MPA Reveals New Hispanic Research

Hispanic Americans give magazines high marks for credibility--and are also more likely to act on magazine ads than the population at large, according to new research presented today by the Magazine Publishers Association (MPA) and a number of partners in the Hispanic publishing business. The results, to be presented by the Hispanic Magazine Coalition at a series of magazine "road shows" around the country, shed light on some substantial cultural differences in media consumption.

The results come from a survey conducted by market research company Synovate of 901 Hispanic consumers, as well as 250 individuals drawn from the non-Hispanic population for purposes of comparison. Wayne Eadie, senior vice president of research for the MPA, said the findings suggest that Hispanic readers are highly engaged with consumer magazines.

According to the MPA, 85 percent of Hispanics read magazines, 47 percent trust information in magazines, and 43 percent trust magazine advertising. Thus, magazines have a substantial advantage over television ads--which are trusted by 38 percent--and Internet ads, trusted by just 25 percent. "In general, they approach magazines as both informational and aspirational," said Eadie, explaining why Hispanics are more likely to "view advertising as part of the reading experience." Far from intrusions, magazine ads model consumption, with 73 percent of respondents saying they gave them ideas about what to buy.



Not surprisingly, engagement is higher among publications targeting Hispanics with culturally relevant content. Although Eadie said this information wasn't included in the first edition of the report, it's in keeping with the high degree of attention and ad recall evident in members of other minority groups reading publications tailored to them. For example, previous studies of African-Americans and gay readers have found higher rates of retention for ads in culturally specific publications than those appearing in "mainstream" titles. Moreover, Hispanics, African-Americans, and gays also all show higher degrees of loyalty to brands with ads clearly targeting their group.

One interesting point is the apparent distrust and infrequent use of the Internet by Hispanics. In part, Eadie says, this may be attributable to lower rates of Internet penetration among immigrant households. Here, federal research released last week indicates that 44 percent of Hispanic children use the Internet, versus 67 percent of their white counterparts. Although the federal study didn't address use patterns among older people, it seems plausible that it's even more skewed.

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