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"Working for the Vatican was core topic for my career, but I want to keep innovating."

Gustavo Entrala assures that "innovation is the new marketing".

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Gustavo Entrala visit Tecnun PHOTO: Communication Service
31/01/18 18:07 Communication Service

Gustavo Entrala studied Journalism at the University of Navarra. He worked for years creating the first online newspapers such as or and later set up a digital marketing agency called 101. The company gained international attention in 2012 by creating the Pope's Twitter account. The @pontifex account surpassed 6 million users in three months, half of what they had anticipated. On Instagram they surpassed 1 million followers in just 24 hours, breaking all records to date. Entrala is among the 100 Spaniards of the future according to Capital magazine and has been at Tecnun sharing his experience with students.

How did the opportunity to work for the Vatican arise?

A friend told me that the Pope had said that the Church needed to modernize. We decided to send a letter to the spokesperson of the Holy See, explaining what we do and how we thought we could help them, and after five months they phoned us to ask us to give them a week of intensive training in Rome. From there we began a relationship that would last until December 2016.

Is it difficult to convince a pope of the convenience of entering the world of Twitter?

We remind Benedict XVI that Pius XI, in 1931, commissioned Marconi to start Vatican Radio and inaugurated it with a Morse message in Latin. And that looks a lot like a tweet. They liked the idea, we prepared the message and sent it to the Secretariat of State. The Pope corrected it. First he launched the new website from an iPad and then the first tweet from an I-phone. The process that opened the Pope's first tweet, beyond its symbolic content, changed internal dynamics in the Church, which has traditionally been afraid of this subject media. The Church is keen to win back young people who largely do not read mainstream media.

In your professional career has it been core topic to work for the Vatican?

Yes, it was a historical event that came to me by chance. I was lucky and I learned a lot from it. In addition, it gave me a brutal visibility. However, I don't stop there, I want to continue providing ideas and inspiration to young people like the students of Tecnun. On the other hand, I'm always thinking about what comes next. I'm very interested in doing the same things as always, but in a different way, and technology financial aid helps me to evolve in that sense.

One of the words you repeat like a mantra is "innovation". Why is that?

Since the advent of the Internet and due to the globalization of the world, the number of people presenting their ideas and launching new products has increased a lot issue . In this environment where there is so much advertising noise, how can you stand out? I think there are two ways: One is to flood the world with your brand, as the big manufacturers do, and the other is to innovate. Apple, for example, spends much less on advertising than other advertisers, and instead is constantly innovating. That makes it very present in the consumer's mind, without needing to draw so much attention to themselves. Therefore, I believe that innovation is the new marketing.

How does it feel to be considered one of the one hundred Spaniards of the future?

You feel a great responsibility. Thank God, I have had parents who have given me a fantastic Education and I have known how to take advantage of the opportunities that came my way. When I finished my journalism degree I didn't know what I was going to do, so when years later I found out that I was considered 'one of the one hundred Spaniards of the future' I felt a great responsibility. What I want now is to work so that there are many people in this country who are on that list. 

What projects are you currently working on?

I am closing a contract with an American publishing house to tell my experience working with the Vatican. The book will be published later this year. I am also preparing a new consultancy service company in the field of innovation in communication and I am going to set up a training school for senior managers. In addition, I will be working in an innovation lab for consumer brands. 

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