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Search marketing to Latinos – Interview with Manny Ruiz of Hispanic PR Wire

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Grant Crowell interviews Many Ruiz, President and CEO of Hispanic PR Wire on optimizing news releases for the Latino market.

How does Hispanic PR Wire (HPRW) distinguish itself from other news wire services? How does your company compare with the services these other new wire companies offer for targeting Latinos through search?

There really is no comparison between us and the. We have built a Latino-exclsuive network for almost 4 years now, building alliances with Hispanic news websites, most of which are print publications that are online, but we include other media outlets like radio and TV that will guarantee a news feed to Hispanic's AdWire that we do in exchange. We have almost 100 Hispanic news web sites that give our clients preferred visibility on their websites. In many cases, you will see our clients on the front page of the news websites. In nearly 80 of those alliances, we actually power their news websites. We give them the news websites totally free – we design the website, we host the website, we do an advertising web share with them. We are actually business partners with a lot of the locations where we can immediately place press releases. This is something that other news wire services can't do, nor can any other business. We have exclusive partnerships that prohibit our competitors from having that same advantage.

Tell us about your “Interactivo Release” and how it relates to search

The Interactivo Release has all the components of the Web 2.0 press release – hyperlinks, high res photographs, quote box, photographs, related info, pdfs, and a website preview. In the next month or two, we will also roll out the ability of putting in a video feed.


Your website advertises that you can reach over 2,400 media outlets, with a minimum of 100 guaranteed online placements. Could you name a few sites of particular importance?

We work exclusively with many of the crÚme de la crÚme of the news services. In Miami we have diariolasamericas.com, the second most important Hispanic publication in the Market. In Chicago we have LaRaza.com. Across the country we have many others, and we also have some that are very well known in English, such as Hispanic Business and Yahoo Telemundo. We have the majors, but we also have a lot of publications that may be overlooked, in places that are not the biggest Hispanic market, such as publications in places like Tulsa, Oklahoma. If there are Hispanic media outlets across the country, it is likely that we have online alliances with them. That is one of the things we love about what we have set up, is that we are in a lot of places that are commonly overlooked. We have worked really hard at getting great representation across the country. We have networks with them through our other divisions, like the Hispanic Digital Network, and we do an advertising network. It helps to get some dollars behind the press releases.

Being that the US Hispanic market is still more limited by comparison to the entire U.S. population, how are you helping your both your customers make sure that their press release are going to the right media outlets, and that those media outlets are receiving the most relevant press releases to their own business model?

The Hispanic media numbers is much more limited. There are like 1500 Hispanic media outlets across the country, and we are discovering others every week. Our goal is to reach all media that are interested in Hispanic news, wheatear they are Hispanic or not, English, Spanish, Bilingual. What we have done is identify those media outlets. We have 16 categories of news that ranges from arts and culture, automotive, business and finance, immigration, etc. We have a team of professionals that are media relations experts who contact media outlets and ask them to opt into the news categories that they want to receive. These news categories, some subscribe to one, some subscribe to all 16. We have had a lot of work behind the scenes making sure that you send news that is relevant to the market. We have a system that will filter which stories should go to which media outlets, and we distribute by email, fax, Web and RSS feeds. We are working with evolving formats, so whatever comes down the pipe in the future, we are ready for it. We also have the benefit of having BusinessWire, the world's largest press release distribution service as our partner. We have been able to learn a lot from them, they have shared staff, resources, insight to be able to do Hispanic distribution with a Business wire standard.

You do provide an RSS feed every one of your target news categories. Does that mean if a customer selects a targeted category they want their press release to be featured in, does that mean their press release will show up in the RSS feed as well?

Yes. We do filter out some of the information in the feed, like contact information. This is because there are people out there who will try to use our system to try and get leads and call our clients, and we want to prevent that. There are very specific things we do and don't do through RSS feeds. You have to be a certified, bonafide media outlet to receive the full unfiltered version of the story that our clients want us to push out.

What are the services and features that allow for a press release to be optimized for the search engines, and better able to reach Hispanic markets through the search engines?

When we launched our service in 2000, we never intended for the audience that would be visiting our web site to be anything other than media and Marketing. That is who we had focused on for most of our trajectory. Then about two years ago we noticed a huge spike in our traffic. We would get calls from just anybody, we were getting a lot of regular people who were not reading the whole press release, and they would contact us not realizing there was another contact. What we discovered was that search engines, especially Google, were leading a lot of people to our site. Our web site is embracing that. With Web 2.0, no longer are our press releases just a vehicle for marketing to the media, we want to make the press release appear in all its glory for the regular visitors. We are uploading PDFs, we are hyper linking, and we just began doing this last year. If you have a Google alert, you can pick up our stories for free, every day. We ourselves have a SEO expert that works with us.


Do you also target Latin America?

Our focus at HPRW is in providing our clients with U.S. Hispanic distribution. Whenever we do work in Latin America, we work with Business Wire Latin America, and they have a way of guaranteeing placement on websites of many leading Latin American Web pages and Portals. They have partnerships with all the major wire services, and major publications in Latin America as well. They also have partnerships with major publications in Mexico, Argentina, etc.

How would someone submit a release for Hispanic PR wire?

It is a little different than other services. They would submit a word document with an order form, through an email. The process takes about 5 minutes. We will get it out to the media outlets, usually within about 2 hours. There is a little more of a process than for traditional wire services, because we have to review it, and sometimes we'll have an English version and a Spanish version. It takes twice the work to send a release through us than with a normal service because of the two languages.


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