Why Marketers Are Teaming With an Online English Class

Unilever, Others Have Brands Incorporated Into Warm-Up Quizzes

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Marketers are intrigued by a new way to reach Spanish-speakers as they learn English: by sponsoring lessons in a free two-month-old online language course called English180. Initial free trials are about to begin for Unilever, the U.S. Army, Mitsubishi and Macy's, and Andres Moreno, English180's CEO, hopes they will lead to paid brand campaigns.
Andres Moreno, English180's CEO, is hoping the free sponsorship trials he's giving marketers will lead to paid integration later on.
Andres Moreno, English180's CEO, is hoping the free sponsorship trials he's giving marketers will lead to paid integration later on.

Both Unilever and the Army are sponsoring three-question quizzes called "20 second warm-ups" that kick off lessons. The first question in Unilever's Knorr quiz, for instance, is: "With Knorr Foods you can make inspiring (blank) using the world's finest ingredients." The three word choices are greatest, recipes and home. There is also a quiz introducing a Knorr sweepstakes to win a cash prize and a Knorr chef to cook at home for you.

"What appealed to me is here's an opportunity to create an added value for Hispanic consumers," said Ivette Alvarez-Santoro, Unilever's senior brand manager for multicultural marketing. "We want to test and see what type of users we'd be attracting."

Site growth
Mr. Moreno said English180.com has 31,065 registered users after two months and attracted 80,905 unique users in May. The lessons include 60-second Daily English Pills that will also be the basis of a radio and TV campaign English180 is developing with its agency, ADN Communications, Miami.

For the Army, the message to Hispanics is about leadership and respect. Its quiz is introduced with the question "What does the Army have to offer?" and ends with an online form for users interested in meeting with a recruiter.

"I'm pretty confident it will work," said Jose Manuel Montenegro, director-client services and media at the Army's interactive agency, Focus Multimedia. "It's very difficult to find publishers in Hispanic online marketing willing to do a cost-per-lead project. That sets them apart."
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