Hispanic voters are wielding more power at the ballot box, but political campaigns have lagged in their use of media targeting Hispanics, including Spanish-language media.
With that in mind, the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of
Commerce, which represents the interests of Hispanic businesses, announced a new initiative to track and analyze Spanish-language political ad spending in 10 key states with large Hispanic populations
in the run-up to the November elections.
The USHCC project, called “Speak Our Language,” will attempt to highlight the disparity between Hispanic voting power and political spending on Hispanic media, as well as the correlation between Spanish-language ad spending and positive electoral outcomes. It hopes to “hold 2012 campaigns accountable for their commitment to the country's Hispanic communities,” according to USHCC President and CEO Javier Palomarez.
“Speak Our Language” will focus on Spanish-language local TV, radio,
print, and online advertising, drawing data from Kantar Media’s Campaign Media Analysis Group.
CMAG data from the 2008 and 2010 elections showed big disparities between general Spanish-language advertising and political advertising spending in some key Hispanic markets -- which are located in swing states. For example, Kantar CMAG president Ken Goldstein noted that “in 2010, in Miami, Spanish-language stations garnered 31% of all non-political television advertising, but only 12% of the political advertising and in Denver, Spanish-language stations attracted 14% of all non-political advertising, but just a little more than one percent of political ad spending.”
At least one major Spanish-language TV network is urging Hispanic viewers to participate in this election.
In May, Azteca America and its parent company, Grupo Salinas, announced a partnership with Voto Latino, a nonprofit organization devoted to raising electoral participation in the U.S. Hispanic population, on a new cross-platform campaign of public service announcements urging Hispanics to vote.
Fundación Azteca America, a nonprofit
organization created by Grupo Salinas to advocate on behalf of U.S. Hispanics, is also continuing to support immigration reform with a campaign under the theme “I Too Am America,”
highlighting the role played by immigrants in U.S. history.
From 2000-2011, the U.S. Hispanic population grew 14.7 million, more than the rest of the population combined (14.5 million), to a current total of around 52 million, or about 16.8% of the overall population, according to a recent Nielsen study titled “The State of the Hispanic Consumer.”
In the next five years, Hispanics are expected to add another 7.4 million people. The total buying power of Hispanics living in the U.S. grew from $1 trillion in 2010 to $1.1 trillion in 2011, and is on track for $1.5 trillion by 2015, according to Nielsen.