When speaking to the US Hispanic (Latinx) community, it’s important for brands to remember a few key tenets. Most importantly, that the Latinx market is not one monolithic group. There are different facets of generations and ethnicities that make up this group, and each want and respond to different things. No matter what subset of the Latinx audience a brand is targeting, it’s crucial to speak with an authentic voice and tone that proves you have an understanding of the market and know how to be genuine in your outreach.
Managing Misconceptions + Silencing Stereotypes
Advertisers must look at Latinx audiences by segments. There is no one size fits all solution or strategy that can be applied to the overall market. Consider the generation—and not just age group. Are they first-generation or do they have established family roots in the US? What about ethnicity? Many assume the US. Latinx audience only includes Mexican Americans when, in reality, this audience comes from many different countries and ethnic groups. What is culturally relevant to Venezuelans is significantly different than what will resonate with Cubans. For example, depending on the ethnicity, baseball or soccer may be the most popular sport. Since the Latinx market is fragmented, it’s essential for advertisers to identify true similarities that can appeal to their target audience.
Language used to be the go-to strategy to reach the Latinx market, but today we know that couldn’t be further from the truth. Another stereotypical concept is the idea that all Latinxs can relate to a quinceañera, which is not celebrated by all groups and can depend on country of origin. Advertisers must identify the true similarities that bridge audiences of different backgrounds in order to remain authentic to each culture. This can be accomplished by highlighting commonalities and determining a concept that is relatable to the entire audience being targeted—whether that is family, friends, music, or food.
In order to create a successful, relevant campaign for the Latinx audience, brands must include feedback directly from the target demographic in a strategy session. Research and Analytics are a key piece of campaign ideation, garnering valuable insight into what the audience is looking for and what will resonate best. However, it’s essential to consider qualitative data in addition to quantitative when considering audience sentiment. It’s easy to lose sight of individual feelings or perceptions when solely looking at numbers.
Factors like tone and passion are often lost, which are critical with Latinx consumers who are proud of their background and heritage. Listening to the consumer will allow advertisers to create campaigns that speak to the audience directly, appealing to their interests, and demonstrating that the brand has done their homework and is coming from a place of understanding and respect for their cultural identity.
From past experience, in-culture messaging can drive results for brands, and Latinx users are more likely to feel culturally connected to a brand after seeing these tailored campaigns. Authentic connections with any audience are invaluable as they promote brand loyalty and can favorably drive consideration. For Latinxs, this can go even further as they are devoted brand loyalists for long periods of time, which when combined with the fact that they also have more years of spending power than non-Latinxs, translates to a significant opportunity and worthwhile investment for advertisers.
In order to leverage and maximize every platform popular among Latinxs, brands must also take a strategic, personalized approach when it comes to influencer programs. These social media powerhouses have carefully cultivated their image and personal brands, building an audience of consumers who have a strong connection with them. An influencer’s followers pay attention to what they are saying and how it is presented to them because both parties share similar experiences, interests, and backgrounds, therefore instilling trust in the recommendations and content being shared.
Brands can’t just push their commercialized content to the influencer and expect results. Instead, working closely alongside the influencer and involving them in the creative process will help keep the branded content authentic and help it truly resonate among their followers. In the end, a collaborative approach is the best way to nurture brand awareness and acceptance.
Media consumption habits and preferences are rapidly evolving within the Latinx market. In the past, many advertisers focused their efforts on broadcast. However, even the older generations are increasingly adapting to digital and mobile as access and intuitiveness grows through offerings like Connected TV. Advertisers must pay close attention to how different generations are interacting on different platforms.
While a mix of broadcast and digital may be preferable to older audiences, it’s important to also consider social strategies for younger audiences such as Gen Zs, especially since a recent study has shown that the 61 percent of second-generation and 90 percent of third-generation Latinxs do not watch Spanish-language television. These generations consume a significant amount of media on social and other digital properties, so advertisers should focus on the platforms they actively use to effectively reach and influence this Latinx consumer segment.
As brands ramp up their Latinx marketing efforts to meet the increasing influence and purchasing power of this group, they must take a thoughtful, genuine approach. Direct audience feedback, research and insights, and collaboration with relevant influencers will help create experiences and journeys that are authentic to this audience and will result in success.