A top executive at Entravision, the largest Univision affiliate group, said the company doesn’t expect GOP primary candidates to spend heavily in targeting Hispanics in the coming weeks. But the ultimate winner will as the general election takes shape. A key reason: during the primary season, is that Republican candidates look to appeal to the most right-wing of the party with tenets not embraced by many Hispanics.
During a general election, however, the GOP contender is likely to offer more moderate positions with more appeal to the key voting block. After success in 2008, President Obama is also likely to spend heavily on Spanish-language TV.
“GOP (now) is obviously focused on the Tea Party, they’re focused on the evangelists, the ultra-right-wing side of the party,” said Entravision CFO Chris Young at an investor event. “Latinos, as far as advertising is concerned on the political front, don't really apply.”
His comments come as the GOP primary race heads to Florida and Nevada in coming weeks, where Entravision has multiple TV stations.
Overall, the company, with 53 stations and a slew of radio outlets, is expecting a strong year with political dollars. Young said conventional wisdom holds that four states -- Colorado, Florida, Nevada and New Mexico -- could decide the election and Entravision has a combined seven stations there, including in the Albuquerque, Denver, Las Vegas, Orlando and Tampa markets.
Young also offered an update on the auto and telecom advertising categories, where the former is expected to grow and the latter to lessen at its business.
Auto spending makes up about 17% of Entravision’s TV revenue, up from about 11% during the depths of the recession. Entravision feels it has “momentum” to bring the dollars to 25%, similar to its English-language peers.
A trouble spot may be the telecom category with Verizon and AT&T, where dollars were down about 34% in the first three quarters of 2011. Young said the marketers may be steering away from mid- and small-market stations, where Entravision has the bulk of its operations. (That move could be just in the Hispanic marketplace.)
“The way we understand it is they’ve taken a shift as far as their advertising strategy,” he said. “They’re focusing on the top 10 to 15 markets across the country, and they’re taking dollars out of markets 15-plus.”