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A summary for Corporate Marketers, Media Sales Executives and Advertising Agencies to see what clients are moving into the Hispanic market and/or targeting Hispanic consumers right now.

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      • Coca-Cola

H7R37Fc8_400x400Coca-Cola Co. has put its U.S. media-buying and -planning business in review. Incumbent Starcom Mediavest Group will participate along with three agencies that Coke works with globally: UM, MediaCom and Carat/Dentsu. The review is expected to conclude late this year after formal presentations in mid-July.Coca-Cola spent more than US$406 million on measured media in the U.S. last year, according to Kantar Media. Spending is expected to jump this year as the company implements a global cost-cutting program with some savings poured into media.The review comes as SMG deals with the recent loss of big accounts including Microsoft, U.S. planning forAnheuser-Busch InBev and global planning for Mars Inc.

      • P&G

kYrPoJnL_400x400Procter & Gamble Co. is planning to cut at least US$500 million from agency fees under a new drive to reduce the number of agencies it works with. P&G total spending on agency fees is estimated at around US$1 billion. The move comes as P&G’s top-line results disappointed Wall Street, with organic revenue growth rising 1% last quarter, below the 2% projected by many analysts, and as P&G plans to step up its headcount reductions. By the end of the current fiscal year in June, P&G would hit the high end of its current plan to have reduced non-manufacturing headcount by 22% over two years. Now, it’s stepping up planned job cuts to a 25% to 30% reduction by the end of next fiscal year, exclusive of the impact of divestitures.The firm has already announced divestitures include Iams, Duracell, DDF, the Ace bleach business overseas and a number of small fragrance brands, such as the Avril Lavigne license.

      • Wells Fargo

N5L2uOTF_400x400Wells Fargo has launched its new campaign, a BBDO effort, which leans into the advertising trend of embracing same-sex couples.The ad, which was directed by Lance Acord and edited by Exile’s Matthew Murphy, ends with a female voice saying, “Everyone works hard for a reason. Working together, we can help you prepare financially for when two becomes three.” The tagline remains, “Together we’ll go far.”The effort also includes social media marketing and print, outdoor, digital and radio ads. Wells Fargo did not reveal the cost of the ads, but the bank spends about US$175 million on media annually, according to Kantar Media.For Wells Fargo, the goal is to reflect the diversity of its customers and get beyond products and services to tell emotional stories that illustrate universal truths, according to chief marketing officer Jamie Moldafsky. The ad with the lesbian couple, for instance, captures emotions that any couple feels when adopting a child.Here’s a look at one of the new ads:
https://youtu.be/DxDsx8HfXEk

      • Huggies

descarga (3)Kimberly-Clark Corp.’s Huggies is re-launching its Huggies Snug & Dry, the brand’s biggest and least-expensive line, which now touts “12 Hour Protection” and improved absorbency. The brand estimates that around two-thirds of moms in North America are “value moms.” Hispanic moms, are more likely to fall into this group, though they’re also very brand loyal.Online at Amazon.com or Target.com, the new Snug & Dry sells at just under 21 cents per diaper with a “Subscribe & Save” discount on a 192-count Size 4 pack. That compares to 24 cents for Pampers Baby Dry diapers from rival Procter & Gamble Co., though P&G’s Luvs remains cheaper still at 17 cents.The Snug & Dry relaunch includes an “Ultra” product sold exclusively at Walmart and Walmart.com, with a “unique quilted liner” that promises to lock away moisture better than regular Snug & Dry. Ultra is priced as low as 22 cents per diaper for Size 4 at Walmart.com. A new TV ad for that product line launched promising “ultra protection at an ultra value.” Huggies also will improve skincare and comfort for its more premium Little Snugglers and Little Movers diapers.

      • Open English

3fo5L5L9_reasonably_smallOpen English is expanding to the U.S., bringing an affordable teacher-led instructional model to Hispanics nationwide. The launch of the company’s U.S. Hispanic efforts will be fueled by a national advertising and marketing campaign.After its success throughout Latin America and Brazil, Open English will now target the U.S. Hispanic market investing in an audience that represents the fastest growing minority population.Open English offers an innovative approach to learning English complete with unlimited live classes with native English speakers and over 2,000 hours of engaging multi-media content. This makes for a convenient, effective and affordable way to learn the language.The company’s model has proven disruptive to the marketplace with over 300,000 students across 20 countries.To learn more, visit www.openenglish.com and follow us on Facebook (Open English), Twitter (@openenglish) and YouTube (Open English TV).

      • Pepsi ‘Limon’

descarga (4)Pepsi will launch a new cola made with real sugar and lime juice that is aimed squarely at Hispanics. The line extension, called Pepsi Limon, will be available at stores beginning May 18 in Chicago, California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas.Pepsi Limon is made using real lime juice and cane sugar, unlike the previous U.S. version that was artificially flavored. The idea came from an internal Latino/Hispanic employee group called Adelante, whose mission is to create a diverse culture within PepsiCo.The launch will be supported by in-store marketing, radio ads, PR, digital and sampling. The ad agency handling the line extension is SA Studios Global, while PMK BNC is leading PR.

Mario-CordonThe advantage of Open English is that the product has a real and huge “appeal”, says Open English CMO Mario Cordón. How was this “appeal” built?

The various advertising campaigns in different media platforms that have been running in Latin America and in the  U.S. Hispanic market are based on “a little mocking” type of humor, in Cordon’s words. All ads were produced in-house based on the strategy of reaching each and every single  person who would like to learn English. “We do not seek a particular segment, all demographics in Latin America recognize the value of learning another language such as English, either from a doctor, a student, an artist …, ” says Cordón.

 

persueychon.open.englishCordón himself mostly writes ads, as he did with the last ones “Spaghetti Western” and “Persueychon“. As for a campaigns’ creativity, he assures that the construction of dynamic stories and characters has worked out really well ” Characters already have names. The most famous  are called “Wachu ” and Open English “el calvito ” is Andrés Moreno, who is actually the founder of the company. There is a very fun dynamic there, because Andrés dominates perfect English and Wachu is not aware that his English is not very good. We were very lucky to have a great actor like Adrian Lara, who interprets “Wachu” in such a hilarious way.”

 

Portada: So, how would you define the strategy that is being implemented to reach this large audience?

Mario Cordón: “Our strategy is mostly based on asking ourselves more questions like: What will be the best way, in the sense of a  more scalable way to reach the entire region?, but we also try to always focus from a marketing’s point of view on the “performance” aspect. There’s a lot of controversy around the performance-branding debate, but as we see it any of them are totally exclusive.

The strategy has three points:

  1.  From the creative standpoint: going viral and get people to talk about the brand.
  2.  What media mix allows us to do what we want to do.
  3.  How to measure this.

The Media Mix

spaghetti.western.open.englishIn both“Spaghetti Western” and “Persueychon” campaigns, the media mix was based on TV and digital channels. “The big advantage we had is that our social media is really strong. Social Media is also something we do in-house. We have two pages on Facebook: one for Open English and another one for Andrés Moreno. ”

“Our social network accounts have around 3 million fans,” says  Cordón. “So it’s very pleasant to market in an environment with so many fans that are so responsive to the brand. It is very funny to do marketing for us.”

 Portada: How would you define the percentage of investment in each medium?

Mario Cordón: “We do not ask ourselves that question in that way. We do not decide in advance what percentage is going to be TV, what percentage is online. But, we have internally developed econometric models that tell us how much we have to invest. Especially in the mass media outline… . Besides, it’s not the same for us to advertise in January than to do it in September. Then, the percentage suddenly changes. It’s very dynamic. ”

Portada: Do you do programmatic buying in digital media?

Mario Cordón: “No. In digital media, we have direct purchases with specific publishers.We also advertise on Google Display and Facebook.”

Measurement

“Being able to measure productivity becomes very difficult because you set the guidelines but then the audience that follows you will response through phones, websites, everywhere. Then conversions are impossible to measure. That is why we prefer attribution by indirect methods. The best way to describe it is that we like to see the correlation between investment and numbers of students that have signed up, “says Cordón.

To Cordón, the key point is the interaction between the media: ” you invest more on TV and your pay search evolution goes up, then we know that there is an interaction and that we need to quantify it. We see other things as well, such as despite investing more money in online we notice that the index is scarcely up to what we attributed to TV. Then there is another interaction and the only way we have to measure it is with a continuous and consistent effort. ”

[quote] measuring the interaction between TV and digital media is a continuous and consistent effort. [/quote]

Online Video

“Video is critical for us, because people like our characters so much that they love to watch them all the time,” says Cordón. “We plan two types of videos: for engagement and response. And, how to deal with that tension? Testing, testing and more testing. It’s Amazing how sometimes you have a hypothesis, you do a test and it’s totally the opposite. One swears for example that a particular landing page will be the best, and then it is not. Or the other way round. It is a whole process of becoming a little bit more humble and say “well … let’s try.”

 

Open English, the online English language school, has added two senior executives to its management team. Bart Catalane joins the company as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) while Sam Peterson will serve as the new Chief Technology Officer (CTO).

The decision to add these seasoned executives to the Open English management team comes at the dawn of what is expected to be another year of explosive growth. “The new additions to our management team will give Open English the bandwidth it needs to tackle new regions in 2014.

According to the company “These two recent hires confirm that Miami is on its way to becoming a global center of innovation, continuing to attract tech start-up companies and top executives from around the US.” “Open English is proud to be headquartered in Miami and we are excited to take part in its role as an incubator of innovation,” added Andres Moreno.

Doing business in Brazil is not only good business, but very rewarding. Alas, it is no easy feat.

At least, that was the consensus during an afternoon session at the last day of the Latin American Advertising & Media Summit in Miami, where panelists, Brazilians and non-Brazilians, shared some light on what to do  -and not do- when doing business in Brazil.

“Brazil is very rewarding, but it is really difficult,” said Mario Cordon, the Guatemala-born CMO of Open English. “There are a lot of similarities with the U.S., but there are also lots of differences too.” Cordon, whose web-based course of English has been a success in Brazil, said doing business in the country is unlike doing business in the rest of Latin America. “Sometimes Brazil feels like a different continent; a place that just happens to be in Latin America.”

Other panelists included Gastón Taratuta, the CEO of IMS Corporate, a digital marketing agency that does work for high-profile American companies, including Twitter and Netflix. Taratuta, who is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese and English, also spoke of the differences between Brazilians and the rest of Latin America, and while he said speaking Portuguese is crucial to succeed there, the single most important thing is to find the right management team to operate locally.

Other piece of advice came from Diego Terán, managing director of MEC. “Brazil is not really one market. If you launch in Brazil, you have to pick your region; it’s more like doing business in the U.S.”

Panelists also touched on media and how Brazil -along with Argentina and Mexico- continue to be a TV-centric market. In Brazil, said Taratuta, 60 cents of every media dollar is taken by Globo; and Internet advertising has grown mostly because Globo didn’t want to focus on digital. An example on how small, dynamic agencies are helping change this landscape is IMS itself. According to Taratuta, when Netflix entered Brazil, it was going to allocate 80% of their media on TV and 20% in digital. “In the end, they ended up doing the opposite: 80% on digital and 20% on TV,” he said.

Among the advantages cited by the panelists of doing business in Brazil:

  • High-penetration of credit and debit cards
  • Brazilians are tech-savvy
  • High-penetration and adoption of Smartphones
  • Several important cities, not just one like in many Latin American Countries.
  • e-commerce is well developed
  • Brazilians are leapfrogging, skipping the landline and going straight to mobile; skipping PCs and going to tablets

 

Doing business in Brazil is not only good business, but very rewarding. Alas, it is no easy feat.

At least, that was the consensus during an afternoon session at the last day of the Latin American Advertising & Media Summit in Miami, where panelists, Brazilians and non-Brazilians, shared some light on what to do  -and not do- when doing business in Brazil.

“Brazil is very rewarding, but it is really difficult,” said Mario Cordon, the Guatemala-born CMO of Open English. “There are a lot of similarities with the U.S., but there are also lots of differences too.” Cordon, whose web-based course of English has been a success in Brazil, said doing business in the country is unlike doing business in the rest of Latin America. “Sometimes Brazil feels like a different continent; a place that just happens to be in Latin America.”

Other panelists included Gastón Taratuta, the CEO of IMS Corporate, a digital marketing agency that does work for high-profile American companies, including Twitter and Netflix. Taratuta, who is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese and English, also spoke of the differences between Brazilians and the rest of Latin America, and while he said speaking Portuguese is crucial to succeed there, the single most important thing is to find the right management team to operate locally.

Other piece of advice came from Diego Terán, managing director of MEC. “Brazil is not really one market. If you launch in Brazil, you have to pick your region; it’s more like doing business in the U.S.”

Panelists also touched on media and how Brazil -along with Argentina and Mexico- continue to be a TV-centric market. In Brazil, said Taratuta, 60 cents of every media dollar is taken by Globo; and Internet advertising has grown mostly because Globo didn’t want to focus on digital. An example on how small, dynamic agencies are helping change this landscape is IMS itself. According to Taratuta, when Netflix entered Brazil, it was going to allocate 80% of their media on TV and 20% in digital. “In the end, they ended up doing the opposite: 80% on digital and 20% on TV,” he said.

Among the advantages cited by the panelists of doing business in Brazil:

  • High-penetration of credit and debit cards
  • Brazilians are tech-savvy
  • High-penetration and adoption of Smartphones
  • Several important cities, not just one like in many Latin American Countries.
  • e-commerce is well developed
  • Brazilians are leapfrogging, skipping the landline and going straight to mobile; skipping PCs and going to tablets

 

Mario CordonMario joined Open English after holding the position of Vice President of Marketing and Sales at Kaplan Virtual Education.  His TV campaigns at Kaplan were recognized by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP) with the coveted Gold Hermes Award.  Previously, he held the position of Vice President of Marketing at Levenger, Senior Director of Marketing at Office Depot, and Strategy Consultant at Bain & Co.  Mario earned his Engineering degree at Lehigh University where he graduated Suma Cum Laude and his MBA at Duke University where he was awarded the Keller Scholarship.

Interview with Mario Cordon

Portada: Tell us a bit about your career so far?

Mario Cordon: I’ve been fortunate to have a diverse career.  I’ve worked in Latin America, Europe and the United States across a range of industries including Online Education, Ecommerce, Retail, Consulting, High Tech, Pharmaceuticals, and Newspapers.

Mypost-MBA career started when I joined Bain & Company, one of the top three firms in Strategy Consulting, where I advised Fortune 500 companies in matters related to growth and Mergers and Acquisitions.  As many consultants, I ended up transitioning back to the client side.For the past seven years or so, I have been able to work on a mix of Direct Marketing and Branding initiatives.  At Office Depot, for example, I spent several years in the Direct Marketing division with Revenues of $1.5+ Billion and very large scale marketing operations in a multi-channel environment. My biggest contribution was using Marketing Science to change the marketing mix at a business that was running flat for four years in a row so we could quickly engineer a turnaround and drive growth rates of 5% to 9% at the time. While at Kaplan Virtual Education, I worked extensively on successfully integrating branding and lead generation.  Our Kaplan Academy TV campaigns received the coveted Gold Hermes Award from the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals in the USA.

I then joined Open English in June of 2011with a high level of excitement about Andres Moreno’s vision to create the leading online English school in the world. At the time, Open English was in a true start-up phase and had recently raised its first round of funding from VCs. During the following 24 months, I found myself in the fortuitous position to help create one of the fastest growing and most exciting brands in Latin America today, fueling triple digit growth in revenuestwo years in a row and a building a massive fan base (we have over 1 million fans on facebook- and growing).  Our creative efforts paid off, resulting in one of the most viral TV campaigns in the region.  I love visiting Latin America and observing the multiple ways in which our audience engages with our TV creative concepts.  It’s so energizing to hear people shout “Eeeexito!”in true Open English style as I’m boarding an airplane in Miami or any city in the region, or joke about Repollo/Rechickenat restaurants, or sing “The books on the table, table.”   And the experience is even more rewarding knowing that all our TV ads were developed in-house.  And now we are actively writing our next chapter in the history of Open English.  Stay tuned – exciting things to come!

Portada: What makes an excellent CMO that targets U.S. Hispanic and Latin American audiences?

Mario Cordon: Becoming an excellent CMO that targets the US Hispanic and Latin American audiences is quite a challenge for two main reasons.

  • First, Marketing continues to evolve at a very rapid pace.  This is certainly not your  Father’s Marketing, so to speak.  The CMO has to be versed not only in traditional media but also in fast evolving online, mobile, and social media.
  • Second, the Latin American region is large and complex and continues to evolve along multiple dimensions (the same is true of the US Hispanic segment).

In light of these two reasons, my Top 10 list for an excellent CMO would include the following:

1.     Branding Guru and Profits Rain Maker – the CMO must go beyond being just a Branding Guru.  The has to be able to drive a profit center not just a cost center.  The CMO has to be able to focus on the business, not just on Marketing.This person should rise up to the challenge of driving a high ROI on Marketing activities.

2.     Left brain thinking and right brain thinking – must be creative but also quantitative.  Just one or the other is not enough.

3.     Have creative courage – mediocre creativity is not a trademark of a good CMO.  He or she must have the courage to explore new creative boundaries to break away from the pack.

4.     Community builder – an excellent CMO not only builds a community of customers but also builds win/win partnerships with internal customers (e.g., Sales), vendors, influencers and companies that can complement the go to market model.

5.     Situational awareness – there’s a lot of context to a brand.  Each brand has a history, a path dependence,  ameaning among multiple segments, and a place within a larger environment.  The CMO must have a very keen sense of the brand’s situation in order to make the best decisions to build brand equity.  One false move can have very detrimental consequences.

6.     A steward of customer engagement and experience – the CMO can’t stop at simply driving consumer engagement.  He or she has to be an advocate for a fantastic customer experience along all touch points with the brand, the product and the company.  There is no other way to drive a high Net Promoter Score and the rewards that come along with it.

7.     A wizard at marketing attribution – given the rise of digital media and multi-channel marketing, the art of attribution has become very complicated.  Understanding the ROI of each element of the marketing mix is a daunting task.  Unfortunately, it is also a mandatory task to achieve reasonable returns on marketing spend.  An excellent CMO understands how to arrive at the right attribution model.  He or she can smell mis-attribution a mile away.

8.     An orchestrator of the Marketing Value Chain – in today’s world just knowing advertising isn’t enough.  The CMO must have a solid grasp of the entire marketing value chain, including but not limited to:  PR, media planning, marketing analytics, market research, online reputation management, social media, creative development, financial modeling.  The CMO doesn’t have to be the expert in each part of the value chain, but he or she must understand how to build and orchestrate all parts of the value chain to deliver optimal results.

9.     Deep cultural and geographic understanding – Latin America is a region displaying mega trends.  The emerging middle class, the rate of broadband and mobile penetration, and the explosion in consumer credit are giving rise to unprecedented access to brands (whether local or global).  Does your CMO have a clear vision for how to tap into the confluence of these favorable trends?  However, the extent to which these forces are playing out differs by country.  Does your CMO have a good understanding of these differences or is he or she playing the wrong game in important markets?

10.  Be a true leader, not just another big shot.

Portada: Why are you qualified to talk about panregional and Latin American marketing/advertising?

Mario Cordon: Today Open English is one of the largest buyers of advertising on pan-regional cable in Latin America, one of the brands with the highest levels of social media engagement across Latin America, and possibly the fastest growing brand across the entire region.

A summary for Media Sales Executives and Advertising Agencies to see what clients are moving into the Latin American market and/or targeting Latin American consumers right now.

HSBC – Mindshare / Global ::: The Palace Luxury Outlet – Argentina ::: PageGroup – Argentina ::: Tramontina – JWT / Brazil ::: Volkswagen – CP Proximity / Spain ::: Thomas Nelson – Francisco ::: Open English

thomas.nelsonThomas Nelson

The publisher and producer of Christian books, bibles and Videos is introducing a marketing campaign to promote the Spanish-language book “Francisco” on the recently elected pople Francis I. The advertising promotional campaign starting on May 7th in the U.S. and Mexico comprehends:

  •     Radio Interviews in key Markets (Miami, Puerto Rico, South Texas, Mexico, Los Angeles)
  •     TV product placement (Morning Shows – Mexico, Miami, Puerto Rico, Los Angeles)
  •     Online Ads (Adwords)
  •     Online Ads (Yahoo, Univision)
  •     Online Video Ads (Youtube and Pay per view content outlets)

“Francisco” will also be promoted through Thomas Nelson direct mailed catalogs.     Thomas Nelson is the sixth largest American trade publisher and the world’s largest Christian publisher.

open.englishOpen English

Open English, the online and off-line English-language school originally founded in Caracas, Venezuela, is going to soon target prospects in the U.S. Hispanic market and Spain. Open English has already done substantial marketing and advertising in Latin America, including in Brazil where it is a top 15 cable Advertisers. Mario Cordon, Open English’s Chief Marketing Officer, will be speaking at Portada’s Latin American Advertising and Media Summit in Miami on June 4-5.

 

REINO UNIDO HSBCHSBC – Global

HSBC has chosen WPP´s Mindshare to handle its global media buying and planning account. Mindshare retains the estimated USD 600 million global account after a review that began last fall.

 

 

The Palace Luxury Outlet – Argentina

The Palace Luxury Outlet has chosen the Argentinean agency Quiroga as its media agency. Quiroga will be in charge of the media planning and buying in the country.

PageGroup – Argentina

Jasper + Asociados has been named by PageGroup and its brands (Page Executive, Michael Page,Page Personnel and Page Interim)its communication and PR agency in Argentina.

Tramontina – Brazil

JWT will work with Tramontina in Brazil as its creative agency. The account will be managed by JWT Porto Alegre.

volkswagen.logoVolkswagen – Spain

CP Proximity Spain has won the Volkswagen Finance account after a review. The agency will be in charge of the communication, advertising, branding, marketing, CRM, events, shop marketing, campaings, and digital operations in Spain.

Nora Guardiola will be in charge of the account in CP Proximity and Juanma Ramirez will be in charge of the media planning and buying.

 

samsung.boltSamsung – Global

Samsung has announced a deal with Usain Bolt. The athlete will be the image of Samsung´s new global campaign for its camera NX300.

 

 

 

 

burgerBBVA – Burger King – Global

La Liga BBVA, a professional division of the Spanish football league, has once again partnered with the Burger King brand and Pepsi for a promotion aimed at engaging soccer fans.

Building upon the 2012 La Liga promotion, guests will have the opportunity to celebrate their favorite soccer teams and players at participating Burger King restaurants and earn chances to win prizes in an in-restaurant scratch and win game as well as an online Facebook game. The Facebook game is free and available to everyone who downloads the app. Scratch & Win game pieces are included with the purchase of a qualified combo meal.

Learn more about crucial strategies from advertising and media luminaries targeting Latin American and Hispanic audiences. Book now for our Latam Advertising and Media Summit, a required event for any marketing professional.

A summary for Corporate Marketers, Media Sales Executives and Advertising Agencies to see what clients are moving into the Hispanic market and/or targeting Hispanic consumers right now.

 

  • Thomas Nelson
    Thomas NelsonThe publisher and producer of Christian books, bibles and Videos is introducing a marketing campaign to promote the Spanish-language book “Francisco, el primer papa Latinoamericano” (by Mario Escobar) on the recently elected pope Francis I. The advertising promotional campaign starting on May 7th in the U.S. and Mexico comprehends:
    -Radio Interviews in key Markets (Miami, Puerto Rico, South Texas, Mexico, Los Angeles)
    – TV product placement (Morning Shows – Mexico, Miami, Puerto Rico, Los Angeles)
    – Online Ads (Adwords)
    – Online Ads (Yahoo, Univision)
    – Online Video Ads (Youtube and Pay per view content outlets)
    – “Francisco” will also be promoted through Thomas Nelson direct mailed catalogs.
    Thomas Nelson is the sixth largest American trade publisher and the world’s largest Christian publisher.

 

  • J3/Identity  Edwin Camacho is the new Group Media Director Multicultural Division at J3 Identity. The position was previously occupied by Malena Bustelo who left Identity last fall to join Carat as SVP Group Media Director, Multicultural.

 

  • Open English
    Open EnglishOpen English, the online and off-line English-language school originally founded in Caracas, Venezuela, is going to soon target prospects in the U.S. Hispanic market and Spain. Open English has already done substantial marketing and advertising in Latin America, including in Brazil where it is a top 15 cable Advertisers. Mario Cordon, Open English’s Chief Marketing Officer, will be speaking at Portada’s Latin American Advertising and Media Summit in Miami on June 4-5.

 

  • Absolut Mexico
    Absolut MexicoAbsolut Vodka is bringing its limited edition bottle design Absolut Mexico to the United States for the first time. The bottle debuted in Mexico last year. The release of Absolut Mexico is the latest limited edition offering from the vodka brand and pays homage to Mexican culture and multicultural heritage. This design was created in partnership with Dr. Lakra, one of Mexico’s most renowned contemporary artists and tattooists from Oaxaca, Mexico.  The work of Dr. Lakra has been featured in exhibitions and museums around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Hammer Museum and the Walker Art Center.For Absolut Mexico, Dr. Lakra combines three legendary icons from ancient Mayan culture — Hurakan (Hurricane), Kukulkan (Serpent) and Balam (Jaguar) — and brings them to life on the Absolut bottle through a modern artistic lens that represents Mexico today.

 

  • Del Taco
    Del Taco has opened its first restaurant in Alabama, opening its doors on April 3 in Dothan, the Birmingham Business Journal reports.  The new Dothan Del Taco, located at 4700 W. Main St. in the Publix shopping center, features a 72-seat dining room, Del Taco’s new salsa bar and drive thru that will be open 24-hours.This is the first of 20 Del Taco restaurants planned by Del Taco franchisee and developer/operator Larry Blumberg & Associates which operates 68 hotels in 11 states, representing the Marriott and Hilton brands.  In addition to the first location in Dothan, Larry Blumberg & Associates is planning at least a dozen locations in Alabama including Huntsville, Montgomery, Birmingham and Tuscaloosa. In Florida, the company is planning locations in Tallahassee and Jacksonville. The Del Taco, menu includes Mexican offerings of tacos, burritos, quesadillas and nachos as well as American favorites like hamburgers, crinkle-cut fries and shakes. Del Taco also serves breakfast featuring a full line of breakfast burritos.

 

  • Goya  Foods and Beech Nut
    Goya Foods and Beech-Nut launch a unique joing line of authentic, nutritious latin-flavored babyfoods made with Hispanic moms in mind. The joint announcement was made by Beech-Nut President Jeff Boutelle and Bob Unanue, President of Goya Foods.“Our research shows that Hispanic moms have been waiting for just such an offering, which combines the authentic, traditional Latin flavors Goya is famous for with Beech-Nut’s nutritious, natural ingredients free of preservatives,” said Mr. Boutelle. “Our products are as close as possible to home-made, and that’s very important to Hispanic families.”“The Beech-Nut/Goya line of baby food offers mom the best of both worlds,” Mr. Unanue said.

 

  • Novartis
    Swiss drug maker Novartis is taking a sassy new tack to win converts to its oral multiple sclerosis  treatment, Gilenya. Its “Hey MS, Take This!” campaign shows patients sticking out their tongues with Gilenya capsules on them to show their willingness to fight back against the neurological condition. An image from a video ad from the Novartis campaign for its multiple sclerosis drug Gilenya. The campaign, which begun last week,  is aimed at younger people with multiple sclerosis, a chronic autoimmune disease with symptoms like fatigue, difficulty in walking and blurred or double vision. The campaign will be in national print outlets, including a half-dozen national magazines like People, Shape and Self, and on the Web sites of women’s magazine. A television-style online video will also be available on social media outlets.“MS strikes in the prime of life, and many patients use the Web and social media to connect,” said Dagmar Rosa-Bjorkeson, head of Novartis’s multiple sclerosis unit. “Many are now being diagnosed in their 20s and 30s, and early treatment makes the most impact, so we are trying to target those people who are active and digitally savvy.”Novartis is trying to set the Gilenya campaign apart from other pharmaceutical advertising.All such ads must conform to federal regulatory strictures that consumers receive balanced information that not only includes the drug’s effectiveness but also enumerates its risks in consumer-friendly language. “It’s all about attitude,” explained Mike Devlin, creative director of the campaign’s ad agency, Draftfcb, part of the Interpublic Group, which interviewed the multiple sclerosis patients. Tapestry does media buying and planning. Shortly after Gilenya entered the market, Novartis conducted a smaller marketing effort, with ads in magazines aimed at those with multiple sclerosis as well as a limited placement in national magazines.Its new campaign emphasizes empowered young patients, who use phrases like “No needles for me” and “Take this, you bully” to show their defiant attitude as they cope with the disease.

 

  • Xoom 
    Xoom Corporation, a global online money transfer provider, launched POWR (Pay Only When Received), to Filipino   last month. Today, Xoom announces that the breakthrough initiative is now available to qualifying remitters throughout Latin America and the Caribbean who choose to send with their bank account(https://www.xoom.com/pay-after-received). Xoom claims to be unlike other money transfer companies in that, if the sender pays with a bank account,Xoom will only withdraw the total amount of the money transfer once the money has arrived.”With POWR, we show once again how Xoom is revolutionizing moneytransfers to Latin America and the Caribbean,” says Julian King, Xoom’s Senior Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Development. “When our customers send money and pay with their bank account, Xoom will not charge them until their loved ones get their money.

 

  • Unilever and Northgate Gonzalez Partnership
    Hispanic grocery chain, Northgate Gonzalez Market  and Unilever, have  partnered  to launch a shopper marketing promotion that will  reward consumers who purchase Unilever products with an exclusive performance by  multi-platinum Latin artist, Reyli.

 

  • Esurance
    Esurance has split its media planning and buying responsibilities between Starcom and incumbent Havas Media, following a review, Adweek reports. Starcom will join the brand’s roster in the lead role on strategic media planning for TV, radio, out-of-home, print and digital. Those responsibilities were previously handled in-house. Starcom has also taken on media buying chores for Esurance’s general advertising in TV, radio and out-of-home. Havas, the incumbent on the account, previously handled buying for TV and radio. Out-of-home was handled in-house. Havas Media, formerly MPG, has been on the account since 2005. The agency will retain planning and buying responsibilities for the brand’s direct-response marketing, which includes work in TV, radio and print.Esurance will continue to handle its own digital buying, as well as some tactical digital planning. The other finalists in the review could not be immediately ascertained. Starcom also handles planning and buying for Allstate, which said in May 2011 that it would buy Esurance, a competitor that sells insurance directly to consumers online.

 

  • HSBC
    Mindshare retained the US $400 million global HSBC Account. GroupM (Mindshare’s holding company) defended against finalist Zenith. The decision on the media account comes only a few weeks after HSBC decided to split its creative business among three different agencies. Two of those agencies, JWT and Grey are, like Mindshare, part of WPP. Reportedly, HSBC asked all the new creative agencies to recommend the best media agency and obviously the two WPP agencies recommended their incumbent sibling.

 

  • American Airlines
    American Airlines is cancelled  its direct flights Santo Domingo and Santiago to New York as of April 2. “After careful review of our route network, including performance of individual routes within our global network, American has made the difficult decision to cancel service between New York (JFK) and Santo Domingo (SDQ) and Santiago (STI) effective April 2,  2013″, the company announced. It added that ” American Airlines has proudly served the Dominican Republic for over 37 years. We remain committed to the Dominican Republic and will continue to serve the market through our Miami Hub, where we operate four daily flights to Santo Domingo, three daily flights to Punta Cana (PUJ), one daily flight to Santiago (STI) and Puerto Plata (POP) and one seasonal flight to La Romana (LRM). American Eagle also serves La Romana from Miami.”

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Learn more about the enormous role Online Video can play in the Latin (Latin America and U.S. Hispanic) marketing space. Book now for our Latin Online Video Forum, a required event for any marketing professional.

Rosetta Stone announced that it has acquired Seattle-based  Livemocha, one of the world’s largest online language-learning  communities, for $8.5 million in cash. Bringing with it a robust and  extensible cloud-based learning platform and a community of over 16  million Livemocha members, the transaction accelerates Rosetta Stone’s  transition to cloud-based learning solutions.

“We are in the process of transforming Rosetta Stone to be the most dynamic and ubiquitous technology-based learning platform in the world,”   said President and Chief Executive Officer Steve Swad. “Our acquisition  of Livemocha will help accelerate that transformation. With Livemocha and its vibrant online community on our side, Rosetta Stone will reach       more people and change more lives than ever before.” Rosetta Stone also expects the Livemocha acquisition to help accelerate geographic expansion, as Livemocha’s community is quite global and has a high concentration of users in China, Russia and South America.

The transaction accelerates Rosetta Stone’s transition to cloud-based learning solutions.

TechCrunch says that it’s worth noting that Livemocha has raised a total of $19 million over the course of its existence the past six years. While an acquisition is almost always good news, the company clearly exited for less than it accrued from institutional investors the past six years — and even less than the expected valuation from previous funding rounds.

Other players

The Spanish-language e-learning sector in particular and the language  e-learning sector in general has quite a few players.
Voxy, a language-learning service that  turns real-world content into personalized language lessons, announced a  Series A investment of US $2.8million last year. Voxy belongs to a group of companies who provide different offerings to the  Hispanic demographic mostly through the mobile phone; the group also includes Edioma and Lexicon  Marketing, although the latter is less mobile phone based.
Another player in Latin markets is Open English, which provides off-line and online classes Last year it raised more than US $40 million in a financing round. Open English mostly targets Latin American markets, although launches in the U.S. Hispanic market and Spain are going to happen soon.