In our experience, Hispanic marketing campaigns occupy small line items (if any) on annual marketing budgets. Instead, most businesses rely on sporadic campaigns to engage with this demographic.
Times are changing. Demographics are shifting. And businesses must take notice to keep up.
Hispanic population growth is significant. In the past 10 years, Hispanics made up 52% of all U.S. population growth and already make up the nation’s largest multicultural segment. 60 million Americans trace their heritage to Spanish-speaking countries in Latin America and to Spain. This equates to approximately 18.5% of the U.S. population, or nearly one in five Americans.
Hispanics are also America’s youngest demographic group, with 61% younger than 35, compared with 47% of non-Hispanics. Gen Z is the most diverse generation we’ve ever seen, with half being racial or ethnic minorities.
Hispanic spending power is growing too. Hispanic spending power in the U.S. is also on the rise. According to our research, Hispanic consumption outpaced non-Hispanic consumption by 133% this past decade. For comparison, if Hispanics who live in the U.S. made up their own country, it would rank as the eighth-largest world economy. Hispanics in the U.S. have a GDP of $2.6 trillion, which is growing 72% faster than the nation’s overall economy.
Marketing messages need to be personalized for Hispanics. It’s not enough to create a bigger "one-size-fits-all" marketing strategy and assume it engages with Hispanics through a “mass market” strategy.
Although there may be some truth to the reach given Hispanics make up more than 20% of the mass market, here's the important reality: the message isn’t resonating. Messaging needs to be unique and speak directly to individual values and life experiences. That requires tailored campaigns, in addition to appropriate budgets.
Our research indicates that most Hispanics find that messaging relevant to their interests was the most important feature of an ad, with traditions and culture being especially critical. Having someone that looked like them also ranked as a top preference.
Hispanics’ connection to their culture and heritage has changed over the years, with them identifying more with their Hispanic culture than previously. In fact, there’s a need for nuanced authenticity in marketing content, especially related to aspects such as familial structure, language and socio-political views.
What speaks to this group varies significantly across the Hispanic community. Younger Hispanics have pointed out that ads speak more to their parents or elders than to them. Given the median age of Hispanics is 28, that’s an opportunity for brands to build loyalty.
Where Hispanics spend their time is also diverse. Social media and connected devices dominate Hispanic attention spans. That's important for marketers to understand, as we’ve seen that the majority of them are most likely to notice a digital ad on social media. This is also where they usually learn about new brands and products.
Hispanic consumers are also strong consumers of digital news but find that only a small percentage of brands are trying to reach them online. They are also rapid first-adopters of up-and-coming platforms - TikTok use by Hispanics has boomed exponentially just in the last year.
Given the Hispanic audience is largely "digital-first," companies need to transition their brand’s message to where the audience is shifting -- to digital and connected TV (CTV) and away from both “mass market” budgets and Hispanic linear television. Hispanics are increasingly using CTV platforms or services, and most of themdo not watch Spanish-language TV regularly.
Hispanics are interacting with connected mobile devices more than ever before and there is no sign of it slowing. Companies would be wise to take notice and increase their marketing spend.