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En Español: Where to Find Growth in 2017 and Beyond?

1 Apr, 2017 By: Denira Borrero Response

U.S. Hispanics continue to stay on most marketers’ radar screens as a large, influential consumer group and a critical component to sustainable growth. Recent research suggests that they will only increase in strategic importance as their current and projected growth rates are outpacing non-Hispanics in not only buying power ($1.7 trillion by 2020) and population (57 million), but also in college enrollment and household income.

Capturing U.S. Hispanic share of wallet, however, requires an ability to understand and follow the most current media consumption and buying behaviors of the intended Hispanic demo — which differ depending on language preference, age, immigration generation, and country of origin. There are, however, some common elements and market trends that are apparent across most Hispanics that can drive near-term marketing and investment decisions targeting the segment.

  • Spanish-language TV maintains the highest live viewership — by a wide margin: While delayed streaming has become a challenging element in traditional TV advertising, the Spanish-preferred Hispanic audience has the highest level of live viewership among all audiences and across media properties. In fact, 2017 tracking data shows Spanish-language broadcast channels such as Univision and Telemundo recording better than 90-percent live viewership (vs. 56 percent for English-language broadcast stations and 74 percent for English-language cable). Driving more value per media dollar, this gives a higher predictability for response rates, timing, and reach. This is a critical value opportunity for all marketers, but particularly important for retail campaigns targeting audience reach during specific high-foot-traffic shopping days and/or seasonally sensitive categories.
  • Hispanics are significantly over-indexed or under-penetrated in certain categories. If your product or service falls in an over-indexed category and you are not including Hispanics in your marketing mix then you are likely missing a huge growth opportunity — and will likely lose future market share to competitors who do. Based on the most current consumer spending data, the following are just a few key categories that Hispanics have shown significant over-index in spending compared to the general market: health, beauty, household appliances, telecom, movies, home buying, and clothing. There are many more categories that Hispanics buy similarly to non-Hispanics but that are under-penetrated by marketers and can represent tremendous opportunity. Consider financial services, insurance, and the natural supplement categories — where the general market was oversaturated with competitors, yet see tremendous untapped demand when marketing in-language to Hispanics.
  • Hispanics are extremely social, both offline and online. Based on their cultural tendencies to share, have large friend and family networks, purchase based on word of mouth, and engage strongly in social media, U.S. Hispanics have been recognized as “super influencers” — particularly in over-indexed categories such as beauty, music, food, and clothing. They transition smoothly between bilingual networks and have far-reaching “total market” impact beyond the Latino segment. A marketer looking to launch a new product can benefit from targeting Hispanics through Spanish-language content and digital techniques to increase overall market awareness and get an effective viral bang for their marketing buck.
  • In-language and in-culture outreach matters. Whether the Hispanic household is bilingual or mostly Spanish-speaking, Hispanics prefer brands and advertising that target them specifically with language and cultural appeal. Based on recent Nielsen brand data, ads in Spanish had a 32-percent lift in likeability, along with a 26-percent increase in brand recall among Spanish-dominant, adult 35+ households (English ads showed only an 8-percent lift in likeability and a 5-percent lift for brand recall in the same homes). A similar effect is seen in bilingual homes where brands that advertise in Spanish have higher resonance. This segment, regardless of generation, has a deep connection to its heritage and remains loyal to brands that present relevant content.

A current and keen understanding of the evolving purchasing and media consumption behaviors of this large and influential market segment will assure a stronghold for future growth. ■

About the Author: Denira Borrero

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