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A New Way of Reaching Latinos Online on YouTube: Mitú

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Integrated, cross-channel, multi-screen, social, viral, digital, earned are just a handful of the many buzz words recited to thousands of media executives and marketers as they parade from upfronts to newfronts and everything in between. But, who is really delivering? Is there a better mouse-trap to achieve the cultural relevancy needed to win in today's multicultural America?

While traditional media continues to impress us with Nielsen data, a new metric may be arising to help 2013 budget allocations: YouTube views!

It's a known fact that Latinos are highly engaged online, but more than consuming content they are also creating. According to the Forrester Social Technographic Ladder, 47% of Latinos online are "content creators." That's an over-index of 263 vs. non-Hispanics who also lag behind in the areas of critiquing, collecting, joining and spectating online. Also research fielded by the New Generation Latino Consortium has confirmed an gap in culturally relevant content and the important role digital plays in the everyday life of Latinos today.

But, where is that content? Where do Latinos engage most? What are they watching online and where? While we've seen the great success of YouTube sensations like Justin Bieber and makeup artist Lauren Luke, where are the Latinos? Brands envy the power of the hundreds of funny, talented and charismatic YouTube sensations that gather 5, 10 and 20 million views to their channels; hoping their brand could steal at least a fraction of that reach. Ironically some of these raw and authentic at-home videos end up getting more eye-balls and reach than some of TV's best produced multi-million dollar projects! An example: La Receta de la Abuelita; a YouTube channel that scores an impressive 30,000 subscribers and over 19 million views through simple at-home cooking demonstrations of abuelita's most loved recipes.

This is one of the many channels now aggregated by Mitú a premium branded YouTube network featuring both original and user-generated content in English and Español también. Starting with 659K subscribers and reporting over 228 million views, the channel serves as a destination connecting thousands of Latino content creators with each other, with advertisers and with the world.

The time is right for Mitú as marketers continue to increase their focus on both reaching Latinos and innovating with digital and social media marketing. According to Econsultancy's Marketing Budgets 2012 Report, based on a survey of more than 500 companies and agencies, more than two-thirds (68%) are increasing their digital budgets for 2012, compared to 45% of companies increasing overall marketing budgets but only 16% saying the same for 'traditional' marketing budgets. Three-quarters (74%) of companies are investing more in digital marketing technology this year, up from 67% who expressed similar intent a year ago; which creates an opportunity for innovation in this space.

Clearly the viewers are there, the numbers are real and the research continues to validate that digital marketing and social media are redefining the media landscape, but will the brands and budgets follow? It's time to start letting numbers drive the decision making and stop thinking of digital as an experiment or innovation, it simply is the way our consumers engage and live today!

Lili Gil is an award-winning business and Hispanic market expert, business, politics and news media contributor and creator of the online show and channel Moments2CulturRise. She is also co-founder and managing partner of XL Alliance a multicultural strategy and marketing firm dedicated to helping business executives and leaders navigate and enter emerging markets. Gil was recently selected by the World Economic Forum as one of only 190 Young Global Leaders identified across 65 countries for her leadership, community and business impact.