Sixty five percent of Hispanics online are now using social media, according to Manny Miravete, vp, sales and strategy, MySpace and MySpace Latino.
Speaking at the Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies’s 2009 Media and Account Management conference in Las Vegas last week, Miravate stressed social media can be used as either a tactical or strategic medium.
“You bring what you do in your daily life online and social media is enabling that. You can run a simple banner or create a brand profile,” he said. “You can put your brand in that social arena. Social media has mass reach. It’s the fabric of Hispanics online.”
Miravate argued that the difference between MySpace and Facebook is that MySpace is a social portal where users can customize their experience and choose to interact with content. Facebook, he said, is more of a social utility.
Consumers are really savvy and know if they are being advertised to, so marketers should create an ambassador for their brands, Miravate said, pointing out that marketers should also develop the experience and content around passion points. Most successful campaigns have pushed or pulled from traditional media to the Web.
Miravate offered the following advice: “Understand the key driving points for the brand. Connect what your brand can offer and what users want. Pharma has been slow to come to the medium; others like wireless have jumped right in. You need to bring very tangible value to users.”
In Miravate’s view, social media is a great way to use direct response. Some agencies use it just to drive sales and reach10 million U.S. Hispanic users. It’s low cost and delivers high returns, he said. Branded initiatives are helping to launch new products and drive use and purchase behavior.
He encouraged agencies to come up with ideas and then use social media outlets as a vetting process—what’s possible and practical. “We love to brainstorm the new and coolest ways to connect,” Miravate said. “Keep it simple. Build the digital capabilities within your agencies so you’re able to deliver a broader based communication experience for clients—they are asking for it.”
Separately, at the conference, outgoing AHAA chairman José Lόpez-Varela, executive group account director at Houston’s Lόpez Negrete Communications, transferred the organization’s leadership to Gisela Girard, president, COO, Creative Civilization, San Antonio.