The Day Latinos Told the Truth

  |  April 12, 2012   |  Comments

Creatives gathered around an interesting topic: the challenge of selling breakthrough Latino creative.

Today was the second day of Hispanicize 2012 in Miami. It was a fully packed event with lots of speakers and a very curious audience trying to figure out where Latino marketing is heading.

As Greg Knipp, CEO of Dieste, shared with me, #hispz12 is poised to be one of the most revealing and interesting conferences about Latino marketing. Everyone was looking for answers, and it seemed that today was the day that Latino professionals decided to share some very insightful truths.

Great Ideas or Simply Latino Ideas?

Creatives gathered around an interesting topic: the challenges of selling breakthrough Latino creative.

Sergio Alcocer, president of LatinWorks, started the fire: "Agencies complaining about their clients and clients complaining about their agencies is something unique to our industry." For him, some clients are not willing to take risks because they don't want to put their jobs in jeopardy. It's up to agencies to push back and defend great ideas. If we don't show our clients that we are willing to lose an account because of our conviction, why would clients take the risk?

Diego Yurkievich, SVP creative director of Alma DDB, discussed the new landscape: "We put the consumer at the center of creativity in order to build conversation," he said. "Our approach is about providing social creativity." For Diego, ideas are still ideas; it's the way you build those ideas that has changed.

Today, creatives need to allow consumers to play a more active role and learn not to be in control.

The panelists agreed that clients tend to ask what's Latino about a specific idea instead of focusing on if the idea is good or not, pushing agencies to make it more stereotypical.

Educating clients, pushing back, and aligning on what success is for a specific brand is critical. There's a disconnect between what agencies and clients define as success.

Dangerous Liaisons

When it comes to television and social media, relationships can turn into something dangerous. But that's good news according to Telemundo's successful case study around its "Relaciones Peligrosas" (dangerous relationships) show.

By having social media as an integral component since day one, the Latino TV network started to build a deep engagement with its fans.

Personal Twitter accounts were created for each of the main characters, providing them with a BlackBerry and training into social media best practices.

Live streaming of the novella via Facebook allowed viewers to interact with the cast. The night of the launch was critical: Facebook chatting with actors helped kick off the dangerous liaisons, adding 8,000 active users in the first 45 minutes. Scripted thoughts of each character shared in the form of a tweet helped established a personal relationship with the audience.

"We know that our audience is very needy," shared Karen Comas (@karen_comas), social media manager at Telemundo, "so we need to post more often to keep up with their expectations."

With more than 20 million impressions on social media on premiere night, the network was able to engage with an audience of 18-34-year-old Latinos. The future is social TV and Telemundo's goal is to transform its entire digital team into a multi-platform storytelling team, the panelist added.

Creating the Right Connection

There's a huge opportunity connecting Latin Americans with the U.S. market. BlackBerry decided to seize that opportunity by starting the quest of finding untapped new talent in Latin America that could succeed in the U.S. "We went to favelas in Brazil and barrios in Venezuela," said David Anon, senior director of marketing at BlackBerry. "Everyone was collaborating via a Blackberry."

Scouting for a new artist wasn't the end goal but the starting point for "Q'Viva! The Chosen" platform.

Tapping into a core Latino passion point like music, BlackBerry was able to partner with Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez to create a reality TV show to enable participants to thrive. It was less about the competition and more about finding the right talent.

Funny to hear Ms. Lopez sharing how she used the BlackBerry PlayBook as a working tool to watch participants while Marc, according to her, was just playing games on his tablet.

The show was number one on Latam networks and ran in Spanish on Univision as well as on Fox in English (a subtitled version).

Organic integration was critical, both online and in broadcast. BlackBerry supported J.Lo's new album and Marc Anthony's concert. It also had a protagonist role on The Ellen DeGeneres Show with an integration focused on Latino content on an English show. Hundreds of PlayBooks were given away to the live audience with packaging specially designed with the Q'Viva look.

The Q'Viva Facebook page reached more than 132,000 fans and 55 million social media impressions. The BlackBerry website benefited from a 3,000 percent increase in traffic since the show launched on Univision.

Truths and Myths on Latinos' Concerns

There was a very passionate discussion about how to win the Latino vote in the "Coming of Age: The Latino Electorate in 2012." Verena Sisa, VP of strategic planning at Conill/Saatchi & Saatchi, presented a very insightful study about the current mindset of Latinos living in the U.S. Forty-eight percent of Hispanics believe their culture has created an impact on American culture, especially in food, television, and politics. Political consultants and advisors stressed the importance of the immigration debate as part of their agenda to win Latinos' votes. The Conill study showed that immigration is not a top priority for Latinos. As with most Americans, job security, price of gas, making ends meet, etc. seemed to be more important. Different agendas? Or simply there's a gap between truths and myths about Latinos' mindset? Politicians seem to be disconnected from Latinos' realities. Hopefully marketers will get the message if they want to win Latinos' votes.


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Gustavo Razzetti

Gustavo Razzetti is EVP, Managing Director of Lapiz, the Latino shop of Leo Burnett. He has 20+ years of experience in integrated marketing communications in U.S. and Latin American markets.

A change agent, with the expertise of transforming agencies into digital at the core shops, Razzetti has become one of the leading voices when it comes to understanding the new market dynamics of US Latinos.

Former Chief Strategy & Engagement Officer at Grupo Gallegos, president of GlobalHue NY and CEO of Euro RSCG Latino. Razzetti's career is marked by extensive experience working with top consumer brands such as Comcast, Walgreens, Verizon, Nestlé, Chivas Regal, General Motors, Coca-Cola, and BBVA, and 200 others. He also served as CEO of Euro RSCG both in Puerto Rico and in Argentina. Prior to that, Gustavo was CEO and founding partner of WhyNet - the no. 1 interactive agency in Argentina.

Strategist by conviction, digital pioneer by choice, leader by evolution; Razzetti has received recognitions that include Effie awards, Gran Prix AMBA, Euro RSCG's CBI Award, and Strategic Planning Director of the Year, McCann Erickson. Many of the campaigns he strategically led won Cannes, Clio, New York Festival, London, and FIAP awards, among others.

On a personal note, Gustavo loves scuba diving, bicycling, gourmet cooking, and fine wines.

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