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Paul Suskey

Salvo Group

Paul Suskey represents a new breed of agency owner. His focus is digital, while his specialization is to successfully provide multicultural marketing solutions for the fast-growing US Hispanic community, while also connecting marketers to the increasingly-powerful and web-savvy Latin American consumer. Miami, of course, is at the pan-regional center of Latin marketing and a melting pot of multicultural, as Paul would attest given his own US and Latin roots. (In fact, many would argue that Miami may be the only place in the US that’s actually located outside the States, in Latin America.) Despite the extraordinary differences among these varied groups of consumers, Paul manages both Americas—North and South—well.

After serving as Media 8’s co-founder since the company’s inception in 2001, he is now solidly the owner of the privately-held shop, best described as “Helping companies communicate with Latinos. Daily. Digitally.” He believes that “A fast and radical transformation in the advertising landscape is underway.” The company’s philosophy for success is built on innovation, creativity and technology— the three elements that Paul believes are the core ingredients of both effective and award-winning marketing programs today. He admits that engaging Latin Americans and American Latinos online is not an easy task, but it is possible through planning, implementation, optimizing and learning. “We put no boundaries on ideas or languages,” he adds. His company’s services include Strategic Planning, Digital Media, Digital Creative, Web Development and Advanced Analytics. Paul manages day-to-day operations, new client acquisitions, and client service aspects of the agency. He also directly helps oversee, along with experienced teams, the strategic direction of all Media 8 clients, maintaining an additional focus on travel-related clients and their initiatives.

Despite his role as owner, he is as conversant on the specifics of media buys as he is on the cost of employing talent in the region. A frequent panelist at industry seminars, he recently talked about the increase in demand for online video creation, admitting that it’s at the heart of every recommendation Media 8 makes. “Taking a 30-second spot and just throwing it up on digital rarely produces a desired effect. We tend to favor customized skins linking out to e-commerce.

Also, thirty seconds online is very lengthy. We tend to go toward more impactful 15-second spots. Pre-roll enhanced by a branded video player skin is particularly effective. We generally exclude Pop-ups and Pop-unders, partly because the technology to block such ads is so prevalent, but also because it can be irritating to the recipient and thus serve to detract from the marketing effort.”

His vision for the region is clear. He’s bullish—even beyond the big markets of Argentina and Brazil. “We are seeing other Latin American countries coming into the fore, however. Colombia’s growing economy and more liberal business incentives are beginning to attract more business from the U.S. media sector. Mexico is an increasingly significant player, and is graduating more IT professionals than any other country in the region. As its talent-base is growing, so is its flexibility from a trade standpoint. Additionally, it benefits from being located so close to the U.S.

Panama is buoyed by the most flexible financial structure in the region, but is hindered by the rather limited talent pool. And finally, Costa Rica is a market to watch, with companies like Intel and HP setting up shop there.” Prior to starting Media 8, Paul was Founder and President of Latin Media Works, a Miami based Hispanic market interactive buying firm, as well as Director of acquisitions for Engage Inc. (Division of CMGI) where he managed Interactive site acquisitions for the US Hispanic and Latin America Division. Prior to a career in advertising, Paul worked as a financial advisor for Josephthal Lyon & Ross (N.Y.S.E.). Although it was a far-cry from his life today, no one would argue with his eye for the bottom line.

My Moderators Sessions

Wednesday, April 5