Volkswagen of America Inc. is launching its first Spanish-language Web site for the U.S. Hispanic market this month.
The site will include flash animation of each VW model, says Daniel Marrero, creative director of COD in Miami, VWoA's U.S. Hispanic advertising agency. It also will have a dealer locater.
The site's Web address is Agarracalle.com.
"Agarra calle" is the Spanish-language version of VW's "Drivers Wanted" tag line.
The site will add entertainment content this year, he says. "That could be chistes (jokes), places to go, music channels," Marrero says.
To guide visitors to the site, VW will add the Web address to its Spanish-language broadcast ads.
It will run banner ads on other Web sites that serve Hispanic audiences, Marrero says.
Other automakers are creating sophisticated Spanish-language Web sites and using automotive channels on Hispanic Web portals.
Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. offers free downloads of Latin music at the Web site matrixmusica.com. The automaker created the site to promote its Matrix sport wagon among Hispanic consumers.
The site includes content in English and Spanish.
In return for music downloads, the site asks users for their names and e-mail addresses. It also asks them to identify the time frame for their next vehicle purchase.
Ford Motor Co. has a Hispanic site on AOL Latino called Mi Negocio ("My Business"). The site, at www.ford.com/go/minegocio, aims its content at minority entrepreneurs.
Ford funds Mi Negocio out of its supplier diversity development program.
The automaker says the site's primary purpose is community outreach.
Mi Negocio doesn't promote vehicles, although the site links to Ford's main Web site.
Almost 13 million Hispanic Americans are online, says Ron Rogowski, an analyst at Forrester Research in Cambridge, Mass.
Says Rogowski: "The automotive industry knows how important this segment is."