Managing The Huge Hispanic Marketing & Advertising Opportunity

Managing The Huge Hispanic Marketing & Advertising Opportunity

hispanicpopulationgrowthI’ve been invited to speak about business development strategy at AHAA’s annual conference in Miami on April 27th. AHAA is the only national trade organization representing the entire Hispanic marketing, communications, advertising and media industry.

I am looking forward to this opportunity because the Hispanic opportunity is… huge. In case you’ve been out of town, the United Sates is experiencing dramatic growth in our hispanic population — how is that for an understatement. I am sure that you are all well aware of our need to understand the Hispanic market and diverse culture. Need a reminder from the U.S. Census Bureau? Look left.

But, I am not sure that you know how digital the Hispanic group is. Here are some thoughts on this market from Google’s Think With Google.

You’ve likely heard the numbers: a 163% increase in population between 2010 and 2050, making up 30% of the population by July 1, 2050. One trillion dollars in buying power in 2010, rising to $1.5 trillion next year (an increase of 50% in just five years). I’m talking about U.S. Hispanics, of course—a consumer segment that’s on the radar of every Fortune 500 CMO.

At Google, we’ve taken notice of this audience too, but for a different reason: technology. U.S. Hispanics are ahead of the curve when it comes to digital. They lead in adoption of new devices. They are power users of mobile and over-index in video consumption. “Many marketers may think they trail the so-called general market in adoption of new tech, when in fact they are far ahead and should be among the first prospects for marketers seeking to grow their consumer base,” says Marla Skiko, senior vice president and director of digital innovation at SMG Multicultural.

Despite the facts, U.S. Hispanics are a vastly underserved market, and the opportunities to reach them through digital remain largely untapped.

Largely Untapped!

How can we have a market that will be over 47 million in 5 years and have it be ‘untapped’?

Key reasons include a lack of understanding of the Hispanic market by all types of agencies; the complexity of the market (not all Hispanics are alike) and the perceived cost of slicing and dicing multicultural markets into individual advertising campaigns. To resolve this problem, American marketers have discovered the idea of ‘Total Market’ marketing. AHAA defines Total Market as:

Much of the conference was devoted to debating the current hot topic, the total market, and the idea that as America becomes more multicultural, it makes sense to take a total market approach rather than looking at the general market and multicultural segments entirely separately. Before the conference, AHAA and the Association of National Advertisers collaborated to define and analyze TMA, giving the total market approach its own acronym.

In an abbreviated definition, TMA integrates diverse segments, and can lead to one integrated cross-cultural approach, or individual segments under one strategy.

More on the total market opportunity from ADAGE. After reading, you tell me… would you listen to Google or Walmart?

More Marketers Shifting From Multicultural Teams to ‘Total Market’ Strategy

Two years after Walmart made headlines by announcing that it was eliminating its “multicultural marketing team” and making multicultural marketing a business imperative for everyone at the company, a majority of marketers are adopting the strategy under its new name: Total Market.”Embedding a multicultural perspective into all of our efforts is not a choice,” said Gilbert Davila, CEO of Davila Multicultural Insights and Chairman of the Association of National Advertisers’ Multicultural Marketing and Diversity Committee, in opening remarks at the 15th Annual ANA Multicultural Marketing and Diversity Conference this week. “It’s a necessity. It’s time for us to embrace a total market approach, while still targeting individual demographics. In this plan, everyone is included. Everyone is represented. Every single time.”

I get some of this thinking and it sounds like the kind of internal client efficiency-speak that a CMO aims at their COO and CFO. But, I’ve run advertising campaigns across Asia and Europe and I can say that people from different cultures – even if they speak the same language –  do not think or act alike when they are in a shopper mode. There is no TOTAL in America, the EU, South East Asia or South America. Think tapestry. Think  unique cultures with distinctive needs and wants and reasons to purchase and media consumption (remember the Google quote above.)

Think Digital Not Total

I do not believe that the solution is a one-size fits all strategy. It is simply too lazy. And… fundamentally inefficient regardless of cost savings — as in it won’t do the job.

With our digital and social media ability to directly target discrete groups, even individuals (think small), especially ones like Hispanic families (think huge), why would a 2015 marketer move to a universal message? A message that might dilute a brand’s targeted sales opportunity?

I thought we went granular in 1999.

Again, remember what Google said “Despite the facts, U.S. Hispanics are a vastly underserved market, and the opportunities to reach them through digital remain largely untapped.”

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