass communication,” Laszlo continues. Platforms and tools for making practical use of Big Data for analytics and targeting mean that there is no excuse for failing to speak to consumers as individuals.

“It’s about a subtle shift in the balance of ‘we’re all Americans, and there are certain values that resonate with all of us’ versus ‘we are unique individuals that identify with many communities,’ and in terms of the way that marketers strategize, that shift is reflected in their planning,” Laszlo explains.

Laszlo believes that multicultural tactics will become general marketing tactics with time, as the industry moves “from mass undifferentiated communication to sensitivity to different interests,” because “everyone wants to be spoken to in a way that is authentic and meaningful to them.”

The conversation has gradually shifted from advertising buyers outside of multicultural specialist agencies asking “why would I need to do more than just translate”  to “how can I build a multicultural tool kit that’s going to work.”

IAB’s Multicultural Hub is showcased through this link, accessible to anyone on the website. The organization will also be distributing copies at multicultural related events. The goal is to show the industry that the IAB takes multicultural audiences very seriously, and imply that other industry professionals should as well.

“Everyone has radar for inauthentic messages,” Laszlo says. “Smart brands and agencies want to do the right thing, and the fallout for being clumsy or insensitive with strategies will backfire.”

Join us at PORTADA Mexico!

Dish’s Sling TV promises to “take back TV” for $20 a month through live programming from your computer screen. But when it comes to catering to increasingly important Hispanic viewers, Sling TV is forming a strategy to make sure its advertising targeting capabilities and programming are finely tuned.

We spoke with Jose cuba-max-tvRomero, general manager of Sling Latino, about how the platform will be tailoring its content and ad capabilities to Latino viewers, and the launch of CUBAMAX TV, its curated channel for Cuban American audiences. It is the first American channel of its kind to offer content filmed and produced on the island.

Introducing Addressable Capabilities to Ad Inventory

While Romero asserts that at the moment, Sling does not have its own ad sales force for selling to Hispanic audiences, he says that the company expects “to introduce addressable capabilities to Sling TV ad inventory in the coming months, enabling us to reach individual Hispanic subscribers across a variety of networks.”

The company has admitted that this type of targeting is key to the platform’s business model, as they are more valuable than broadcast ads. And since ads are not exactly popular with viewers, especially on paid content, these targeting capabilities should help the company get closer to its goal: more relevancy, less advertisement.

SlingTV admits that targeting is key to the platform’s business model.

Sling Launches CUBAMAX TV 

One of Sling TV’s latest announcements in the realm of Hispanic targeting is the launch of the CUBAMAX TV channel, which, in Romero’s words, will “create a cultural exchange that will both provide a window into life on the island and connect Cuban-Americans with content from their home country.”

60 percent of CUBAMAX TV’s content is generated by Cuba’s state agency RTV Commercial, while the other content consists of documentaries created by young, independent filmmakers. The channel has acquired the rights to 200 Cuban movies and will be showing two movies and as many as three telenovelas per day. Programming on CUBAMAX TV such as “Sonando en Cuba” and “Vivir del Cuento” will showcase the unique perspective of the people of the island.

The relationship between the United States and Cuba has evolved greatly since President Obama fully restored American diplomatic relations with Havana in December 2014. And the effect of this announcement was as cultural as it was political, encouraging a deeper connection between the countries, who have always been tied by the significant Cuban-American population in states like Florida.

Commenting on the effect of these developments on Sling’s decision to develop content for Cuban-American audiences, Romero says: “Since President Obama’s announcement in late 2014, we, like many companies, have been exploring a greater level of cultural engagement between the U.S. and Cuba.”

He continues to explain that the channel provides an outlet for Cuban voices and talent that had been somewhat stifled due to the previously tense diplomatic relations. “We think normalization has created a tremendous opportunity that is yielding benefits, in this case for our customers, for the Cuban population living in the U.S., and for the entertainers whose work is aired on CUBAMAX TV.”

And while this shift has already undoubtedly created many opportunities for American tourism on the island, channels like CUBAMAX TV will hopefully shed light on the magic of Cuban culture for those that cannot travel there themselves. “While not everyone gets the opportunity to visit the island, our customers can now turn on our TV and get a feel for the culture and entertainment the Cuban people have worked to cultivate,” Romero adds.

Programming for Hispanics: Not So One-Dimensional

Sling Latino has gotten one thing right already: developing programming for Hispanic audiences is no easy task, as those that fall into the ‘Hispanic’ category are by no means uniform in language preferences or taste. For that reason, Romero says that Sling has developed a variety of programming packages: “Sling offers a suite of standalone and add-on Spanish-language programming packages tailored to English-dominant, bilingual and Spanish-dominant U.S. households.”

Best of Spanish TV packages are priced at $5 more per month when combined with either Sling Orange (single-stream) or Sling Blue (multi-stream) services. They are $10 when purchased as standalone packages.

What’s more, the platform is taking regional variations into account: “We recently announced that Sling Latino is the first to launch regionally focused programming packs, beginning with CARIBE, which includes content from Cuba, Puerto Rico, and coming soon, the Dominican Republic.”

And they’re not stopping there. Romero adds: “We plan to add new regional packs in the coming months, and look forward to delivering the regional content that our customers crave in a way that allows for flexibility, mobility and personalization in their entertainment.”

Join us at PORTADA Mexico!


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

Instagram is expanding its Carousel ad format to let marketers publish videos, photos or a combination of both as the compainstagramny brainstorms ways to increase user engagement with the ads.

eMarketer is claiming that Americans will spend just one
minute more on Facebook by 2018, as other platforms like Instagram and Snapchat take up more and more of our time. This year, American adults will spend an average of 22 minutes a day on Facebook and 43 minutes a day on social media services. Most of this time will be on mobile devices, not desktops or laptops. Due to this, Facebook is set to earn 35 cents per hour spent by an adult on mobile devices, compared  to 19 cents on desktops and laptops.

The New York Times’s operating profit fell 13 percent in the first quarter as ad sales dropped and the costs of their digital operations increased. Shares of the publisher, which is spending heavily to strengthen its advertising technology, fell 4.4 percent to $12.32 in afternoon trading on Tuesday.

Twitter is forecasting a less-than-impressive revenue performance in the second quarter, as the company has struggled to generate ad sales. Shares declined by 17% on Wednesday.

Alphabet, (Google’s parent company) on the other hand, announced a 17% rise in quarterly revenue thanks to mobile advertising sales. Revenues rose from 17.26 billion to 20.26 billion between January and March. It’s ad revenue jumped by 16.2% in the first quarter, and the number of paid clicks jumped 29%.

Pinterest has acquired the team from mobile ad-tech company URX, which specializes in selling technology that can be used to identify trends in content consumption to target mobile ads. Interestingly, Pinterest will be shutting down the product as it acquires only the staff.

Snapchat has commenced its experimentation with e-commerce ads, as Target and Lancôme ran formats of 10-second call-to-action spots to swipe for more info or to go straight to the mobile shopping page.

The Latin Online Video Forum, part of #PortadaLat on June 8-9 in Miami’s Hyatt Regency Hotel, is bringing all of the big players in online video in the Americas together, including key brand marketers such as Nestle, 3M, Volaris, Fallabella, Best Western and many more. Get your early bird tix!


eMarketer and Rock Content’s latest research claims that when it comes to techniques used for marketing and advertising in the tech sector in Brazil, nine out of ten staff members are using data analytics tools. Landing page creation (70%), SEO analysis (63%), marketing automation (58%)and A-B testing (32%) were also popular tools and techniques.

Brazilian publisher Editora Abril has established a abrilpartnership with MOAT to use the latter’s digital marketing intelligence for online campaigns. Abril hopes to be able to generate better insights on view ability and engagement with ads contents to improve the transparency it provides its clients.

ZoomIn.TV is opening operations in Mexico, where it will offer its online video content, advertising and technology expertise to the region of Latin America. ZoomIn.TV also has offices in the United States and Canada.

Kantar IBOPE Media, the Latin American media research firm, and comScore, the multiplatform measurement company, announced a strategic alliance through which solutions will be launched in Latin America. One of those solutions is the integration of TGI Clickstream, which integrates the data from Kantar IBOPE’s Target Group Index and offers a complete analysis of consumer behavior, with comScore’s MMX platform, which gives a complete vision of online audiences. It is to be launched in Brazil this year, followed by Colombia, Argentina, Peru and Chile in 2017.

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


According to reports, online video rental service Redbox might open up an online video streaming service, which would be called Redbox Digital. Testing is said to be in beta, but nothing has been officially announced yet.

Honda decided to try a new approach to video advertising, targeting consumers in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut with personalized video ads based on information from data providers like what cars they own, what websites they’ve visited and information indicating whether they are looking to buy a car or not. The ads were put together by digital advertising firm Eyeview.

Broadband TV has announced that it is the third-most viewed online video provider in the world, coming in behind Google and Facebook. comScore’s results showed that it had more than 317 million unique viewers in February, behind Google’s more than 1 billion and Facebook’s 602 million. This put it ahead of Vevo and Warner Music.

Photo Credit: TubeFilter
Photo Credit: TubeFilter

Actress Elizabeth Banks has created WhoHaha, a digital video service with content created by women only. Banks will have a few of her own series on the platform, including her interview program, Ask A Badass, but the rest of the content will be sourced from popular YouTube creators.

Verizon is paying $159 million to acquire a 24.5% stake in AwesomenessTV, a digital media company owned by DreamWorks and Hearst. The deal includes the launch of a new premium mobile-video brand, and Dreamworks will hold 51% of the outstanding shares while Hearst will own 24.5%.

OTT solution provider XStream and Vidicia, the enterprise-class subscription billing leader, are partnering up to provide an OTT solution for building and monetizing audiences through gathering user data for subscriber acquisition and retention.

A Defy Media survey claimed that 67% consumers identified YouTube as a must-have service, while only 36% said the same of pay TV. This is largely due to the influence of younger audiences, who have largely abandoned TV for YouTube, Netflix and other Internet video options. The study also found that consumers aged 13-24 watch 12.1 hours of video per week on YouTube, social media and other free online sources, and 8.8 hours weekly on Netflix and other subscription-video services, while they only spend 8.2 hours a week watching television.

Programmatic video technology provider Altitude Digital has announced its new video solution, ARENA, a SPP offering while-label self service offerings for publishers. The platform will give publishers more options when managing their desktop and mobile video advertising activities and working with DSPs through taking control of real-time bidding exchange.

Geoscape has released its 2016 American Marketscape DataStream report, and interesting findings included the fact that 64% of Hispanics identified themselves as “bilingual,” that their median age of the demographic is 27 (as opposed to 44 for non Hispanics) and that Hispanic households’ consumer spending potential is $2.17 million (as opposed to $1.6 million for non-Hispanic white households).

The Atlantic and Univision have officially launched CityLab Latino, which provides a Spanish-language alternative to The Atlantic’s urban and lifestyle site, CityLab. It is now live in univision.com, and is led by Juan Pablo Garnham, who was a fixture at El Diario, out of a Miami office. This is The Atlantic’s first non-English language initiative.

DON’T MISS PORTADA’S UPCOMING EVENT: PortadaLat’s two-day LatAm marketing, advertising, media and digital conference will be held from June 8-9, 2016 in Miami, and will feature a session on the OTT revolution. Register now to hear about monetization, view ability, YouTube, Facebook and more. Get your tickets at the early bird price now!


Global media services provider RR Media is opening a new regional LATAM Media Center in Miami to service content for Hispanic and Portuguese viewers across LatAm, the US and Canada. The center will give regional broadcasters, TV channels and organizations access to the company’s services (like ad insertion, multi-format layout and remote uplink to RR media’s network) with the advantage of new localized content. There are already a dozen channels playing out of the new center.

Remote support and control solution provider for cloud servicesdownload (1) Rsupport has announced updates to its mobile recording app, Mobizen, which is heavily used in Brazil. The new features will make it easier to record, edit and broadcast content from a mobile device.

New reports from a leaked document from Telefonica show that after hackers posted personal emails from Ecuadorian government officials on March 27, 2014, Google and YouTube were censored in the country by a government order. Ecuador’s internet providers’ association blocked access to certain pages, according to the leak.

Latin America will show the strongest global growth in digital advertising in 2016 with a growth rate of 11%, largely propelled by online video advertising. Digital will account for 27% of global advertising spend in 2016, the study by Carat reveals. Online video advertising in particular will grow by 34.7%.

Click here to read some of the highlights from Hispanicize, the weeklong conference that was held from April 6-8 this year and serves as a platform for Latino creators to discuss trends and launch new campaigns and products for the Hispanic audience.

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


TWITTER MADE A BIG ACQUISITION: It’s been reported that Twtwitteritter paid $479.1 million to acquire ad-tech firm TellApart earlier this year, with $395 million of that recorded as goodwill. This is $52 million less than the original price tag, thanks to the company’s declining stock value. The real dollar amount of the acquisition only got reported in the last filing of Twitter with financial regulators.

Former commercial director at Pandora Jon Stubley is now directing the Australian office of LA-based, in-image ad start-up GumGum. The digital marketing platform mixes display and native advertising through patented algorithms that look for tags and keywords and scan visuals to create campaigns for clients.

NATIVEX ACQUIRED BY MOBVISTA: Mobile game and app startup NativeX is being acquired by Chinese mobile ad platform Mobvista for about $24.5 million. NativeX has more than a billion users on 1,000 publishing networks, and Mobvista claims to have 10 billion daily impressions and a user database covering two billion devices.

WPP has announced that its operating network Millward Brown, which specializes in communications and research, has acquired market research firm Analytics Quotient, which uses data to help clients define their advertising strategies through data visualization tools and analysis. The firm has 400 employees and works with large commercial and hotel brands.

Japanese e-commerce firm Rakuten‘s marketing department has acquired ad-tech startup Manifest Commerce Inc. in its effort to increase their ad targeting and serving capabilities on social media. Manifest helps retailers advertise their products online through Facebook and Google, and has worked with companies like Neiman Marcus Group Inc., Gilt Groupe Inc., One Kings Lane and Living Social, Inc.


FROM FACEBOOK TO NOBOX: Alexandre Hohagen, former CEO of Google and Facebook in Latin America and US Hispanics, is joining Nobox, a full-service marketing agency, to develop its Latin America business as CEO and Partner. One of his main goals will be enhance the agency’s relevancy and footprint for its clients including Netflix, PlayStation, Hotel Tonight, Marriott, Copa Airlines, Royal Caribbean and Volkswagen. 

cisneros-chLeading Brazilian DMP (data management platform) and Behavioral Data firm Tail Target and Cisneros Interactive, Cisnero‘s digital advertising investment branch, has announced a joint venture launching Tail Target Latino, which will operate in both the U.S. and Latin America. The deal will help the two companies offer better DMP solutions, data on navigational behavior and support in clients’ native languages.

ADTZ BUYS GLOW DIGITAL: Latin America and Europe-based social media advertising firm ADTZ has acquired Glow Digital Media, a London-based paid media firm. The combined entity, which will operate under the name ADGLOW, will offer its services through an extensive network of offices in Barcelona, Bogotá, Hong Kong, London, Milan, Mexico DF, New York, San Francisco and Singapore, with its headquarters in Madrid.

BRAZIL TO SURPASS MEXICO IN OTT REVENUE: Apparently, Brazil will surpass Mexico in OTT revenue by 2018. eMarketer claims that Brazil’s OTT market should grow by 33% annually, and that while Mexico’s OTT revenue should jump from $276 million in 2015 to $454 million by 2018, Brazil’s should increase from $180 million to $462 million. Argentina‘s should increase from $45 million to $113 million in that time span.

What: The importance of taking advantage of the Super Bowl to reach Hispanic audiences is increasing. While many brands chose to reach Hispanics over the English-language CBS cast. ESPN Deportes, the rights holder for yesterday’s Spanish-language cast said that 30 advertisers signed on for national ad buys.
Why It Matters: The Super Bowl represents one of the largest advertising investments for brands, and there is a captive Hispanic audience waiting to be reached. Brands are hoping not to lose this opportunity to take advantage of the event’s visibility.

Translated by Gretchen Gardner

While soccer may be the most popular sport for Latin audiences, there are more and more Hispanics interested in the NFL, and super bowlbrands know it. To take advantage of this potential market, agencies are using the Super Bowl platform to generate campaigns.

The NFL is making an increasing effort to connect with the Hispanic market.

“The NFL is increasing efforts to connect with the Hispanic market,” says Jorge Villalobos, general director of Sports Marketing Monterrey, a sports marketing agency. This is achieved not only through creating a Spanish-language site, but also through other specific actions like that of the Dallas Cowboys, who create a halftime show specifically for its Hispanic fans.

A formula designed to promote Advertising

American football was created through a formula that was designed to promote advertising. For decades, the Super Bowl halftime has represented the largest investment for some TV advertisements budgets. This year the franchise will break new records, as 30 seconds of ad space will cost $5 million.

But getting an ad into the Super Bowl doesn’t always have to mean  spending that much, says Villalobos. More and more brands are using digital networks or promotions in stores and supermarkets. “We see more brands doing pre-launches of their Super Bowl spots on social media as well.”

The NFL is making an increasing effort to connect with the Hispanic market.

“What you do is take advantage of the fans before the event,” says Arturo Caro, Care/Client Service Director of the agency Mirum Mexico.

To attract the Mexican market on these campaigns, Caro recommends nationalizing, or localizing, the advertising so that the local spectator identifies with the event, and that agencies stop thinking about the Super Bowl as purely American. The best way to do this is through digital platforms. “Thanks to digitalization of conversations, it’s possible to connect with a larger audience,” says Caro.

This same connectivity will mean that the audience is not only concentrated on what happens on TV, but also what happens on Twitter, Facebook and Snapchat, posting in real time, and this is where brands need to enter the equation. The most important thing about getting on the Super Bowl wave is not forgetting that “you have to stay relevant; you can’t just get your ad in there just to say you did it,” says Caro.

You can’t just get your ad in there to say you did it.

The common theme is already there, and so is the Hispanic audience. Now, what’s missing are creative strategies to start the conversation and maintain the audience’s attention. “You have to work the market to generate a real emotional connection,” says Villalobos.

How Avocados From Mexico’s New SuperBowl Ad Targets the “Nueva Latina”
McDonald’s Patricia Diaz: “More and More Latinos are Becoming Football Fans”

Join us at PORTADA Mexico!

A summary of this week’s most exciting news in online video in the U.S. and Latin American markets. If you’re trying to stay up-to-date with these constantly-evolving markets, look no further.


spotifySPOTIFY BETS ON VIDEO: Spotify announced that it will be revealing an Android app as well as an iOS app by the end of next week. Can’t say we’re surprised, as the company’s biggest competitors, like Facebook, YouTube and Snapchat, have embraced online video content.

MORE HISPANICS TUNING IN: A new comScore report shows that in 2015, NBC Universal‘s Hispanic Plus channel reached four-fifths of all Hispanic online video consumers. This means it reaches 14.8 million Hispanics between the age of 18 and 34, and 90% of all millennial Hispanic online video consumers. Univision Digital alone reaches 7.6 million Hispanics. Social media following on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram grew 60% in 2015, with a total of 10.6 million fans worldwide. In November 2015, Telemundo became the first ever Spanish-language television network to surpass the one million subscriber mark, receiving YouTube’s Gold Button Award.

Providing further proof that everyone is betting on online video, tennis stars and man and wife Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf have invested in Unscriptd, a site re-launched last week that will promote videos filmed by athletes themselves. The idea is that the videos be personal, showing a different and real side of their everyday lives. Unscriptd was originally launched as a content provider for sports video clips in 2013.

FLASH DOOMED WHILE HTML5 BOOMS: This, along with other data collected about video streaming today, were released by Encoding.com recently in its 2016 Global Media Format Report. H.264 has 72% of all encoding activity worldwide, followed by WebM with 12%, and HEVC and Flash with 6%, respectively.

AD BLOCKING TRENDS: Video advertising platform Teads announced a global study detailing how people block ads, finding that 80% of those surveyed would consider installing an ad blocker if it would help them avoid or close an ad. Pop-ads are the most commonly-mentioned reason for installing an ad blocker, and 67% used ad blockers on Chrome, while 38% used Firefox. Interestingly, on mobile, users were 78% more likely to are Hispanic.

INSTAGRAM VIDEO ADS SELLING BIG: The company registered a CPM price increase from $5.21 to $7.20 between September and November 2015.  The Facebook owned company also said that it expects to top 1 billion monthly ad impressions on Instagram during the first quarter of 2016.


PIRACY HUGE IN LATAM: Anti-piracy association Alianza piracyreleased a study of online video piracy in South America, developed by consulting firm NetNames and found that almost half of the 222.3 million Internet users had downloaded content from pirated content through cyberlockers (62.7 million unique users/month), peer-to-peer networks (46.1 million unique users/month) and IPTV streaming sites (8.8 million unique users/month).


There’s no question that multicultural targeting has become a priority for every brand. We spoke to Martin Cerrí, group creative director at advertising agency Walton Isaacson about their new Hispanic-targeted campaign for Lexus’s RX Crossover, “Meet the Unexpected.”

isaacsonUpon watching the spot, there is no question that it was inspired by a sense of other-worldiness. A man wakes up in a desert with a key to the Lexus RX in his hand. After getting into the car, he drives through gorgeous mountain scenery until a woman appears out of nowhere and gets in with him.

So when Cerrí told us the ad was inspired by Latin America’s beloved magical realism (think Gabriel García Márquez), we were pleasantly surprised, but it certainly made sense: “Magical Realism” is reality magnified by a touch of something unexpected; it is somewhat supernatural or fantastical, but it’s still rooted in reality,”  said Cerrí, who added wanted to take something that “goes beyond literature and influences other creative forms such as art and film” and use it as a tool to connect to sophisticated Latino audiences.

How would you describe this potential Lexus RX driver? According to Cerrí, this ad speaks to a savvy person who “truly appreciates it when a brand recognizes their intelligence and impact.” What’s more, Walton Isaacson wanted to connect the Lexus RX brand with the “family-focused, entrepreneurial” qualities we associate with this ambitious, inventive target.LEX-RXG-MY16-0048 (1)

Brands know that connecting with Latinos through targeted communications has become mandatory for overall brand success.

The Latino buying a luxury car is also proud of his or her heritage and culture, but tired of the typical, cliche approaches to Hispanic-targeted advertising. They are “contemporary, even future-forward,” said Cerri.

Campaign Foundation

And those tired and overused stereotypes are even more ineffective when designing a campaign for a luxury product. “This is why ‘Magical Realism’ became the foundation of our campaign as it is deeply rooted in Latino identity and culture but hasn’t been leveraged in a luxury context,” Cerrí asserted.

Walton Isaacson is handling all the media buying and was also responsible for the entire concept and production of the spot. Cerrí was enthusiastic about the work that goes into multicultural advertising, and highlighted that “brands know that connecting with Latinos through targeted communications has become mandatory for overall brand success.”

This isn’t their first rodeo with Lexus, either: they’ve created Latino-targeted campaigns for the automotive brand since 2009, and according to Cerrí, Lexus “has consistently achieved business growth in an increasingly competitive category.” He added, “In the case of other categories and potential clients, Walton Isaacson is receiving more invitations to be a part of pitches for brands that are realizing that they can’t stay on the sidelines when it comes to reaching out to the Latino audience.”

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


SO HOW DID 2015 GO? Bot Data released data on advertising impressions from 1,300 campaigns over 61 days in 2015, and found some interesting stuff. Supposedly, advertisers had a higher amount of bot percentages in 2015 than they did in 2014. Media with higher CPMs (cost per thousand impressions) was more vulnerable to bots. Programmatic ad buys displayed higher levels of fraud, and campaigns designed for particular demographics typically resulted in more bots.

AND WHAT ABOUT AD-TECH ACQUISITIONS? Another research firm, Results International, found that ad-tech acquisitions were high between Q3 and A4 in 2015, representing almost a third of all mergers and acquisitions in ad and marketing tech during Q4. Marketing automation M&A (involving mostly private equity firms and network agencies) is set to increase in 2016, as advertising platforms surged in Q4 after a poor performance earlier in the year.

NOW, BACK TO 2016…Audio industry tech provider Triton triton digitalDigital and Audio.Ad, a digital audio ad network that caters  to the LatAm and U.S. Hispanic markets, announced a partnership to launch programmatic buying and selling of Audio.Ad’s digital audio inventory through Triton’s audio ad exchange, a2x.

Ad tech platform operator So Operative, which facilitates the management of online ad space for publishers, is launching a “partner premium” so that companies on Operative can share inventory in an “ad-tech tax-free environment,” says CEO Lorne Browne. According to Browne, supply-side specialists will be happy to share inventory with another Operative customer instead of giving it to a programmatic company.

SNAPCHAT LOOKING TO AUTOMATIZE ADS, MAKE SOME ENTREPRENEURS VERY RICH: Snapchat will be looking for ways to build ad technology to automatize its ads, and to do so, may be willing to make a tech acquisition. Rumor has it its looking at Beeswax which helps advertisers bid for targeted ads, and Metamarkets, which focuses on programmatic buying.

WHATSAPP WON’T PERMIT ADS, WILL BE FREE-OF-CHARGE: WhatsApp has announced that it will not allow third-party ads and will not be charging subscription fees. Instead, the cmopany will be testing ways to allow users to “communicate” with businesses and organizations that they want to interact with.

TWITTER TO THE RESCUE: Twitter wants to help its advertisers improve the promotion of their ad campaigns, so it’s compiling the positive tweets published by users that relate to a particular service or product. It’s called a “Gallery of Brand Enthusiasts,” and it will allow brands to tweet the recommendations that they find most useful.

THE ONION, SET TO HELP UNIVISION REACH MILLENNIALS? We didn’t see it coming either, but Univision announced that it purchased a 40% stake in The Onion. Other than helping Univision reach millennials, the move should give Univision a new way to experiment with its digital advertising through different channels.

Join us at PORTADA Mexico!


BRAZIL, CRACKING DOWN: Brazilian congressman Esperidião Amin is proposing an investigation into cybercrime and web automation that will involve a crackdown on companies that place ads on sites with illegal content in an attempt to “punish funding” of illegal online activity. Good luck with that, Esperidião, you’re going to need it.

CHILE: DISCONNECTING? The Subsecretary of Telecommunications in Chile is claiming that mobile connections have dropped since 2014. But don’t worry, people aren’t actually disconnecting – this probably just means that people with multiple devices are cutting back, or that the arrival of 4G has caused 3G usage to decrease, so those with campaigns in Chile shouldn’t take their advertising money out of mobile just yet.

BRAZIL GOES SMART: eMarketer reports that more than 90% of mobile internet users under 35 have a smartphone. The information in the report came from research compiled from Mobile Marketing Association (MMA), Millward Brown, Netquest, Adsmovil, Mirum, ROIx and Zenvia. This should push advertisers that haven’t shifted their focus to mobile onto the bandwagon.

BRAZIL (YES, BRAZIL) IS GOING TO THE SUPERBOWL: Heinz ketchup is introducing the “Meet the Ketchups” campaign during the Superbowl, and has turned to Brazilian agency David to create it. David is an offshoot of Ogilvy&Mather with its original offices in Sao Paulo and Buenos Aires, David recently opened a Miami office to improve coordination with Heinz. It’s important to note that one of Kraft Heinz’s owners is 3G Capital, a Brazilian global investment firm.

LEO BURNETT ARGENTINA WINS BIG AT “ONE SHOW” AWARDS: Leo Burnett Argentina was the only Latin American agency to be recognized by the Automobile Advertising of the Year awards on January 11 in Detroit. Their “Safety Truck” campaign, which was also recognized in Cannes, was awarded the prize for Corporate Social Responsibility. Congratulations!


A summary of this week’s most exciting news in online video in the U.S. and Latin American markets. If you’re trying to stay up-to-date with these constantly-evolving markets, look no further.


YOUNG LATINOS ARE WORTH MILLIONS: Mitú, a digital media content provider with more than 6,000 “creators” catering to Latinos across the globe, has announced a $27 million Series C funding from investors like AwesomenessTV (a Joint Venture of Dreamworks Animation and Hearst Corporation), Verizon and WPP Digital. This means that the company has raised $43 million thus far. The impressive team at Mitú has managed to generate around two billion video views per month, so we can see what all the fuss is about.  Mitu’s early backers include the Chernin Group.

NOTHIN’ BUT NET: SendtoNews has teamed up with the NBA to syndicate their digital highlights from the NBA, WNBA and sendto newsNBA D-League, which will be distributed by SendtoNews’s online publishing partners, which includes over 1,400 online companion sites for newspapers, radio and television stations, as well as news websites and blogs across North America.  This syndication agreement is just another that the company has arranged with sports leagues such as the MLB, NASCAR, the PGA Tour and Golden Boy Promotions (for boxing video highlights). SendtoNews network of online publishing partners generates over 1 billion views per year.

DEMOCRATS GO AFTER THE HISPANIC VOTE: The Democratic National Committee has launched its first Spanish-language video in a spot attacking Republican candidates for opposing President Barack Obama‘s executive action on gun control. The spot is visible on digital channels like The Democrats’ YouTube channel.

LAUGHTER, A UNIVERSAL LANGUAGE: “Saturday Night Live” creator Lorne Michaels and SNL alumni Fred Armisen and Horatio Sanz have launched a new venture called  Más Mejor, a digital comedy channel targeting the Latino millennial audience that will feature short-form videos and editorial programming in both Spanish and English. Armisen and Sanz will be writing for the project, so get ready to laugh, whatever language you speak.  According to the press release, Más Mejor’s content will instantly reach over 100 million unique monthly viewers thanks to powerful distribution partnerships with NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises, POPSUGAR Latina and Batanga Media.

8-DIGIT FUNDING FOR INNOVID: New York-based startup Innovid, an interactive video advertising company that uses a SaaS business model to avoid traditional strategies like ad buying, has announced a $27.5 million Series E funding round. This follows their previous round of funding in March 2015, in which they were awarded $10 million investment. Investors include NewSpring Capital, Sequoia Capital Israel, T-Venture (Deutsche Telekom’s investment arm), Cisco Investments, and Genesis Partners.

PERISCOPE AND TWITTER, A NEW DYNAMIC DUO: Apple device owners using Twitter‘s app will soon see Periscope videos seamlessly integrated into their feed, which can either be streamed live or watched later on demand until they expire. We’d be surprised if Twitter hadn’t acquired Periscope in March 2015.

VIRTUAL REALITY: THE FUTURE OF ONLINE VIDEO? YouTube is making big moves in its effort to support high-quality virtual reality content, compatible with the company’s Google Cardboard virtual reality headset and Google Jump google cardboardcamera rig. The company is also working to make virtual reality compatible with the YouTube iOS app. While YouTube already offers virtual reality support for its app on Android, the move indicates that VR will play a big role in the future of online video.

SANTA WAS GOOD TO AMAZON PRIME:  Amazon has announced that it signed up more than 3 million new Prime members in the end of December. The Fire tablet was the top-selling device during the holiday season, and the Fire TV Stick, a $50 tablet, was the third-most sold streaming device, which includes a 30-day trial membership to Prime (which probably explains the jump in new members).

NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast, is releasing its first subscription video on demand (SVOD) service, which will feature 2,000 hours of original comedy content for $3.99 a month. This marks a shift in the company’s digital strategy towards OTT, on-demand video.

IBM LEAPS INTO ONLINE VIDEO: IBM has purchased the online video service provider Clearleap, which it will incorporate into its IBM Cloud platform for distribution all over the world. Clearleap’s clients include HBO, Time Warner y Verizon, for which they provide streaming services.


MOST-VISITED SITES IN LATAM: Check out our latest rankings in the most-visited sites in Latam, separated by country. Some will surprise you, some won’t. Portada’s expert-in-residence, Lorena Hure, weighs in.

BITCOIN AND NETFLIX: A MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN? In a speech at the 2016 Internet, Media and Telecommunications Conference, held on January 6th and 7th, David Wellschief financial officer at Netflix, was asked about the complexity of launching payment services in Latin America, and seemed to imply that he is open to the idea of accepting Bitcoin in the region, saying: “[it] sure would be nice to have bitcoin, in terms of a global currency, that you could use globally.”

FAV, OFF TO A GOOD START: Fav, the digital content and entertainment channel for young Spanish-speaking audiences, had a great first year, with 53 channels, 205 million views and 1.3 million subscribers. Fav’s goal is to connect global content creators (in English, Spanish and Portuguese) in Latin America with the Hispanic market in the U.S., and it looks like they’ve done a good job so far.

GOOGLE IN LATAM: Google has released a new CDN (Content Delivery Network) that will allow faster uploads and downloads for non-conventional platforms like OTT, TV Everywhere and VOD in Latin America, with five servers in Mexico City, Sao Pablo and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Buenos Aires, Argentina and Santiago, Chile.

OTT REACHES DEEPER INTO LATAM: Nickelodeon has nogginreleased the first version of its international OTT channel, Noggin, in Latin America. The application includes SVOD content for pre-school audiences, costs $2.99 a month and works on all iOS and Android mobile devices.

ADSMOVIL LOOKS BACK AT VIDEO IN 2015: Adsmovil released a report on the year that mobile had in Latin America, and as you could have guessed, it was big. Regarding video, the report found that Brazil represented 48.7% of all video views in the region, while the most popular device for watching videos was the smartphone, the typical Latin American watching an average of 5.2 hours of video per week.

Portada speaks with some of the key players in multicultural sports marketing to gather insights on their goals and priorities for 2016. Views and forecasts from leaders at Tecate, Amtrak, Elemento, TeamWorks Media, GLR, Fox and AC&M Group.

By Gretchen Gardner

chivasThe growing Hispanic market has become increasingly key for American brands’ marketing efforts. But it’s not an easy task to develop a strategy that works for such a diverse, segmented audience. Hispanic Americans hail from such diverse cultures and geographic regions and have different levels of insertion into American culture, making it difficult to group them all into one market.

But one thing is clear: Hispanic-Americans love sports. In fact, a Nielson study indicated that 94% of Hispanics identify themselves as sports fans, while 56% would say they are avid fans. So how are key players in sports marketing making plans for 2016?

In Portada’s conversations with industry executives, there was a consistent mention of the ever-evolving landscape of digital marketing. There is no single platform that commands the attention of the entire Hispanic market, so messages and branding must be distributed among broadcast media, social media, and physical locations like stadiums or arenas.

Futbol and Boxing Dominate

Speaking of stadiums and arenas, two sports have proven to be key: Soccer and boxing.

Gustavo Guerra
Gustavo Guerra

Gustavo Guerra, Brand Director for Tecate beer at Heineken USA confirms that the brand is focusing strongly on opportunities in these sports, as it wants “to become synonymous with the biggest games and fights focusing on these moments where fans gather to watch their passion points.” The brand worked on increasing engagement around both sports through bringing the fans physically together, bringing Chivas, the most popular football club in Mexico, for a friendly match in the U.S., hosting online forums for the Mayweather Pacquiao fight, for which Tecate was the exclusive beer sponsor, and hosting viewing parties for other big games or fights.

In 2016, Tecate wants to continue to help fans “have familiar and authentic experiences when they’re enjoying their favorite sport.” Tecate plans to build on the fact that it is the #1 beer in Mexico, and assures us that they’ve “just scratched the surface” in this appeal to Hispanics’ biggest passions.

Language is optional, but relevancy is a must!

Marco López, a partner at agency Elemento L2, agrees that

Marco Lopez
Marco Lopez

soccer is the key to reaching Hispanic audiences in 2016, as staying “culturally relevant with a compelling story” is key to his agency’s strategy. And what about language? “Language is optional, but relevancy is a must!” Lopez also mentioned the power of insight as an alternative to those who cannot acquire the rights for properties or teams, citing Beats by Dre during the World Cup as an example.

But it’s not all about soccer. Tab Bamford, Business Development

Tab Bamford
Tab Bamford

Manager at Teamworks Media, a Chicago based Sports Marketing Agency, suggests that their biggest opportunity for 2016 was non-soccer content. “The market is saturated with really good soccer content already, and there are a lot of other sports that Hispanic fans are excited about and engaging with that marketers and sponsors are neglecting,” Bamford said. And not all sports are created equal, as Bamford highlights that “there are nuances that need to be recognized when talking about different sports, much less with different audiences. Being aware of both the macro audiences and the niches is paramount to succeeding.”

The market is saturated with really good soccer content, and there are a lot of other sports that Hispanic fans are excited about that marketers are neglecting.

(2016 Edition: September 21, 2016!)
Nascar Driver Daniel Suarez (VIDEO)
Total Market or Hispanic Market? Who cares, only Gooolaaazos matter (VIDEO)
Gustavo Aguirre Associate Brand Manager Coors Light at MillerCoors (VIDEO)
Fernando Fiore – Interview (VIDEO)

A Focus on Engagement

What’s more, Hispanic sports fans are not just numerous, but also sophisticated and connected, and demand engaging content about the teams they love says Jose Ortega, Director of Digital Media at Fox.

Jose Ortega
Jose Ortega

Ortega emphasizes Fox’s efforts to engage with Hispanic sports fans “in a more user-friendly way,” providing them with “in-depth articles, behind-the-scenes access, programming grids and results for all the leagues and teams across all sports.” Ortega also highlights the importance of expanding the multi-platform presence, re-launching their website to include “more video and mobile experiences for users.”

Luis Gutierrez
Luis Gutierrez

Luis Gutierrez, Vice President of Sales at GLR Networks, the production and distribution arm of PRISA Radio, also spoke of the importance of engaging with Hispanics, not just exposing them to brands, as they continue to provide “great play-by-play spots analysis” for Chivas, and six other teams in the Mexican Liga through coverage by people like DR.Z and Alex Pazos.

Because Hispanic audiences are so passionate about sports, brands

Crystal Hudson
Crystal Hudson

with little connection to sports must find ways to get in on the action. Crystal Hudson , Principal Officer in Sports & Affinity Marketing at AMTRAK says that in 2016, the brand’s biggest opportunities will be in “partnerships with teams and properties that have specific Hispanic marketing initiatives and programs” like the NY Mets with Los Mets and Washington Wizards with Latin Nights. To Hudson, language does present a challenge, though: “sports sponsorships are expensive, so diversifying messages (i.e. using both Spanish and English across assets) becomes very challenging and cost-prohibitive.”

Jaime Cardenas, CEO of AC&M Group, also notes that merely sponsoring sports teams or events for brand exposure is no longer cost or message-effective, as “the main value of a sports sponsorship comes from engaging with fans to expose them to the sponsor’s message, not only on site at games but also at retail, digital and social channels.”

Cost-Effective Alternatives?

While the Olympics, Euro Cup and Copa America Centenario provide many opportunities for sports sponsorships in 2016, like Amtrak’s Hudson, Cardenas acknowledges that not all clients can afford sports sponsorships,and the challenge for 2016 will be to “find creative ways to leverage the heightened awareness to a particular sport or event and turn it into an engagement opportunity for our client’s brand.”

The main value of a sports sponsorship comes from engaging with fans to expose them to the sponsor’s message, not only on site at games but also at retail, digital and social channels.
jaime cardenas
Jaime Cardenas

Cardenas also speaks about the  difficulties associated with customizing messages to targeted fan segments, because “the challenge has always been that the more you customize the message the more expensive it is to produce, and the more waste in terms of exposure.” Instead of giving up on hyper-targeted messages, Cardenas’s agency will be working on delivering those messages through less expensive options.

AC&M is currently exploring one of those options: youth soccer clubs. The agency has found that in terms of ethnicity, household income, age and gender, these clubs hit the mark, providing that magical combination of “content (sport, athlete, league, team, etc.), language (Spanish vs English), and consumer (Mexican, Colombian, Dominican U.S. born, foreign born, moms, millennials, etc)” that so many agencies covet. And it’s no secret that targeting youth is an effective way to spread a message, as young adults are some of the most connected people around.

A seasoned sports agency CEO, Cardenas is well aware of the challenges that 2016 will bring any brand or agency looking to appeal to the Hispanic market. “When you look at how diverse the Hispanic market is, and the number of options available from sports properties and events, it is easy to understand why sports marketing for Hispanics is more complex than for general market. However, we also know that if you find the right mix the results justify why it is important to use sports to connect with Hispanic consumers.” We couldn’t have said it better ourselves.


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

By Gretchen Gardner

U.S./U.S.-Hispanic Markets

NEW ARRIVALS: Cross-screen data management platform (DMP) Lotame announced the appointment of Mike Woosley as Chief Operating Officer. Woosley has more than 15 years of experience in the tech industry, having served as the CFO of Advertising.com from its beginning until it was sold to Time Warner in 2004, and has plans to help the company expand its international presence and increase sales.

PERION BUYS UNDERTONE. Israeli marketing software company Perion Network Ltd. has acquired American digital advertising company Undertone for US $180 million. Undertone creates digital advertising solutions for brands, and will give Perion, which has focused on partnering with software companies to driving traffic to search engines, a bigger bite of the U.S. digital advertising market. Undertone earlier this year announced the acquisition of argentinian start-up Sparkflow,

UdiseaUNIVISION BRINGS SPANISH-SPEAKING INFLUENCERS TO MILLENIALS: On Wednesday December 2, Univision Digital, the digital division of Univision Communications Inc. (UCI), announced the launch of “Udisea,” a digital video platform catering to multicultural, Spanish-speaking millennials. It is already accessible through Univision.com a YouTube channel. Content will also be broadcasted on social media channels. The content will include short videos and original web series featuring Hispanic and Latin American influencers.

HISPANICS TO ROCK THE VOTE IN 2016: Recode.net put together a fascinating report on the vital role that Hispanic voters will play in the 2016 elections because of their significant digital video and mobile consumption. There are 58 million Hispanics in the US, and while that number rises, it is expected that they will make up 10 percent of the vote in 2016. A Nielsen report reported that Latinos account for an average of 10 million mobile video views per month. And the average Latino spends eight hours every month watching online video — 90 minutes longer than the U.S. average. So what will campaigns do? Reach out via data-driven, programmatic advertising, and anti-ad blocking to reach be sure their messages reach this key demographic.

GRAVITY4 GOES MORE GLOBAL High-frequency marketing cloud Gravity4 has acquired a 93.7% ownership stake in Pixels, an acclaimed multi-screen advertising technology company from Hong Kong, helping Gravity4 enter the coveted South East Asia and Hong Kong markets.  

MADAME PRESIDENT: U.S. Hispanic agency LatinWorks is promoting Christy Kranik to President-CCO after the  departure of Sergio Alcocer. Kranik will have big shoes to fill, but as she was already in charge of account management, media and new business, taking on the creative and planning departments should be a natural fit.

SPANISH SELLS: According to a study by the Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies, Spanish-language advertisements contribute more to the growth of the automotive sector than English-language ads. Less money needed to be spent on Hispanic media than English media to achieve the same growth in total market annual revenue.

LatAm Markets

APPNEXUS EXPANDS LATAM RELATIONSHIP WITH MICROSOFT: Microsoft has announced that it will be increasing its use of AppNexus‘ publisher suite for programmed ads, expanding from 39 to 58 global markets including many Latin American countries. AppNexus bought Real Media Latin America as a part of that effort in June of this year. With the announcement, AppNexus becomes Microsoft’s technology and programmatic sales partner in Bolivia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras,  Paraguay, Uruguay, Venezuela and Vietnam. AppNexus will exclusively represent and be the ad tech platform (programmatic) for Microsoft display and Microsoft app-based ad inventory on MSN, Outlook, Skype, and Xbox, as well as third-party Windows, Windows phone, and Xbox apps inventory within these markets.Additionally, AppNexus will work with local sales units to direct Microsoft ad inventory in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru. In July, Microsoft Advertising announced that it will outsource its advertising sales to Verizon/AOL in most major global markets, including Brazil, and use direct sales and AppNexus in Spanish-speaking Latin America. The latest announcement expands the amount of Latin American countries where AppNexus will be selling programmatically. Portada has also heard that the panregional direct sales team out of Fort Lauderdale will be mostly dismantled.

, a Colombian startup that connects brands with relevant influencers for digital advertising campaigns, has received $2.5 million from investors led by Cisneros Interactive and Velum Ventures to expand operations in Brazil and the United States. Fluvip was launched in 2013 with an initial investment of $50,000, which implies that they’ve made quite a bit of headway in just two years…

SPEAKING OF HEADWAY: Latin American media headwayprogrammatic platform Headway Digital celebrated its fifth anniversary in Buenos Aires last week. The company, which exclusively represents MediaMath in Spanish-speaking Latin America,  was the first of its kind in the region, and has now developed its own technology, operations in 14 countries and taken on more than 120 employees from 25 different countries. Congratulations!

LATAM EARLY ADOPTERS PAY OFF: Cisneros Interactive mobile ad company Adsmovil released information indicating that their programmatic advertising, which they began offering in July, accounts for 8% of the company’s revenue in Latin America. Alberto “Banano” Pardo, CEO, attributed much of this to Brazil and Mexico, which are early tech adopters. 

MORE SALES IN BRAZIL: The world’s second-largest advertising company, Omnicom Group Inc, will pay one billion reais ($270 million) for its DDB Group to buy Brazil’s Grupo ABC, which provides branding services and content in its home country.


Hispanic consumers love music, and they’re more likely than the general U.S. population to use mobile devices. Put those things together and marketers get an emotion-fueled rocket to their hearts and minds. Portada’s Digital Media Correpondent Susan Kuchinskas, on how marketers use music to connect with Hispanic audiences through mobile media.

a stack of colorful guitars
photo: SpeakingLatino.com

T-Mobile is telling its subscribers that they never have to stop the music. In June, the mobile carrier announced that its Music Freedom initiative, saying that its Simple Choice plan would exempt streaming music from its data allowances. It also partnered with Rhapsody to introduce unRadio, an ad-free music service. The service is free to Simple Choice customers on its newest unlimited data service, and for a discounted price of $4 per month for other customers.

Between one fourth and one third of T-Mobile’s subscribers are Hispanic, according to Gabriel Torres, vice president and general manager for T-Mobile USA’s Southeast region, and, citing the familiar studies showing that Hispanics over-index on mobile and use more data, he says, “There’s a very good story in terms of why this is relevant for the Hispanic market.” Although he couldn’t provide details of how these services might be marketed specifically to Hispanics, he adds, “The fact that we are bringing this incredible music offering helps us bring our community together at the same time.”

Selling spots

Buying digital music requires one foot in both worlds. SBD radio, for example, can sell radio/event/digital packages — but the company maintains separate budgets for each of them. Some agencies buy digital music through their digital teams and terrestrial radio through that dedicated team. It’s a tricky decision: Digital music is measurable, like other digital media, but it also is more audience-based, like traditional radio.

Vilma Vale-Brennan

MEC Bravo doesn’t separate terrestrial radio from web-streams of traditional radio stations from pure-play streaming services. In its work for AT&T, for example, “We see it as a holistic channel and we take a holistic approach,” says Vilma Vale-Brennan, managing partner in MEC Bravo. In the planning stage, this approach entails mixing some oranges with some apples.

The agency’s planners must try to understand the different market penetration of its different distribution partners. The AT&T media plan includes a lot of pure-play streaming providers, especially Pandora and iHeartRadio. The media team uses the services’ data to understand the penetration of Hispanic consumers, and then adds up the ratings on terrestrial radio in order come up with an estimated reach on all devices for a particular campaign.

“Combining those two is where the art comes in,” she says.

Station masters

Branded stations are a favored way for companies to reach consumers on streaming media services without interrupting their listening with commercials – and, of course, uninterrupted music is a prime selling point to get listeners to the brand’s station.

Another advantage is that, on branded streaming stations, the brand can at least to some extent own some real estate on the device screen; placements might include a banner at the top of the interface or a skin of the entire interface. Sometimes, the deals include sponsorships of live events, as well.

At this year’s Billboard Latin Music Conference and Awards in Miami, the Pandora Discovery Den Noche de Música Latina was sponsored by State Farm, P&G’s Orgullosa and Sprint. In addition to sponsoring live music performances, the brands offered special activities, gifts and presentations. They brands also used Pandora’s Mixtapes solution to create special stations with branded banners.

Another reason that branded music stations are so compelling to advertisers is that they offer an extended period of time in which a brand, through curation of the music, can evoke emotion in the listener – emotion that can be transferred to the brand itself.

Natalia Borges
Natalia Borges

“Music connects at an emotional level,” says Natalia Borges, vice president of marketing for Batanga Media. Custom stations are “a way we can feature music that speaks to the essence of the brand.” For example, Batanga worked with its editors to create a station to help Latina moms get their babies settled into bed at night. Setting this sweet moment to music not only helped the moms accomplish a crucial nightly task, the music itself also created sweet associations with the Huggies brand, with its own brand essence of sweet.

For Corona Extra’s Fill Your Summer 2014 campaign, Batanga created a station designed to evoke the fun and excitement of summer. Promotion for Batanga custom stations may include home page placement, placement on “hot radios” or “top stations” lists and, depending on the campaign targeting listeners via audio, video or display ads on Batanga’s mobile app.

Close to 90 percent of all music streams from Batanga take place via its mobile app, according to Borges, and clickthrough rates from mobiles, as well as engagement rates, are consistently higher on mobile – as much as 68 percent higher. “Video in any environment performs very well,” Borges says, and so do high-impact units such as interactive ads or full-page ads.

A campaign for McDonalds last year used the interactivity available in mobile ad units to good effect. The brand collaborated with Batanga to create a customized music awards on the platform that let consumers vote for their favorite artists across a variety of genres. A twist added by Batanga was creating the genres based on its own audience data instead of using standard genres. Fans could vote from within the ad unit, so that they did not have to pause their music listening.

MEC Bravo wants to create its own custom station ad unit that it could distribute to different steaming music services, although there are still details, both technical and business, to work out. The music in the channel could be tightly targeted to consumers and, ideally, be highly attractive to the target market. Ads could be included in the channel, so that they’d be native to the user experience, according to Vale-Brennan. This could turn out to be, MEC Bravo hopes, “a seamless, integrated way of capturing their attention in an organic way.”

Genre targeting

Spanish Broadcasting System (SBS) relies on its mobile app, La Musica, to power streaming services from the 20 U.S. terrestrial radio stations it operates. This combination of terrestrial radio, station websites and mobile app lets the company offer cross-platform campaigns, although the company maintains separate budgets for different channels, according to Max Ramirez, vice president of digital media for SBS Interactive, the company’s digital arm.

Max Ramirez
Max Ramirez

“We have a better opportunity to leverage relationships [with advertisers], and we can tie in digital with whatever they have going on. Maybe they buy a concert that includes radio but also some digital elements,” Ramirez says.

La Musica is used to run national digital campaigns and local advertising, and it also frequently carries custom stations for brands; a Dunkin Donuts-branded station within the app is just about to launch. Clients can select the type of music to be played according to artists, genres or DJs. The music streams ad-free and the advertiser gets a custom tab on the app that can lead to interactive functions.

For Vida Lexus, the automaker’s Hispanic-oriented lifestyle portal, the sponsored tab included a dealer locator with click-to-call. The stations can also run display ads, as well as one-click connections to the brand’s Facebook page and Twitter feed.

SBS Lexus channelMost mobile music services can’t yet target consumers according to their interests or even registration information. But the importance of musical genre for targeting should not be overlooked. In the case of SBS, its various stations draw in different segments of Hispanic consumers. For example, in Los Angeles, La Raza 97.9 attracts more Spanish-dominant listeners, while Mega 96.3 has a more bilingual listener base. Says Ramirez of the latter listeners, “They’re English-first, but still consuming Latino culture.” And the key to reaching the diverse Hispanic audience, he says, is, “It needs to be in-culture, which is more important that in-Spanish or in-English.”

Indeed, with the wide variety of acculturation levels and language preferences in this market, finding the right messaging and language can be tricky.

“Across acculturation levels, music preferences change,” points out Maria Lopez-Knowles, CMO of Pulpo Media (recently acquired by Entravision). She notes that Pandora is most popular among English-dominant Hispanics. According to Pulpo’s analysis, it’s these bilingual, bicultural, English-dominant Hispanics that are driving mobile adoption and penetration. Their hybridity is reflected in the fact that they listen to English and Spanish music.

Maria Lopez-Knowles
Maria Lopez-Knowles

Even the most acculturated Hispanics still love Latin music, according to Lopez-Knowles, as well as American pop. She likes to say that, to reach these influencers, you should “speak to them in English, but wink at them in Spanish.” That goes for music selections, as well. When creating custom radio stations, she says, go for Spanglish.

Apple and Comcast are rumored to be cutting a deal that would send a mix of live TV and on-demand video through an Apple set-top box. That’s just the latest in a series of partnerships or acquisitions that could someday let advertisers buy, traffic and analyze online video and TV content together. A look at how agencies and digital vendores are preparing for the TV-Video Convergence.

Nielsen is partnering with Videology to use data to help TV advertisers target young audiences that are watching more digital channels. Comcast bought FreeWheel. And Adap.tv, owned by AOL, launched a programmatic TV buying platform, which it says lets advertisers use data to buy the same audiences online and on TV.

This is clearly the path we’re heading down: to make video buying more seamless, efficient, and data-driven
MarlaSkiko, SMG Multicultural
MarlaSkiko, SMG Multicultural

“This is clearly the path we’re heading down: to make video buying more seamless, efficient, and data-driven. It’s all video buying. We want to use data to inform buying video wherever we’re buying it,” says Marla Skiko, EVP and director of digital innovation for SMG Multicultural.

How close are we to true convergence of the buying process? Not all that close: These deals are about helping TV content owners target ads in the digital world. There is technology and business challenges to work through for brands, agencies, content creators and vendors alike before digital and TV will become apples and apples.

Could DSPs buy TV spots?

SMG, part of the Publicis Group, has access to sister agency VivaKi’s Audience on Demand platform. Skiko says, “They are running hard against trying to buy TV on the platform. It started with display and then folded in social.” She thinks that eventually, anything that can be bought programmatically will be –including TV.

She says that tools like comScore validated Campaign Essentials and Nielsen Campaign Rating already let advertisers talk about online video and TV in the same way, albeit through the TV focus. When placing a GRP focus on digital video, she says, “If you want to buy Hispanic 18 to 49, let’s look at what you actually got of that demographic that you were trying to reach. All of it is still bought on the CPM basis, its’ the nature of talking about the reach and frequency dynamic.”

One of the common criticisms of Nielsen’s and comScore’s audience tools, she adds is, “It’s awesome in the verification but not in the planning phase.” DSPs still need to use their own data together with third-party sources to plan campaigns.

Some agencies — including SMG Multicultural — already are converging their TV and digital video teams for planning and buying.

Business roadblocks

Mark Dominiak, PACO
Mark Dominiak, PACO

Some agencies — including SMG Multicultural — already are converging their TV and digital video teams for planning and buying. Sometimes, this is easier for smaller agencies. Says Mark Dominiak, media strategist PACO, a multicultural agency that handles digital, TV and social media, “At our agency, it’s small enough to where we don’t have the luxury of a department. We have a small group of people who serve all the media goals of the agency. When you have people who are working on all facets, it works to your advantage. There’s no siloing.”

Analytics — the lack of common metrics between broadcast and digital channels — could be the biggest barrier to converged buying. Says Jeremy Helfand, vice president of video monetization at Adobe, “What is the common currency I can transact across all channels? A lot of our customers are using Adobe Analytics to understand the, digital audience but ultimately market needs to go to a true cross-platform currency to allow dollars to flow freely across wherever the audiences are. The consumers are not different between the TV screen and the screen in their hands, so how can we truly monetize that experience across those various channels in an easier way?”

Adobe recently introduced a major upgrade to Adobe Marketing Cloud that converges six products, including Adobe Analytics. Adobe Primetime, the sell-side platform that lets broadcasters package TV content for digital distribution, can take advantage of customer data in the analytics product to target advertising delivered with video content via Primetime. But there’s no way within the product suite to combine this with GRP data from Nielsen. Ashley Still, director of product management for Primetime, says companies could “try” to do this internally.

An agency like us, we almost never talk about how many rating points you are delivering. It’s about, how well does the buy you manufactured serve your marketing objective?

It might behoove agencies to focus less on trying to match gross rating points to CPMs, anyway. Says Dominiak, “An agency like us, we almost never talk about how many rating points you are delivering. It’s about, how well does the buy you manufactured serve your marketing objective? GRPs and impressions are an output you look at but are not critical to deciding if this is a good plan.”

Beyond the data plays of Adobe, Comcast and others lies a deeper question for Hispanic marketers, Skiko says. “Our ideal goal would be to rely on first-party data as much as possible.” That could be derived from a tracked visit to a Spanish-language website, search in Spanish or from a data partner. However, she says, “We need more at scale. Creating pools of first-party data is helpful to enable some of these platforms. When Nielsen or AOL makes an announcement, one of the first questions we want to ask is, ‘Have you thought about how to enable this for multicultural audiences?”

In other words, while the convergence of TV and digital ads is a blip on the horizon, Hispanic marketers have an even longer journey to get there.

No pricing convergence

Photo: James CridlandEven if the metrics and analytics problems get worked out, no one sees the prices of video ads and TV spots converging. But that does not mean that online video will be cheaper than broadcast. Already, we’re seeing some high-value online video reaping higher rates than TV scatter ads — although it’s hard to compare due to the different pricing and metrics.

Increasingly, broadcasters are selling digital as part of their upfronts. For example, NBC offered a huge digital component for the Sochi Olympics, with a website and three different apps that offered a mix of live streaming of TV, video clips, news and custom content.

According to Julie De Traglia, SVP, digital and broadcast marketing research for NBCUniversal, Sochi Olympics broadcast and video ads were sold as a package, and this will be increasingly the case for premium content that’s delivered across channels. “Advertisers buy multiplatform,” she says.

This kind of packaging, to some extent, obviates the need for convergence of TV and video within DSPs and analytics programs — especially while the demand for premium video outstrips the supply, especially in the Hispanic market. Adds Skiko, “Some video may be on parity with television, depends on how the deal is made. And there shouldn’t be a distinction. We have video buyers and we are about to enter another video upfront. You won’t talk about the TV Upfronts anymore.”