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Latin crooner returns to help relaunch the bilingual Web site
Della de Lafuente / www.adweek.com

NEW YORK - AT&T has tapped Latin crooner Luis Miguel to help promote the relaunch of its bilingual Web site, "Mi Portal", and to entice online users with exclusive subscriber-only music videos and interview content.

Exclusive content for MiPortal.att.net has been created around the singer's release in May of "Complices" and is designed to promote the revamped portal and AT&T's high-speed Internet and FastAccess DSL services. An online push by the telco begins rolling out today and runs through September.

A multiplatform effort will support via TV, radio and direct mail, with banner ads promoting Mi Portal at via Batanga.com, MySpace Latino, MiGente.com, PeopleenEspanol.com, Terra.com, YahooTelemundo.com and Univision.com. Omnicom Group's Dieste, Harmel & Partners, Dallas, handled creative duties, and WPP Group's Mediaedge:cia was responsible for media.

AT&T's ad spending in Hispanic media, including print, network and cable TV, reached $28 million through March 2008 with the telco spending nearly $130 million in measured media in 2007, up from $117 million in 2006, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

"Our goal is to provide the best bilingual experience for our customers," said Laura Hernandez, AT&T's executive director, diversity marketing. "Luis Miguel's star power is a great way to draw consumers to the portal and let them experience what we have to offer in-language."

The redesigned Mi Portal boasts exclusive video content from Miguel's CD provided by Warner Music, including the music videos "Si tu te Atreves" and "Te Desean," as well as footage from an interview in Spain with the recording artist. The Miguel content is available only to existing and new subscribers of AT&T's high-speed Internet and FastAccess DSL services. The content will remain on the site through December, per the telco.

Mi Portal's relaunch also serves as an opportunity to reposition the site as "a portal experience" offering a wide range of career, consumer, entertainment, finance, lifestyle, news and social networking via 15 channels.

"The big difference is that now we're designating content that's exclusive to AT&T customers, so this is 'special access' [Web] content that only our customers have and that competitors may not be able to get," Hernandez added.

It's the second time this year that an AT&T brand has called on the Latin singer turned pitchman to tout its products and services.

In mid-April, AT&T Wireless launched a Mother's Day-themed promotion featuring Miguel in radio, online, mobile, in-store and TV ads. A 30-second TV spot created by The Bravo Group, New York, showcased scenes photographed during the making of Miguel's video for "Sit tu te Atreves," daring consumers to give their mothers a mobile phone in a buy one, get one free promotion.

"We've found that music promotions like this have been wildly successful, and Mother's Day has always been a great success for us," Hernandez said. "It just seemed to make sense, given Luis Miguel's international popularity, to leverage his popularity for Mother's Day and parlay that into the launch of Mi Portal."

Mi Portal first signed on in 2001 as a bilingual portal aimed largely at AT&T Hispanic customers in the earlier Bell South territory, Hernandez said.

"This is one of those areas where we saw an opportunity because we didn't have a bilingual portal that served the other AT&T territories and it seemed appropriate to bring that kind of experience to our Hispanic customers in our original 13-state footprint," she added.

The telco will connect consumers and prospective customers to the portal in messaging touting its exclusive content via spot TV and spot radio in Austin, Texas; Chicago; Hartford. Conn.; Los Angeles; San Diego; and San Francisco.

A DRTV effort will target Hispanics via a 60-second call to action designed to get consumers to pick up the phone and sign up for the telco's DSL service. The spot will air in the 22 states served by AT&T.

"Awareness" media aimed at select, competitive Hispanic markets, including Atlanta, Chicago and Austin and Corpus Christi, Texas, will provide an overview of AT&T products and services in cities where prospective customers may see the ads and may not be a customer, Hernandez said.

A direct mail campaign to existing AT&T Hispanic customers will highlight the telco's DSL service, Hernandez said, adding, "Hopefully many will be enticed by the reintroduction of Mi Portal and the exclusive content." Publicis Groupe's Bromley Communications, San Antonio, handles.