In case you missed it, we recently ran an article on mobile marketing in Spanish. It generated significant interest so we’ve masterminded a series of posts exploring marketing for Hispanic-Americans, including two posts written in Spanish (with English translations). As a precursor to the blog post series, we wanted to establish a few points so that you know what to expect.
Why Hispanic Mobile Marketing?
It’s the first big question people ask when they start thinking about adopting a strategy that specifically targets a Hispanic audience: “Why should I put money into marketing for Hispanic Americans?” The answer for that question is best illustrated through some pretty astounding figures:
- There are over 50 million Hispanic-Americans in the United States.
Put it this way: on the walk to grab my morning coffee, I usually pass six people. This morning it was the the yet to go to bed guy, the pre 8AM smoker, a newspaper delivery person, a suspicious car dweller, a painter and a latte drinker. Turns out, statistically speaking, that one of those six was most probably a Hispanic (Sheen is 1/6 hispanic)– a figure that’s even higher in Southern California or Arizona.
- The buying power of Hispanics has grown more than the average for the whole country, despite the recession.
The average U.S. household’s purchasing power has increased 6%. For Hispanics, its 20%. Plain and simple, Hispanics are starting to make more money and looking for ways to spend it.
- Hispanics will account for 95% of the teen population growth through 2020.
If you have a teenager, you’ll know that they can be persistent when they want to buy something. I mean I’m in my twenties and I’m still annoying. 95%. That’s 9 teens and kids 6 months away from turning 13 out of every 10. A ridiculous figure – and we all know that today’s teens are tomorrow’s purchasers.
- If you took all the Hispanics in the U.S. and made a country, that country would be the second-largest Spanish speaking country in the world, and have the 15th largest consumer economy.
What? That can’t be right.
I’m as surprised as you are here. Seriously, those are some pretty impressive figures, and I’m part of the statistic. Which brings me to my next point:
From What Perspective?
This is my favorite point because I get to talk about myself : ). As I’ve stated before, I’m from Honduras, a tiny and somewhat unorganized country with a lot of heart (also, Mayans). As a result, I’ve lived a good deal of my life in the U.S., the majority of which I’ve spent adapting to the culture and assimilating to my surroundings. It hasn’t been easy, but fortunately I’ve been able to preserve a lot of what makes me different as a Hispanic-American.
That said, to say that because I’m a Hispanic immigrant I know everything there is to know about the Hispanic market in the U.S. would be plain stupid (seriously, I just found out all those facts like a second ago). What I can offer is a perspective from a member of the Hispanic community in the U.S., as well as that of someone who spends a lot of time being marketed to.
What should I expect?
The whole point of this series is exploring the intricacies and difficulties inherent in marketing to Hispanic Americans, and believe me, its tricky. To be up front, there’s not a magic bullet (and there never is) for success. But there are two Truths that apply across the board:
You have to realize the importance of language.
- Whenever an argument comes up about how Hispanics refuse to let go of their language, some people think of it as a way they separate themselves from the general American public. That couldn’t be farther from the truth.
- This perceived stubbornness to stick to a native language and incorporate it into American subculture comes from a desire to preserve our heritage.
Hispanics are not one huge group of likeminded people
- Each distinct Hispanic culture has different backgrounds, different thought processes and different ways of looking at the world. If you ignore that, you might as well run an ad in Chinese or Russian when marketing to Hispanics.
- Marketers need to realize that Latin Americans are as different in custom and tradition from each other than they are from the traditional American household.
I don’t want to be cliché and exclaim “THE TIME IS NOW!”, but seriously, it is. Hispanics are the largest ethnic minority in the United States and account for a huge percentage of U.S. growth. Its time to realize the importance of creating marketing strategies geared towards Hispanic-Americans and I recommend all marketers put the time in to really looking at Hispanic-Americans as a distinct consumer group. We guarantee you won’t regret it.
* Waterfall’s Hispanic Marketing Series will explore the obstacles and challenges marketers face when targeting the Hispanic-American audience in the United States. We have created a number of posts including:
- How Language Affects Hispanic Marketing
- How to Choose the Proper Channel for Targeting Hispanic Americans
- Why Segmenting the Hispanic American Market Is Crucial For Success
- 6 Need-To-Knows for Mobile Marketing to Hispanics