MIAMI: Visa International last week conducted what the company claims was the first-ever pan-Latin American Internet press conference.
MIAMI: Visa International last week conducted what the company
claims was the first-ever pan-Latin American Internet press
The event was orchestrated by Burson-Marsteller’s Miami office in
cooperation with Pressevent.com, Burson’s in-house webcasting group.
During it, Visa announced the results of the first comprehensive
analysis of online retailing in Latin America, a study conducted by The
Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and sponsored by Visa.
While Visa currently delegates its day-to-day PR activities in Latin
America to about a dozen local boutique agencies, one exec said those
firms weren’t able to orchestrate an event of this magnitude. ’The
agencies we work with in the region simply do not have the technical
capabilities to conduct something like this,’ said Rick Hermida, VP of
corporate communications of Visa International for the Latin American
and Caribbean regions.
Hermida added that the idea to do an Internet press conference seemed a
natural one, because ’if there ever was a time when the medium fitted
the message, this was it.’
Hermida contacted Jorge Ortega, senior VP/managing director and BrandCom
practice chair at Burson’s Miami office. ’He knows my business well,’
Hermida said. The Burson team literally had a week to set up the
Hermida acknowledged that Visa is continuing to talk with Burson about
the future of their relationship. ’We want Jorge to push us to be better
and stretch the boundaries of the client-agency relationship,’ he
The Visa event boasted 23 journalists in attendance at the venue in
Additionally, the company reported more than 420 hits from online
participants, including reporters in London and Canada in addition to
those in Latin America.
A webcast of this sort costs anywhere between dollars 5,000 and tens of
thousands of dollars, depending on the ’bells and whistles’ the
Rick Berry, president of Pressevent.com, noted that the hotel from which
the press conference emanated was not equipped with an ISDN
infrastructure, forcing the tech team to bring in a satellite truck.