Hispanic marketing trends for 2005 predicted
Luis Garcia of Hispanic marketing agency Garcia360 answers some key questions on the future of marketing to Hispanics, and concludes that marketing to this significant demographic is not simply a case of literally translating existing campaigns.
According to Garcia, the most interesting trends in Hispanic Marketing in 2005 will be:
- Cross-functional business planning Corporations have realised that the Hispanic/Latino market presents a huge opportunity, and will go beyond a media only marketing solution to include integrated marketing, product development, customer service, internal training/readiness, and corporate responsibility. The winning strategies for 2005 and beyond will address this market opportunity with an integrated all-round business strategy.
- Grassroots marketing is finally seeing it's day Investment in events and sponsorships will increase, enabling brands to expand into the community outside the traditional media channels. Marketers realise that competitors are entering the market fast and furiously and that there is an edge to be found for companies who get their brand into the hands of the consumer first. That is why events and other on-the-street tactics are becoming more valuable.
- The branded TV show will return Another trend that Garcia predicts is the revival of the branded TV show, where product integration beyond placement is negotiated at the time of the media buy. When this has been done successfully, the result has been a much stronger recall and understanding of the message.
While content integration has been happening on English TV, Garcia predicts much more of this on Spanish language TV, especially as smaller hungrier media competitors enter the market, like TV Azteca, which is willing to integrate. Telemundo does this well already because its production facilities are in the US, giving it more control of the content development and production.
True commitment According to Garcia, the Hispanic market is beginning to understand its own significance, so simply recognising its presence (say, by doing a few adverts in Spanish) will fall short of engaging them in a meaningful way. He says that Hispanics want truly committed companies that not only want to sell to them, but go further to embrace them in everything they do. People need to view Hispanics as consumers, neighbours, employees, investors - just like everyone else.
Hispanics are poor and rich, tall and short, married and single, employed and unemployed, progressive and traditional. They are unique in behaviour and customs but are part of the overall marketplace, entering society at all levels and in all areas of interest/lifestyle. Hispanics are re-defining the 'General Market'.
"I think the biggest misconception today is that you should have the general market plan and then separately the Hispanic plan. That makes no sense! In places all over the country, if you aren't talking to Hispanics, you're not talking to the market as a whole," warns Garcia.
Market changes The size and impact of the Hispanic community today is changing the way people view Hispanics and changing the way Hispanics see themselves. As marketers scramble to appeal to Hispanics, a proliferation of products, services and marketing increases the power that Hispanics yield as consumers. The impact has been seen in politics, food, music, fashion, and so on.
This is creating legitimate and exciting opportunities for Hispanics and elevating society as a whole. Hispanics are moving up and into all areas of society, bringing innovation, strong values and work ethic to everything they do.
Mistakes to avoid Garcia stresses the importance of simply literally translating existing campaigns: "Literal translations have killed great campaigns. Hire an expert who truly understands the market and will help you position your brand in the best light."
Another pitfall to avoid is that of thinking that Latinos are primarily low price consumers. They are quality seekers, and they are generally willing to pay a bit more if the perceived quality is better. Many companies are losing money due to this misconception because they are not offering higher-end product lines to Latinos who would readily buy them.