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U.S. Advertisers place in Latam Websites to target U.S. Hispanics

Advertisers are increasingly targeting Spanish-dominant Hispanics via online advertising. There is a big opportunity for large Hispanic online media properties, such as, MSN, Terra, AOL Latino, Batanga and others to capitalize on this trend. This opportunity also extends to properties that were born as print vehicles and are now establishing themselves online, since Latin American newspaper and magazine publishers have a wealth of content and their websites generate heavy traffic.


Advertisers are increasingly targeting Spanish-dominant Hispanics via online advertising. There is a big opportunity for large Hispanic online media properties, such as, MSN, Terra, AOL Latino, Batanga and others to capitalize on this trend. This opportunity also extends to properties that were born as print vehicles and are now establishing themselves online, since Latin American newspaper and magazine publishers have a wealth of content and their websites generate heavy traffic.

Currently, only 30% of Hispanic Internet users are Spanish-dominant, although this is the segment of the Hispanic Internet user population which is growing the most: “This subsegment is growing at an annual rate of approximately 40% per year,” said Lee Vann, founder and president of San Diego-based Captura Group.

The number of Spanish-dominant Hispanics accessing the Internet has increased by 40% during the last twelve months. “1.3 million new Hispanics came online. Of those 1.1 million were Spanish-dominant,” Vann notes. One of the reasons for this increase is that Internet service providers have been sharply lowering the prices they charge for Internet access.

Websites of Latin American newspapers that are frequently visited by Hispanics “provide excellent prospects for some of our clients,” says Debra Nason, Hispanic online media buyer at San Antonio-based Bromley.

Bruno Almeida, ad-sales director of Miami-based Media Consulting Group, tells Portada® that in 2006 advertisers targeting U.S. Hispanics will spend between $3 million to $5 million in buying online advertising in Latin American websites. With the Hispanic online advertising market growing at an annual rate of over 40% that figure is going to grow: “We run home country online campaigns for our clients that target solely U.S. Hispanics. Disney, for instance, advertises in Puerto Rico’s El Nuevo Día website and you can only see the ad if you log into the website from a U.S. IPaddress.”

Other campaigns targeting U.S. Hispanics in Latin American newspaper websites include one by Verizon, which goes after U.S. residents of Argentinean, Colombian, Peruvian, Costa Rican and Mexican origin by placing online ads in La Nación (Argentina), El Tiempo (Colombia), El Comercio (Peru), La Nación (Costa Rica) and El Universal (Mexico). Mexicana de Aviación (Mexican Airlines) is running a similar campaign, as are Sprint-Nextel, America-Tel and Philip Morris.

Philip Morris’ Youth Smoking Prevention initiative advertises in Mexican and Puerto Rican websites and aims to convince Hispanic parents to talk to their children and prevent them from smoking.


Between 8% and 25% of Latin American newspapers web-traffic comes from the U.S. Argentina’s Clarin newspaper website has almost one-quarter of its traffic coming from outside Argentina (6.3% from the U.S., 4.5% from Spain and 0.6% from Canada). “We use our own and proprietary technology, such as “Open AdStream” to direct geo-targeting campaigns throughout the region,” says Marcelo Cacciola, Online Division Director for Publicitas Latin America. Cacciola says this gives them a unique market advantage, since some websites do not have the capability to perform comprehensive analysis of the ad-traffic they generate, while Publicitas does have this capability.

Publicitas recently ran pan-regional campaigns that targeted U.S. Hispanics and Latin Americans online for Xoom (Dominican Republic), Palm (Brazil), Xerox (Brazil), Hertz (Central America), Symantec (Costa Rica, Venezuela, Guatemala, Panama, Colombia, El Salvador) and LD Communications (Mexico, Brasil). Publicitas represents some of the main Latin American newspapers for print and online media ad sales.

Dan Austin, head of client services at Black Sheep ad agency in Miami, has used Latin American websites in order to promote his clients. One such client is Voy, a multimedia platform of non-fiction content designed to inspire, motivate, and entertain Latino audiences, to U.S. Hispanic audiences.

“We managed two campaigns for a Mexican client who was trying to reach Mexicans living in the United States through advertising in Mexican newspaper websites. It's not something we see a lot demand for, but it is something we've done before,” says Jacques Hart, VP of sales for Click Diario, a site representation company in the Spanish-speaking sector, that reaches 30 million users per month.


D’Alessio IROL, an Argentine consulting firm, recently published a survey of more than 530 Latin Americans who live in the U.S. stating that out of every 10 Latin-Americans living in the U.S. who visit sites from their countries of origin: 1 holds high positions in their companies, 3.3 are self-employed professionals and/or middle managers and two are technicians and/or employees. Their income levels are relatively low, compared to the general U.S. population, but high compared to Latin American salaries. The majority, independent of their country of origin, can be found in the $18,000-24,000 income bracket, a quarter of the Mexicans, Uruguayans and Colombians declare incomes between $50,000-$75,000.

Very important for online advertising and e-commerce purposes is that 9 out of every 10 Latin Americans who access news sites from their countries of origin have at least one credit card. The most used ones are Visa (67%), MasterCard (47%) and American Express (29%). Three of four have a broadband connection and more than 75% have bought products or services over the Internet.


According to the survey, these Latin Americans living in the U.S. connect to sites in their countries of origin, especially newspapers. For every ten Latin Americans who live in the U.S. and access newspaper sites from their countries of origin: eight use it to decide on the purchase of goods and services, seven to purchase goods and seven access the site of a newspaper from their country of origin, with U.S. specific advertising. A full 87% of these users read their home country newspapers to be up-to-date, and 76% do it because “it’s my link with my country’s events.” National news, sports, business and finance rank as the main sections visited.

Interestingly, the fourth most visited section is news about the U.S. Eight in 10 participants also visit U.S. versions of Spanish-language sites like ( 45%, Yahoo en español/Telemundo (44%), MSN Latino (23%), (14%) and AOL Latino (7%). The percentage is particularly high in income brackets below $24,000.

Twenty-nine percent of Latin Americans who visit newspaper sites from their countries of origin choose Spanish as the language they prefer when they connect to the Internet, while 53% choose bilingual.


Latin American newspaper websites are by no means the only Latin American online media properties that are heavily trafficked by Hispanics. Grupo Televisa’s gets 6 million unique users per month from the U.S. Hispanic market. links to Tarabu, an online music store that was launched last year with the backing of Universal Music,

Sony BMG, Warner Music and EMI. Sources at Grupo Televisa note that Mexico has 1.8 million broadband subscribers. But the biggest prize is the estimated 4 million U.S. Hispanic broadband subscribers. Some websites that are not owned by media companies are also starting to offer online advertising. Travel site sells banner advertising on its U.S., Argentinean and Brasilian website channels to Mexicana de Aviación (Mexican Airlines)., a distributor of Latin American movie programming, is advertising its own product to Latin Americans outside of Latin America (mostly in Europe and the United States), says channel partner engineer, Ricardo Vegas., a European website that sells train tickets, is building a website to target U.S. Hispanics and Latin Americans and may sell advertising on its own website as well as buy advertising on travel related websites trafficked by Spanish-speaking audiences.


Of course, it goes the other way around as U.S. Hispanic websites are heavily trafficked by Latin Americans. Luis Eduardo Baron, publisher of La Guia (several editions in Florida) and 7 Dias (Tampa) notes that 15% of La Guia’s website traffic comes from outside the U.S. (mostly from Mexico, Peru and Argentina). 10% of 7 Dias traffic comes from outside the U.S. (mostly from Spain and Argentina).

U.S. Casinos advertise in Latin American media to attract visitors to Las Vegas – not surprising when you consider that Mexicans account for 9.3% of international visitors to Las Vegas while Central American Casino Resorts advertise in Hispanic media to attract Hispanic visitors. U.S. educational institutions also buy advertising on websites that target the Latin American business community. Panregional business magazine and website America Economia is running online advertising by the Kellogg School of Management.


Due to the strong integration between the Latin American and the U.S. Hispanic economies, the amount of marketers in both regions who are going after Hispanics through “behavioral targeting” in online media is poised to grow.

This is one of the most promising developments in the digital media industry for Spanish-speaking audiences. Research firm eMarketer estimates that marketers will spend $1.2 billion on behavior-targeted online advertising in 2006 in the U.S. – and forecasts that the market will surge to surpass $2 billion in 2008.

According to eMarketer, behavioral targeting helps marketers get better results from fewer impressions. Publishers like that behaviorally-targeted ads deliver more revenue from secondary pages and users find this type of advertising to be more relevant to their needs.  

How large is the Online Hispanic Newspaper Advertising Market?

Spanish-language newspaper websites still have a very small share of overall Hispanic online advertising. Websites like,,, and Starmedia are ad revenue leaders.

In the general market, in 2005 online newspaper advertising amounted to $2 billion a year or approximately 5% of the $40 billion general market newspaper advertising market.

Portada® estimates that the Hispanic newspaper market advertising market volume in 2005 was approximately $400 million ($325 million local advertising and $75 million national advertising). The Hispanic Internet is less developed and particularly the readers of Spanish-language websites often still lack e-mail access. This ratio implies that probably 1% – 2% of total Hispanic newspaper advertising is advertising bought at these newspapers websites (between $4 million and $8 million). Large advertising agencies are taking notice of Spanishlanguage newspaper websites. Chicagobased Tapestry recently bought online advertising for Philip Morris in La Opinion's website (Impremedia). had $680,000 in online advertising revenues in 2005, according to TNS Media Intelligence.

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