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Direct Response Marketing

En Español: U.S. Hispanic Media: What You Really Need to Know

1 Dec, 2013 By: Alex Agurcia Response


As an influential and growing segment of the population, the U.S. Hispanic market has become a strategic imperative for many marketers. Moving from questioning if they should adopt a Hispanic strategy, marketers instead are now questioning how best to tap into a market with more than $1.2 trillion in buying power.

There are common misconceptions about the most effective media approach for this critical demographic group. Below are some current media trends as one looks toward the Hispanic market for growth.

  • More than 50 national Spanish-language TV networks run DR media. Of these, many target a country-specific audience (i.e., Mexico, Central America, Colombia, Peru, Puerto Rico, etc.) or focus on genre-specific programming (i.e., news, sports, telenovelas, music, etc.). Understanding your targeted demo within the Hispanic segment and which stations and dayparts historically work best for response is critical. Detailed programming knowledge is important, as well. For example, although a news network such as CNN Español may generally attract a male audience, it has special programming that targets the coveted 25+ female demo. Some networks drive more traffic, while others drive more leads.
  • Inventory continues to grow, providing a fertile ground for scalability. According to a Kantar Media report, U.S. Hispanic direct response media spend was $800 million in 2012, with annual TV advertising growth at 15.3 percent — vs. 7.1 percent for the general market. Although there is obvious scalability potential for successful campaigns in this market, the effectiveness of each format length (30, 60 or 120 seconds, or a 28:30 show) will either limit or expand the size of the opportunity. For example, your ability to run an efficient 60-second format can sometimes triple your profitable spending versus running a 120-second spot alone. The type of creative used can dictate scalability as well. Univision and Telemundo do not accept lip-synced creative, meaning a dubbed spot can severely limit a campaign’s ability to expand.
  • Spanish TV is mainstream. The most popular Hispanic TV network is Univision, with approximately 3.5 million prime-time viewers. In fact, it recently ranked No. 1 among all networks (including English) in the “Adults 18-34” demo during the July sweeps. Telemundo is ranked second with a prime-time audience of around 2 million. These broadcast networks are easily accessed by the general public, so ads and some popular programming (i.e., international soccer games and telenovelas) seen on these stations are frequently viewed or surfed over by the general market. Just 23 percent of the Hispanic population consumes Spanish-only TV content, with more than 60 percent watching programming in both languages.
  • Radio (online and on-air) is a high-value media channel. Latinos in almost every demo over-index in radio consumption compared to non-Hispanics. The same is true for online streaming and satellite radio as well — nearly 30 percent of Hispanics tune into Internet radio in any given week. With more than 835 Spanish-language stations, radio reaches 94 percent of U.S. Hispanic adults in an average week. In many major cities — New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Houston and Dallas — popular Spanish radio shows often lead their daypart. Hispanic radio properties can provide integrated media deals that include host endorsements, social media, remotes and on-air promotions.
  • A mobile-friendly, online presence is critical. Hispanics will research your product or service online but are more likely do it from a mobile device than a non-Hispanic. With more than 60 percent of Latino households owning at least one smartphone (vs. 42 percent for the general market), mobile online transactions continue to grow at high rates. Hispanics also tend to engage in social media more than the general public and are more likely to share product experiences through this channel. They have proven to be early adaptors of new products across several categories.

Marketing to U.S. Latinos is the new strategic imperative. Developing this core competency, as well as working with partners and vendors that have a keen understanding will be the key to success in driving future growth. ■


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