Some Digital Concerns from the AHAA Conference â€“ Day 1
November 5th, 2007
Posted by Jose Villa
This yearâ€™s AHAA conference was provocatively titled â€œIs Hispanic Advertising Dead?â€ I personally think the title and theme of the conference was very timely considering the amount of change occurring in the media and marketing world in general, not to mention the heightened competitive pressure Hispanic ad agencies are feeling from general market ad agencies and media shops.
All in all, Day 1 of the conference was solid, and I think that most of what I saw and heard points to the fact that the industry is ready for the challenges ahead.
However, during a very insightful presentation by Jonas Hallberg and Liron Reznik of Kirschenbaum Bond + Partnersâ€™ alternative media creative agency Skinny, someone asked a question that brought forward in plain view one of the major problems still facing this industry. Specifically, after Hallbert and Reznik completed presenting their two case studies â€“ one on their worldwide Absolut campaign and the other on their recent Don Julio Tequila campaigns – which both had a heavy emphasis on digital platforms (including some pretty amazing Web sites for both Absolut and Don Julio), a woman asked â€œcan you can explain how you were able to sell in new media programs like those you presented to clients concerned about metrics and ROIâ€ (I am paraphrasing).
The guys from Skinny were as confused and taken aback as I wasâ€¦ was she really asking what it sounded like she was asking? After getting his bearings, Reznik explained that yes, in fact, they were able to track many aspects of their programs, such as Web site visitors, BlueTooth downloads, etc.
I would hope that the rest of the room was as confused by that question as I was, but I have a feeling that most were not. I have a feeling that most of the folks running Hispanic agencies are still that far behind the digital curve.
Later on during lunch, to confound my distress, I overhead someone defend why they hadnâ€™t done any Hispanic digital marketing for their client, a major CPG company (think the biggest in the world). Their defense was that this client was conservative and didnâ€™t do a lot of digital marketing â€“ when in fact they were one of the most aggressive digital marketers in the general market?!?
Sadly, I think these two anecdotes from the conference, while minor, reflect a major problem that this industry must overcome. In a world where media habits, marketing paradigms, and budgets are rapidly going digital, Hispanic ad agencies are still trying to develop a basic understanding.
The implications of failing to become change leaders in this new advertising world are clearly deadly for this industry. I hope they are up to this challege…
You must be logged in to post a comment.