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Direct Response Marketing

En Espanol: The Big Hurdle: Measuring Online Bilingual Sales

1 Feb, 2011 By: Marcelo Correa Response

Marcelo Correa Head Shot

At a time when direct marketers need to confront increased competition for media inventory and when the economy has consumers responding less impulsively, advertisers need to look to expanding their online and offline marketing initiatives beyond their traditional audiences. Hispanic consumers have been targeted by direct response advertisers looking to grow their customer bases, but it is not without challenges.

One of the biggest hurdles the industry needs to get over is how to measure the number of sales that bilingual Hispanics are generating on English-language Web sites from Spanish-language offline media campaigns.

According to Market Segment Research, Hispanics spend an average of 32.1 hrs per week consuming Spanish-language offline media versus 22.3 hours consuming English-language offline media. Yet about 70 percent of U.S. Hispanic online users prefer to surf the Web in English, according to a 2010 study done by comScore titled, "Concatados!: Understanding the U.S. Hispanic Online Consumer."

As you can see, there is a huge disconnect between Hispanic offline media consumption and Hispanic online consumption. In order to determine the source of the disconnect, we must first figure a way to measure online responses generated from offline Hispanic media campaigns.

Making the Connection
There is software in development using a proprietary algorithm to perform the necessary analysis to make the connection. The software takes information from more than 50 data points while comparing it to online response data and finds the connections that determine the best media combination and scheduling to drive optimal sales at the lowest cost-per-sale. That data can then be used to optimize media spending to increase sales and reduce cost-per-order.

DRTV campaigns are often tracked by creative, station/network, unit, daypart, calls, orders or leads, and upsells. For online, monitoring includes keywords searched, media source, clicks, visits and conversions. Cross-media optimization takes it a step further by combining data from all media to attribute response back to the source.

This technology-driven process allows a direct response marketer to gather better insights into the correlation between offline and online media. With a wealth of data available from both TV and online reports, the trick is finding what offline and online data combinations affect results when optimized together. As my colleague, Shannon Smith (vice president of business development for E+M Advertising) likes to say, "This is the Holy Grail for direct response marketers." I like to think of it as a "Golazo!" for Hispanic direct response marketers.

By analyzing all of these combinations, finding out which Spanish-language media campaigns are generating sales on English-language sites should become clearer. DR marketers already know the telemarketing response by spot, but now they should also be able to see what online responses were generated by that spot on Univision vs. a spot on Fox Desportes vs. a spot on CNN en Español.

The information from this analytical tool is likely to provide insights that could only have been imagined, most importantly the connection between Hispanic programming, when the viewers are watching, and whether they use English-language Web sites or Spanish-language Web sites.

In a multi-screen and multi-language media world, we in the direct response industry have to improve our ability to not only measure responses to a campaign but also to measure the motivations of the Hispanic consumer to view, respond, search and ultimately buy.

In the coming months, the results of the 2010 U.S. Census will be released. Initial indications are that there will be a dramatic increase in the U.S. Hispanic population — far in excess of any other ethnic group. 2011 and beyond will present a great opportunity to penetrate a vibrant, upwardly mobile and growing market for those who recognize the opening and seize the moment.

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