Tag Archives: Hispanic media agency blog

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Following the Money with Latam’s E-Commerce

We know that e-commerce is growing nicely in Latin America, up 24% between 2009 and 2010 to hit $12 billion and that it may go up by 58% in 2011.

We also know that Brazil is home to the biggest online buyers, followed by Mexico and Argentina, and that Colombia and Chile are up-and-coming e-commerce markets.

But what Latin Americans are actually buying online is what shows the true impact of e-commerce in the region.

A November 2010 comScore study showed that the retail categories with the biggest reach are consumer electronics, computer hardware and software.

A study released in June 2011 by Google and D’Alessio IROL of Latin American online shoppers showed 5 top categories:

  • Cell phones
  • Clothes (including shoes and accessories)
  • CDs/DVDs
  • Internet connection services
  • Computers

Researching Online, Buying Offline
While both survey results offer good news for advertisers in those categories, they’re not the only ones who can benefit from Latin America’s e-commerce boom. In the comScore study, the most popular retail category for Latin American online shoppers—ahead of the ones already mentioned—is comparison shopping.

The Google study showed similar results: 52% Latin American online shoppers report that after researching a product online, they buy it offline.

Other surveys suggest why this happens: many Latin Americans are still cautious about shopping online. They’re worried about consumer data safety, scams and in certain countries the import tariffs also seem to be a factor. Delivery is another concern.

However, these circumstances potentially offer the best of both worlds for advertisers. Reaching customers with a message online can either lead to an online purchase or drive traffic to stores if they’re just researching before buying. In fact, this could explain why online ad spend has gone up so much around Latin America, spiking upward by as much as 56%.

To learn more about how we can help you reach Latin American shoppers all over the region or in specific countries, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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Social Media Successes in Latam

Despite lots of searching, so far, I haven’t found a ton. Why? First off, more than half of Latin American companies say they don’t have a social media presence, so adoption is far from total. Second, many firms may not want to share their secrets of social media success and lose a competitive edge. However, the successful case studies I did find offer some interesting insights into what works.


Pepsi Strips Down
At the most recent World Cup in 2010, Pepsi was not an official sponsor with all the benefits (and costs) that this would entail. But its ad agency noted that Diego Maradona, coach of Argentina’s team, promised he’d do a naked victory lap around Buenos Aires’ obelisk if his team won. So Pepsi created a campaign in which it promised to also go nude if Argentina won: it would strip its labels off of its bottles for a week. The company ran print ads that showed a Pepsi-shaped bottle with only a blue label that featured the promise to go “nude.” Pepsi complemented the print campaign with a Facebook contest. Fans could upload photos of themselves wearing only a tag that had the message from the print campaign: “Si DT se desnuda, nosotros también” (If the director técnico—coach—strips, so will we). Fans uploaded around 14,000 nearly nude photos. And while avoiding heavy-duty sponsorship fees, Pepsi ended up being one of the four soft drink brands that consumers associated with the World Cup—the other three were paying sponsors.


Bancolombia Reaches Out
Rather than create a social media effort tied to a specific campaign like Pepsi, Bancolombia’s efforts are ongoing. Basically, they use Facebook and Twitter to allow their customers to tell them about problems—and they offer solutions, right away. It’s not much different than what Best Buy did with Twitter a while ago. Bancolombia also tells its fans and followers about special promotions, posts its commercials on YouTube and spreads the word out about current campaigns running in other forms of media. The combination of one-way communication (promotions supported by ads in other media) plus two-way communication (answering customer questions and solving problems) has earned Bancolombia 49,000 Facebook fans, 14,000 Twitter followers and 114,000 views of their YouTube videos.


Doritos Feeds Social Media
In Argentina, Doritos didn’t start out with a specific social media campaign. Instead, it researched its target audience of young people and created a media campaign to bring them closer together via slow dancing. Blogs, social media chatter and other sources suggested that this is what young Argentines wanted. As it turns out, clubs in the country favored pulsating techno music, not exactly a romantic choice. So the campaign centered on bringing back slow dancing to the clubs with ads in different media and a website where people could sign a petition that Doritos would show club owners.
This campaign spurred a spontaneous social media campaign by the audience. An event sprung up with a specific goal: get together to slow dance in Buenos Aires’ Planetarium club. Social media, acting like high-tech word of mouth, spread the word. Eventually 4,000 people got together to dance. In the process, the cause sparked 33 Facebook groups with 20,000 members and 200,000 views on YouTube, as well as TV coverage for the actual event. The social media coverage lifted the brand’s profile while helping spike sales.

Lessons Learned

  • Social media does not take the place of “traditional” media—it complements those campaigns by reaching people another way and letting them interact with the brand
  • Social media spreads the word—and what grabs attention is a benefit for end users like discounts, contests or special sales
  • Think about your customers’ general needs when creating a campaign—even if it doesn’t directly or obviously relate to your brand
  • Create a positive, creative event people can participate in—airline Colombiana Aires ran a Facebook contest in which people uploaded videos and photo montages to win tickets to a Peter Manjarrés concert held in the air on a Bogotá to Cartagena flight 

To learn more about how we can help you reach Latin America with a customized campaign, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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5 Lessons about Online Argentines

In June 2011 comScore released a study called El Estado del Internet en Argentina  (The State of the Internet in Argentina). The intelligence from the study is great—if you know how to interpret it. Here are some of the key findings from the study and what they mean to marketers and advertisers.


#1 Argentines Spend the Most Time Online

With 12.9 million Internet users, Argentina is third in Latin America, behind Brazil (41.5 million) and Mexico (19 million), and just ahead of Colombia (12.7 million). But Argentines spend more time online than all other Latin Americans: 27.4 hours a month compared to 25 in Brazil and Mexico and 4 hours more than the world average, which is 23 hours a month.
>>>What it means: More time online means more opportunities and a higher frequency to reach this audience with your ads. And this is an audience worth reaching: not only did e-commerce grow by 48% in Argentina in 2010, the country is among the top 30 emerging retail markets of the world


#2 Argentines Look a Lot

Like most of the rest of the world, Argentines love search. Nearly 97% of online Argentines use the Internet to search and 89% of these users prefer Google. Each Argentine search user averages 175 searches per month, which places the country among the world’s “heavy searchers.” A number of Latin American countries make this list, including Colombia (#1 with 233 monthly searches), Peru (203), Mexico (178), Venezuela (168) and Brazil (150). 
>>>What this means: Google search ads are likely to generate a huge amount of impressions while getting your brand in front of almost the entire online audience in Argentina. We have a number of Google-certified professionals to help plan, manage and optimize search ad campaigns.


#3 Argentina’s Heaviest Online Users Are Younger

Men and women aged 15-24 are online over 30 hours a week in Argentina, in marked contrast to the United States, for example, where the heaviest users are 45-54 years old. Nearly 28% of Argentine male users are 15-34, while 26% of female users are 15-34—the younger users are by far the biggest portion of the overall online audience.
>>>What it means: For advertisers looking for this younger audience, tech, entertainment and gaming are all good fits. In fact, CNET, which we represent exclusively in Latin America, is the #3 technology news site in Argentina, with 500,000 uniques a month, while last.fm. ranks #8 among music sites. For its part, Gamespot ranks among the top 12 gaming sites in the country, with 182,000 uniques per month. Of course, our extensive relationships with over 1,000 publishers in the region means that we can craft a custom campaign with many other sites that draw this younger audience.


#4 Argentines Love Local News Sites

As a category, news reaches 71% of Argentina’s overall online audience. This is significantly higher than the news category’s reach in Brazil (56%), Mexico (55%) and Colombia (59%). Grupo Clarín and Grupo La Nación are the leaders in the news category, with a 44% and 31% reach, respectively. MSN News is a distant third with 13%.
>>>What it means: This reflects the Argentine market’s preference for local news providers. In fact, this preference has made it a challenge for advertisers in the U.S. or outside Argentina to reach the market. However, US Media Consulting has longstanding relationships with Argentina’s leading newspapers—as well as those of all of Latin America. As such, we can help American and other non-Argentine advertisers position themselves to take advantage of this market preference and reach Argentina.


#5 Argentines Love Sports Sites

Given the country’s well-known soccer fever, this is not a surprise. In March 2011, 38% of online Argentines visited a sports site. Only Brazil equaled this figure—Mexico and Colombia trailed significantly in this category, with 25% and 28%, respectively. The sites with the biggest reach were Ole.com.ar and Gran DT, and users spent an average of nearly 70 minutes on Ole.
>>>What this means: If your product or products skew young and male, sports sites like Ole will generate a strong CTR. Our media relationships can help you reach this demographic with a variety of options.

To learn more about how we can help you increase your reach in Argentina’s market, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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Louis Vuitton

Reaching Latam—the Hottest Retail Market in the World

Nine Latin American countries are among the top 30 emerging countries for retail development, according to a report by consulting firm A.T. Kearney. As an emerging retail region, Latin America far outstrips any other, even Asia and the Middle East.

Brazil is the number one emerging retail market, followed by Uruguay (#2) and Chile (#3), with Peru coming in at #8. Mexico is #22, Colombia is #24, Argentina is #25, Panama is #27 and Dominican Republic is #28.

What’s behind the high rankings? Booming Latam economies and dedicated shoppers. For advertisers and marketers, this report further confirms that now is the best time to reach out to this market.

Considering the boom in Latin American media, there are multiple options for taking advantage of the region’s hot retail market.

Online. A recent study by Microsoft Advertising indicates that 71% of Latin Americans go online to research before buying. Besides information, they want savings. That’s why Groupon has exploded in popularity in Argentina, for example.
>How we can help: An online campaign on high-traffic Web sites customized to the demographic you’re after. We can set this up for the whole region or for specific countries. Either way, our longtime relationships will get you great CPMs.

Print. Newspapers and magazines are expanding their reach in Latin America. In 2010, circulation spiked 5% overall for Latam newspapers. Brazilian newspapers have enjoyed a 4% increase in circulation so far in 2011, while Brazilian magazine circulation went up 7% in 2010.
In addition, Latin American newspaper sites draw big traffic. For example, according to comScore, Colombian newspapers El Tiempo and El Espectador rank #7 and #20 among the country’s most popular sites. In Argentina, Clarín is #5 in amount of unique visitors per month and La Nación is #10.
>How we can help: Our close relationships with all the major newspapers in Latam stretch back nearly a decade. We can easily set up a combination print/online campaign to allow you to reach the readers of these popular newspapers with both media. Or we can conduct a print-only campaign—again, our relationships can get you superb pricing, a variety of  formats and premium positions

TV. Latin America’s  traditional leader in ad spend remains firmly in place. However, going beyond free TV to pay TV allows you to reach the more affluent customers that are powering this retail surge. And pay TV is exploding in the region. Currently there are 42 million subscribers, but by 2015 half the homes in Latin America will have pay TV.  
>How we can help: Our relationships with major networks like Televisa, Globosat  and Bloomberg TV will deliver competitive pricing to match their impressive reach.

To learn more about how we can help you reach Latin America’s booming retail market, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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Creative Saves with Brazilian OOH

Usually, our consulting work with firms centers on what type of media to use and how to use it. We almost never get involved with the creative. It’s usually not necessary. But recently we had to step in to help a client avoid some major creative missteps with an out-of-home (OOH) advertising campaign.

Save #1: The Setting
Originally, the client approached us to help pick a format and determine placement for some panels. The setting was to be beaches in the Rio de Janeiro area. However, the client wasn’t targeting all the right beaches in Rio, so we immediately made suggestions based on our expertise. Since I’m a native of Brazil—as are two of our media division heads and our VP of Ad Sales—we knew exactly where the panels should go for maximum impact.

Save #2: The Set-Up
In terms of the OOH ads themselves, the client wanted to combine panels in one area of the beach with an inflatable billboard in the water. A clever idea, but we quickly pointed out that Brazil’s laws would make it tough—if not impossible—to get permits for an inflatable billboard in a timely manner.  Instead, we suggested a plane with an aerial banner. Perfectly legal and great exposure as people looked up while sunning themselves or splashing around. For panel placement, we recommended backlight panels that would be placed on the back of newsstands. As it turns out, a number of newsstands in Brazil are located very close to major beaches. With this placement, most beachgoers would see the panels just as they were arriving. As such, our strategy would allow the ads to reach the audience upon arrival and then while enjoying the beach—with no legal obstacles.

Save #3: The Copy
When the creative for the banner arrived, we spotted a huge problem. The campaign concept was about unity between Brazil and another country. While the approach was playful, it also involved nudity and its message could be interpreted as offensive to Brazilian women. We knew instantly that this could lead to a backlash with the public—not to mention that the government could conceivably ban the ads because of their content. After discussions with the client, they agreed to go with an all-type aerial banner. With the client’s input, our team created the messaging. We managed to tie it into the overall campaign concept yet still work culturally for Brazilians. Our new copy stressed unity but in a broad sense that left no room for misinterpretation.

End Result
Our OOH campaign generated positive buzz in the media, drove response for the advertiser and the overall campaign even earned industry recognition, winning Gold awards in a number of ad competitions.

To learn more about how we can help you with your next OOH campaign, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com. You can get the big picture on Brazil’s media market here and can learn more about why you should advertise in Brazil even without a local presence here.

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Our New Office in Colombia Debuts

US Media Consulting’s Colombia team has a new headquarters in Bogotá’s exclusive Chico Zone. This is the city’s advertising nerve center, home to the country’s most important creative and media agencies. “The new office will centralize our Colombian operations and allow us to more efficiently serve not only Colombia, but also the entire region,” says Catalina Abadia, Regional Sales Manager, Andean Region, for US Media Consulting. Although the office may be new, US Media Consulting is not new to the market. We’ve been operating in Colombia since 2006, handling online campaigns for a variety of clients of OMD Colombia, McCann-Erickson and Starcom, among other agencies. Our success has allowed us to expand the team and we hope to keep growing. You can find us here  at Calle 93B, #16-66 Oficina 210, or call us: +57-1-704-3472. We look forward to receiving current and future clients in our new office!

To learn more about how we can help you leverage our expertise in the Colombian and Andean media markets, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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Driving Response with Strategic Service

Crafting an advance strategy for a campaign always makes sense. It’s essential to know a market and have your action steps ready to execute.
But this doesn’t always deliver great results. Sometimes, giving a client strategic service as the campaign unfolds is what really drives the impact.

First Impressions
Recently, we planned out a print ad campaign for an audio equipment manufacturer in Mexico. What initially drew the client to us was the discounted pricing we offered. We knew that we could get the client low costs per thousand (CPMs) and good exposure. The ads were call to action pieces that were focused on customer conversions to buy the equipment advertised. With that in mind, we drafted our initial strategy.

Refining for Reach
We set up a campaign with newspapers that were proven high-reach performers. The client tracked the results, and we delivered on both price and response.
But we knew it could be even better, so we expanded the campaign to magazines. Leveraging our longstanding relationships with print media in this market, we kept the great prices—but got the client even better positions.
Soon we were able to get the client premium placement on back covers, inside front covers and more.
Again, we saw great results when the tracking reports came in. Of course, we still knew they could be even better, so we continued to refine our efforts.

The Bonus Plan
To make sure the client was getting the most out of the power of print, we then focused on changing up formats. More negotiating made the numbers work while we tried out different ad sizes and formats like inserts, cover wraps and belly bands. The client’s continual tracking let us know what was delivering the best results—without any budget breaking.
As we worked out the details of new formats with newspapers and magazines, they often offered the client premium positions in their supplement publications as a bonus. We quickly agreed, getting even more exposure for the client plus a free test of new outlets.

What’s Next
Our next moves with the client will be like our previous ones—driven by strategic service. Based on tracking reports, our nonstop research into the market’s print media and never-ending negotiation, we’ll continue fine-tuning our efforts to deliver ever-better results for the client.

To learn more about how we can help you leverage the power of print in Latin America, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com. To get the big picture about Brazil’s media market, click here. You can learn about Latam’s media boom here.

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3 Reasons Why Latam Newspapers Are Hot

It’s a major contrast. While U.S. and European newspapers are losing circulation, readership and revenue, Latin American papers are booming, just like all Latam media outlets. During the last 5 years their circ has gone up by 5%. They also boast a 65% revenue increase between 2006 and 2011. And revenues look to keep going up—projected increases are 14% a year through 2016. There are 3 key reasons behind this boom.

 

New Audience
The region’s economic upturn has lifted millions out of poverty. Now they can afford newspapers…and many can also afford the products advertised in them. “Indeed, in Costa Rica both the demographic growth—like the poverty level reduction, income increases and access to wide credit sectors—have created new markets in which, from a business perspective, limited buying power is made up for through a huge amount of buyers,” explains Jorge Robert, Corporate Media Director for Grupo Nación, which publishes La Nación, Costa Rica’s largest daily.

New Products
That said, more new readers isn’t enough. According to Robert, “these changes haven’t affected traditional products positively but have sparked new products that are journalistic and commercial successes never before seen in the country.” This means that La Nación and other newspapers have launched new broad-based publications designed to connect with this new group of readers. Examples include tabloid-style  or niche pubs like Grupo Nación’s La Teja, El Salvador’s El Gráfico, Puerto Rico’s En Punto and Guatemala’s El Nuevo Diario. They cover lifestyle topics with a simpler, easy-to-read style.  One of the biggest success stories among new launches has been the tabloid Super Noticia. Launched in 2002 in Belo Horizonte, Brazil’s third largest city, it serves up a mix of crime and entertainment news spiced up by models in bikinis. Its circ stands at 295,701, number one in the country, according to the Instituto Verificador de Circulação, Brazil’s version of the Audit Bureau of Circulation.


New Platforms
Relatively low Internet penetration in Latam is another reason for the surge. Logically, fewer Internet users mean more potential newspaper readers. But Latam newspapers haven’t just coasted on a having a captive audience with no other information choices. They’ve created dynamic Web sites that have established their brands among Internet users. In other words, the reader that knows Colombia’s El Tiempo from the print version will keep reading it when they migrate to the Web. In fact, according to comScore, Colombian newspapers are among the country’s most popular sites: El Tiempo ranks #7 in unique visitors and El Espectador is at #20. In Argentina, Clarín’s website ranks #5 in unique users and La Nación is at #10. Chile’s El Mercurio is the #5 Web site, followed closely by La Tercera at #7. In Perú, El Comercio’s Web site is at #5, while Mexico’s El Universal newspaper ranks #24 among the country’s most popular Web sites.
     Beyond just rebranding on the web, Latam newspapers are also smart about using online media.  For instance, La Nación has more than 100,000 Facebook followers. “We hook them into reading our newspaper either in print or online. We don’t take the content to Facebook, we take them from Facebook to La Nación,” explains Robert. El Tiempo does something similar. It posts its headlines on Twitter and drives traffic to its site. In fact, the Colombian daily frequently hired a Twitter header to manage its messaging with the hyper-popular social medium.

To learn more about how we can help you leverage the power of newspapers in Latin America, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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The comedy show Custe o Que Custar satirizes pop culture and politicians.

6 Basics about Brazil’s Media Market

Brazil is big these days. No surprise there: a spiking GDP, 190 million potential customers and a well-developed media market are getting lots of attention. You also can advertise there and make money without a local presence. These basics on the country’s media market will give you a sense of the potential rewards and challenges.

#1     Brazil’s media market is big. And small. While there are lots of media choices, only 7 firms control 80% of what’s read, heard or seen in Brazil. Organizações Globo rules TV, film and radio and is competitive in print and web media. It commands around 75% of Brazilian TV ad spending. Beyond free TV, Globo’s has interests in Net Serviços, the country’s largest cable company, and SKY, the largest satellite dish company. In print, Abril produces 73% of the highest-selling magazines in the country.

Domingão do Faustão is one of Brazil's top shows.

#2     TV still rules the media mix. This medium has the most penetration in Brazil (over 90%) and commands 60% of the overall ad spend. Other forms of media lag way behind, with newspapers a distant second at 12.7%. This is markedly different from the U.S., the U.K. and even Argentina, in which TV dominates but other forms of media don’t lag as far behind. Brazil is closer to Mexico in this sense, where 76% of ad investment goes to TV.

#3     Magazines are an emerging force. Circulation has been rising since 2005, spiking 7% in 2010. Biweeklies saw the biggest growth at 21%, followed by 8.1% for the weeklies and nearly 5% for the monthlies. The U.S.’s Condé Nast recently launched a joint venture with Globo, Brazil’s biggest media conglomerate, to create a new company. Edições Globo-Condé Nast will launch popular Condé Nast titles in Brazil, including Vogue.


#4     Online is gaining ground. Brazil has 73 million Internet users, the 8th largest Internet audience in the world according to comScore. Often, 43 million is the figure reported, but that doesn’t factor in the many users at LAN houses in the country. ComScore’s calculations take that into account.
     Since the country’s overall population is 190 million, this means there’s a 38% penetration rate. Not as deep as that of the United States or European countries, but this is changing quickly. The amount of Brazilian Internet users grew by 20% in 2010 and research firm Forrester’s estimates that it will grow 18% a year between 2011 and 2016. E-commerce grew by 40% in Brazil in 2010 and Forrester’s projects it will grow 178% by 2016 to reach US$22 billion. Seven out of 10 online Brazilians visited a retail site in December 2010, with Mercado Livre, Lojas Americanas and BuscaPe boasting the most uniques. Group-buying sites like Clubeurbano attracted 50% more unique users between August and October 2010. And banking giants Itau and Banco do Brasil each had a 50% growth in uniques during 2010. For its part, Brazilian portal iG draws in more than 29 million uniques a month.


#5     OOH is a power performer. Laws restricting billboards in Sao Paulo and Rio did nothing to stop the message getting out. Agencies just got more creative, using projections onto buildings, plasma screens in restaurants and digital panels in airports and malls to reach the audience. And it worked. That’s why out of home (OOH) ad investment shot up by 16% in 2010 to reach US$464 million. Digital OOH ad investment is growing particularly quickly in Brazil. It went up by 58% in 2010 and is projected to grow by another 60% in 2011 to reach $147 million.


#6     For print, consider buys with niche titles. The top two socioeconomic classes in Brazil are A and B, followed by class C, a lower middle class, then the poorer classes, D and E. Around 6 million people are expected to move from class C to class B in 2011 as the economy expands and government programs target poverty. One tendency of the emerging classes in Brazil is to consume more media, particularly magazines. In fact, Brazilians spend more than double the amount of money on magazines than they do newspapers. And when they look to spend, they show an interest in specialized information on decoration, fashion and food. This has given rise to more niche magazines, like Gloss, a teen magazine with a circulation of 140,000.  Other hot niche pubs include luxury magazine Wish Report and yachting magazine Nautica.

To learn more about how we can help you leverage the power of Brazilian media, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

To learn more about how we can help you leverage the power of print in Latin America, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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Gerdau ad

Helping a Steelmaker Celebrate

Brazilian steel firm Gerdau recently celebrated its 110th anniversary in business and needed to get the word out. Their PR & Marketing department launched a local publicity campaign, but they needed more—specifically in the international market.

Goal
Gerdau has significant international operations in 14 countries, including North America, and it wanted to let both consumers and the business community know about its long track record in the industry. It also wanted to let the marketplace know about its rebranding as Gerdau rather than as Gerdau Ameristeel and Gerdau Macsteel.

Challenges and Opportunities
While 110 years in business is an impressive figure, anniversaries of firms aren’t typically strong news stories that outlets pick up right away. We had to define a target audience for the news and dovetail with Gerdau’s PR efforts to yield maximum impact. And while the Web gets out a message quickly and widely, we wanted to deliver impact. And print remains a high-impact tool in a well-balanced media mix.

Solutions
Essentially, this was a business story—the target was investors and potential investors who knew the company, not the general market. As such, we chose major outlets to grab the attention of the target audience. To maximize the power of the message, we went with a full-page ad in each. Gerdau’s creative team offered strong messaging, including its commitment to sustainability as one of the biggest recyclers of the Americas.

Results
Our strategy delivered outstanding impact by reaching more than 2 million people in a single day:
• 1.6 million through The Wall Street Journal in the US
• 123,000 through the Financial Times in UK
• 320,000 through The Globe and Mail in Canada

Sometimes, one broad yet targeted stroke is the best way.

To learn more about how we can help you leverage the power of print in Latin America, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com.

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