AOL Latino Reaches Out to U.S. Hispanics

LOS ANGELES AOL today launches a Spanish-language campaign for its AOL Latino brand.

The effort, which the Dulles, Va.-based Internet service provider said is its largest Hispanic effort to date, includes TV, radio, print and outdoor ads from Interpublic Group’s Casanova Pendrill in Irvine, Calif., for AOL Latino 9.0 Optimizado.

“This is the first time we’re going after the Hispanic market with a comprehensive service,” said David Wellisch, vice president and general manager. “We want to get the message across that AOL Latino is a community.”

Three TV spots feature AOL’s Running Man character. One spot, “School,” shows a teacher in a classroom writing words in Spanish on the chalkboard. She hears commotion behind her and turns to ask who is passing messages in class when she sees the Running Man and other students looking away so as not to get caught. In showing Running Man learning Spanish, AOL is hoping to convey that it now speaks the language of Latinos, said Wellisch.

A series of 30-second vignettes is meant to supply tips to users that address offerings like homework help, instant messaging and parental controls.

TV ads are running on networks like Univision and Telemundo in markets including Miami, New York and Los Angeles. Spending on the campaign was not disclosed. AOL spent $7 million on Hispanic TV ads in 2002 and $4 million through August of this year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.