Why Consumer Products Company CEOs Should Be Focusing on the Hispanic Market

Understand the Data
Your marketing department’s understanding of this segment must be data driven. Nielsen reported earlier this year, for example, that Latinos are adopting smartphones faster than other U.S. ethnic and racial groups, which has important implications for technology and digital services companies. Some 72% of Latinos over 18 own smartphones, according to Nielsen, which is almost 10% higher than the national average. And 49% of those polled said they planned to purchase new smartphones in the next six months.

“Your marketing department’s understanding of this segment must be data driven.”

And Yet……Everyone Is Changing
Having said all that, don’t expect things to stay the same. The U.S. consumer is undergoing a profile shift—an economic, social and cultural transformation often dubbed “New Americanism.” The fascinating cross-pollination of media, language, food and culture is bringing a new multicultural consumer to the fore.

Millennial Hispanics, for example, are changing this market as they straddle their own traditions with the American mainstream. Some 64% of Hispanics are now born in the U.S., up from 58% in 2000, according to the 2012 U.S. Census, and 70% of Hispanics identify as bicultural.

Pepsi, for example, has shifted its marketing to the multicultural consumer and in doing so found that Hispanic interests go beyond soccer to an active interest in the NFL.

As the Hispanic-focused agency for the California Milk Processor Board, we recently took a “one market approach,” working with the Board’s English-language agency, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, on a creative campaign designed to get consumers to buy and drink more milk. We co-developed universal TV spots with voiceovers in English and Spanish to speak to California’s multicultural consumers. One spot featured a black mother and daughter, who could easily have been either Caribbean Hispanic or African American.

As ever, California is on the leading edge for the rest of the country, an indicator that tomorrow’s markets will present CPG companies with exciting new challenges in addressing the new American consumer. CEOs of consumer products companies should be ready.

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John Gallegos is the founder and CEO of Grupo Gallegos, a creatively-driven, independent advertising agency based in Huntington Beach, CA. He is known for looking beyond marketing and advertising solutions to create ideas that advance and expand his clients’ business.