Mexico Tourism Crosses Border

Names Yesawich, Pepperdine & Brown North American Agency
ATLANTA–Yesawich, Pepperdine & Brown has been designated the North American advertising agency of record for the Mexico Tourist Promotion Board’s estimated $20 million account.
The Orlando, Fla., division of EPB is the first shop named since Mexico created the tourism board in 1999. The board, a private enterprise in which the Mexican government owns a majority stake, gained the authority to pick an agency after the Ministry of Tourism relinquished that responsibility. The ministry had employed Gaudelli, MCW of Mexico City.
Gaudelli was the only Mexican agency seeking the reconfigured account. Other competitors were The Center for the Persuasive Arts, San Antonio; The Coventry Group, Miami; and Reynolds & Associates, Manhattan Beach, Calif.
Miguel Poplawsky, YP&B’s executive vice president of Latin America business, said the agency received a request for proposal in April. After responding, the shop was invited to the board’s headquarters in Mexico City to give a 90-minute presentation, followed by a 30-minute Q&A session.
“One of the main challenges [for YP&B] is that [Mexico] is a very large and multi-destination [country].” said Poplawsky. There is big confusion in the American public and the press that what happens in one place doesn’t mean the whole country is that way at all. For example, if there’s a murder a day in Detroit, it doesn’t make Orlando a danger.”
YP&B, which is opening an office in Mexico City for the account, will develop an integrated marketing communications program targeting both consumer and trade markets throughout North America.
Poplawsky said new work is likely to break in late summer or early fall. The advertising will highlight the food, history and culture of Mexico. The campaign will include broadcast, print and online media, collateral development and distribution, direct marketing and sales promotion.
Poplawsky would not provide an annual media budget figure, but said it would be “an unprecedented amount compared to previous years . . . To say $20 million would be unfair.”
Competitive Media Reporting cites 1999 ad spending at $7.3 million.
According to Travel Agent magazine, Mexico had 20 million international visitors last year, ranking it seventh among the world’s destinations. With $7.8 billion in revenue, the nation has moved up two spots to 14th place among global tourism economies. K