NEW YORK The California Milk Processor Board's iconic "Got milk?" health initiative and ad campaign gives its Spanish counterpart "Toma leche" ("Drink milk") a permanent interactive home Wednesday with the launch of the Web portal, TomaLeche.com.
The Web site is the first Hispanic-targeted online effort mounted in Spanish by the CMPB with creative and messaging developed by the board's Hispanic agency Grupo Gallegos, Long Beach, Calif.
"We want to have a Web site that speaks the language and culture of Latinos," said Steve James, executive director, California Milk Processor Board. "We hope that we'll be able to better communicate, better reach and better connect with our Hispanic base by having a site that speaks to them."
TomaLeche.com provides a full-service site with a whimsical, fairytale style as the backdrop for a magical world of milk. Grupo Gallegos created the fanciful online setting with U.K.-based animation production house Hanrahan.
"The primary objective of the project was to give the Web site a new face -- and voice [in Spanish] that would be creative and go beyond what had been more of a corporate Web site," said Juan Oubina, group creative director at Grupo Gallegos.
Until recently, the Spanish-language "Toma Leche" health program and campaign was part of the CMPB's English-language GotMilk.com site, which required Spanish online users to access the site in English and then click the option for Spanish in order to get basic information about the health benefits of milk consumption in their preferred language, per the CMPB.
At the new TomaLeche.com, online users now can navigate through the site via an animated milkman as he travels about the illustrated town delivering milk, said Oubina. Along the way, the milkman's stops include the town school, where online users can learn about the nutritional and health benefits of milk for developing strong bones, teeth and muscles.
"You can drive with the milkman in his truck or you can direct him to go a certain direction or to enter a building," Oubina said.
The site also is ripe with "hot spots" that will trigger certain actions when clicked. For instance, when a bird sitting atop the "Toma leche" billboard is clicked, the bird will begin drinking milk, Oubina added.
"We're hoping that by making it entertaining, engaging and whimsical, in addition to being informative and useful, that it will be a winning combination," said James.
In keeping with the "Toma leche" campaign's mystical theme of leyendas (fables), the CMPB site also is featuring two children's stories written in Spanish by the Grupo Gallegos team, which includes Edgar Hernandez, copywriter, and Paula Oliosi, art director, Oubina said.
The moral of the story "Duendes" ("Elves") is designed to teach children that drinking milk everyday will help them grow up to be tall and strong, "just as the elves in the story," Oubina said.
In "Medusa," the Greek mythology figure known for turning men into stones with her gaze, is transformed through the power of milk to become a beautiful princess with strong nails, teeth and soft, brilliant hair "magically ridding her head of snakes," Oubina said with a laugh.
Both stories are illustrated to resemble the pages of coloring books and downloadable in PDF format so that parents can read the stories to their children and the kids can color in the pages, Oubina said.
"We want to take advantage of the new Web site and the creation of these stories to bring Latino families together to spend time reading together, as well as some important bonding time," James said. "While we're hoping to introduce families and their children to the benefits of milk, we're also hoping it will do something good."
At the fictitious town's movie theater, online users can view current and past "Toma leche" TV spots, including "Bruja," the first spot of 2008 about the health benefits of milk in alleviating the symptoms of PMS, and "Elfo," a spot promoting milk consumption before bedtime as a means for getting restful sleep.
Banner ads destined for Web portals popular among Spanish-dominant Hispanics are in the works to promote TomaLeche.com and to drive users to the site, Oubina said.
The CMPB spent more than $1.5 million in Hispanic TV in 2007, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.
The English-language GotMilk.com was recently redesigned by the CMPB's lead agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco, while Grupo Gallegos worked on creating the stand-alone, culturally relevant site in Spanish for TomaLeche.com.