Hispanic Americans are among the fastest growing ethnic population in the United States. According to Pew Research, California, Texas, Florida, New York, Illinois, Arizona, New Jersey, and Colorado, each has a population of over one million Hispanics. Whether looking to target on a hyper-local, regional or national scale, tapping into the Hispanic market can be a smart move. Until recently, this population had been underserved and swept under the general market blanket, or rather completely ignored altogether. Businesses failed to recognize the uniqueness of this segment and did not speak to these consumers in a way that was relatable, and consequently were missing out on crucial advantages that can lead to increased revenue and stronger brand loyalty.
Here are a few pointers about targeting the Hispanic audience.
Be there. Be all there.
Multicultural marketing is all about meeting ethnic consumers in the moments that matter. Whether it be family dinner, casual social gatherings with friends, going out to a party, or birthday celebrations. It’s important to understand the values that Hispanic Americans hold near and dear. Like many minority groups, Latinos are very family-oriented. In fact, Pew Research found that 27% of Hispanics living in the U.S live in multigenerational homes, compared to the 16% of whites doing so. Due to the close ties to relatives and friends, marketers should focus on identifying demand spaces centred on social gatherings and a need for their product to be there.
Learn from the pros.
Coca-Cola is one of the leading companies with a stellar Hispanic marketing push. While they funnel thousands of dollars into campaigns strategically tailored to the Latinex community, the soft drink giant goes above and beyond when it comes to reaching their multicultural demographic on a more personal level. Coca-Cola celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month every October by recognizing the achievements and contributions of Latinos in the U.S. In 2015, Coke used the power of family as a catalyst by creating “Orgulloso De Ser”, a campaign about celebrating last names. It sparked a social movement for Latino pride wherein consumers were encouraged to use the hashtag #OrgullosoDeSer with a hashtag of their own last name. People could even order personalized cans with their own last names on them to further embed the soda brand into the homes of Hispanics.
According to Pew Research reports, 6 out of 10 Hispanic adults in the U.S. are bilingual. Using bilingual advertisements shows consumers that brands recognize and respect their culture but also realize that many Spanish speakers are American citizens too.
Let’s tackle a common misconception: Although Hispanics (specifically millennials) in the U.S. are assimilating more to mainstream American culture, speaking more English and consuming more Englishlanguage media than their predecessor generations, this does not mean marketers should solely be advertising in English. A 2016 Facebook IQ study showed that 80% of U.S. Hispanics don’t feel the need to stop speaking Spanish to be part of the American culture. Speaking Spanish helps them feel connected to their Latino roots and represents the main part of their cultural identity. The study also points out that Spanish speakers do not want to hear google translations of English ads. They want curated content specifically made for Latinos delivered in a way that is culturally relatable. This can be especially effective on radio executions, as the voice is the only vehicle available in which to engage and persuade.
Become part of the community.
About 89% of U.S. residents over the age of 18 are exposed to Outdoor advertising every day. Whether geo-targeting El Paso or East Los Angeles, out of home media is one of the most seamless ways to integrate brands into the community. Local market penetration complements national campaigns by extending the reach and multiplying the frequency of messaging. In cities with a large Hispanic population, consider place-based advertising or transit advertising like phone kiosks, subway takeovers or bus shelters so that your business remains visible. Many Latinos prefer to get their necessities from local stores instead of large supermarket chains. Corner stores or bodegas offer a place for the Hispanic community that is culturally relevant with a touch of nostalgia. Years ago in many South American countries, bodegas were the prime locations for selling goods. Cleaning products, food, and other CPG products were sold and as more Latinos moved to the U.S. they brought this tradition with them. C-store posters work well here as they remind consumers at the point of purchase and are a clever way to remain top of mind for the Hispanic audience.