"I'm the brand builder, evangelist, sales person and educator," says Liz Sarachek, executive director-sales for Yahoo!'s Hispanic effort and category development officer. "My whole career has been about new products and new media in new markets. It's never an easy road."
At the beginning of this year, U.S. Hispanic, which previously reported to Yahoo!'s international division, regrouped as one of the major vertical categories that reports directly to Yahoo!'s chief sales officer, Wenda Harris Millard. "It's a bigger job on a bigger team," says Ms. Millard.
Ms. Sarachek, 35, joined Yahoo! in 2002 after more than three years at StarMedia Network, a Latin American portal that imploded during the dot-com bust. She sells the Hispanic audience to marketers through a variety of Yahoo! portals and in two languages.
In a recent integrated project, Ms. Sarachek masterminded Yahoo!'s involvement with El Premio de la Gente, a Latin music awards event. People were encouraged to vote online via Yahoo! through TV, print and radio ads. Even the ballot boxes carried the Yahoo! logo. Ms. Sarachek sold the site, which drew nearly a quarter of a million users, to advertisers including Motorola and Allstate Corp.
"We got branding, traffic and revenue," she says.
Ms. Sarachek brings boundless enthusiasm and originality to everything she does. At StarMedia, she once delivered a surprise gift of more than 200 individual Japanese fighter fish to clients, embodying StarMedia's aggressive approach to marketing. "I got fish updates for years," she says. "I get photos of clients with their fish."