Hispanic Communications: 5 Things You May Be Doing Wrong

Urban legends of marketing to Hispanics


In numbers and purchasing power, U.S. Hispanics are increasingly grabbing the attention of brands. In 2013, Latinos accounted for 65.6% of the population and 58% of them were millennials. With Florida being one of the top states to lead this trend, we have seen first-hand how companies have adapted to these models but not always succeeded.

In light of Hispanicize 2015, a Hispanic marketing and public relations conference in Miami, here are the top 5 myths of marketing to Hispanics:

1. If you want to market to Latinos you have to translate your campaigns into Spanish: An English-language campaign translated directly into Spanish is a big NO. Direct translations can miss language nuances and fail to be culturally relevant. The best way to approach a campaign for U.S Hispanics is to get to know your audience or hire an agency that does. By doing so, you will have a better understanding of their behavior in exchanging goods and services.

2. Latinos don’t use new technologies because they are very traditional: When it comes to new technologies, Hispanics are trendsetters. 62% of Hispanics have access and are involved in forms of digital and social media. They find ways to stay connected to the world and succeed at it. Hispanics are also more likely to create digital content, such as blogs and videos, and engage in reviews about products and services. A traditional campaign geared towards U.S. Hispanics will fall short.

3. Word of mouth campaigns do not apply to Latinos: Most U.S. Hispanics’ consumer decisions come from word of mouth. What a cousin or friend said about a certain product or service often has more legitimacy than an ad in the paper. Latinos pay special attention to what people say about a product.

4. Hispanics lack purchasing power: Hispanics are savvy consumers with high purchasing power. Family needs are at the top of Hispanics’ shopping lists along with food, hygiene and cleansing products.

5. Bilingual Hispanics don’t watch Spanish television: A Latino’s knowledge of a language does not predict the way he or she chooses to consume their media. According to Nielsen, Spanish-dominant homes are inclined to watch television in Spanish. Bilingual homes are often indifferent to the language.

We live in a melting pot of distinctive backgrounds where one mold does not fit all. It is estimated that by 2050, Hispanics are going to account for 30% of the U.S. population. We will be seeing companies and agencies of all sorts make a large shift in the allocation of their budget and the way they approach all facets of marketing and public relations, so if you’re a marketer or publicist, be sure to keep these top myths in mind!