CONFERENCE EXTOLS LATIN AMERICA

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[miami] Marketers, broadcasters and agencies reiterated their bullish prospects for Latin America-and Miami as a capital for doing business there-last week at the Marketing 2020 Advertising Summit of the Americas.

The region has emerged from economic and political instability to become a top prospect for future growth, speakers said at the conference, sponsored by Advertising Age International and the International Advertising Association.

REFINING AD MESSAGES

As the Latin American market has emerged, advertisers' messages have been refined to include panregional TV, World Wide Web site development, and direct mail targeting the middle and upper classes.

Such efforts can be successful in a region underpenetrated by direct marketing efforts, said Elizabeth Gannon, direct marketing general manager-Latin America with IBM Corp.

After refining IBM's direct marketing work in the region and establishing telemarketing centers in leading countries, Brazil alone is receiving 2,000 customer calls a day and the computer giant could see 25% to 30% of regional sales derived from direct marketing this year, Ms. Gannon said.

`LIKE SWEEPING GOLD'

"It was literally like sweeping gold off of the street," she said, noting that the effort yielded higher sales while also decreasing the need for a field sales force.

IBM also has used out-of-home efforts like outdoor boards and point of purchase to strengthen its global brand image and its share of voice against competitors.

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