Are Retailers Targeting Hispanics In the Right Places At The Right Times?

Nielsen’s A Fresh View of Hispanic Consumers study reported that Hispanic shoppers are expected to wield $1.5 trillion in total buying power in 2015.

What’s the best way to reach this audience through digital advertising? It’s simple: Get to know them.

The tech-savvy Hispanic population is one of the fastest growing demographics in the U.S., but 66 percent of Hispanic men feel stereotyped by advertisers, according to Mintel research. That means many brands are missing out on valuable business, especially if their offers aren’t at play in mobile experiences.

Attract more customers with inclusive digital messages.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Hispanic peoples will make up 53 percent of the population by 2020. And their buying power continues to grow. In 2014 alone, AdAge estimates they had $168 billion in discretionary spending.

Additionally, as digital consumers, Hispanic audiences are more likely than non-Hispanics to:

Want to drive more in-store sales? Pay closer attention to how Hispanic consumers use digital media. Hispanic consumers are doing their homework before they arrive in-store.

  • 25 percent say they use mobile apps to download coupons to redeem in-store
  • 25 percent have used mobile devices to find store locations
  • 10 percent have used location-based services, such as Yelp, to help with shopping

 The bottom line: It doesn’t make sense for any brand to ignore Hispanic audiences. They’re using mobile devices and social platforms at home and on the go and are ready to be reached with more meaningful, relevant marketing messages.


Make messages resonate by putting them in the right places, in the right ways.

Simply translating ads from English into Spanish isn’t enough to pull at purse strings. Although Spanish-language advertising has been shown to resonate well with Hispanic consumers, 53 percent say they prefer reading online content in English only.

Location matters, too. What’s the point in targeting on a website your demographic doesn’t visit? For the best results, try sites Hispanic shoppers are most likely to visit, for example, Univision Digital, Terra Networks and Yahoo en Español.

But it’s the social interaction — or the cultural cues — that have the most influence over whether a campaign will drive actual in-store sales. Retailers would be best served by developing targeted digital campaigns centered on the cultural values that Hispanic communities holds dear.

To start, think about tradition and family. For these audiences, shopping can be an opportunity to spend time together, particularly during holidays such as Easter and Christmas. Thirty-four percent of Hispanics even view back-to-school shopping as a family activity. That’s 10 percent more than non-Hispanics. Think about what matters most to the audience and use that knowledge to send a message that really speaks to them in meaningful ways.

Case in point: Coca-Cola’s 2014 holiday campaign. The soft drink giant leveraged holiday values like service and kindness toward others with a cross-platform social media campaign inviting fans to post images of random acts of kindness using the hashtag #HazAlguienFeliz — “Make someone happy.”


Marketing on mobile devices packs the most punch.

Sixty-four percent of Hispanics between the ages of 35 and 49 use their tablet devices daily. Given the tendency to download apps and play games on mobile devices, it makes sense that marketers would want to focus on in-game offers and in-app messaging for the Hispanic consumer. What’s more, it’s important for marketers to make sure they engage these shoppers on their mobile devices with dynamic, data-driven ad content — whether it’s based on their location, past purchase behavior or, ideally, both.

A great leader in mobile, Macy’s recently deepened its relationship with Hispanic shoppers through mobile campaigns designed to promote in-store sales. Targeting Hispanic women between 25 and 54 years old, the Macy’s mobile campaign included both Spanish and English ads on mobile lifestyle, social gaming and entertainment channels, including Univision and

It was a smart move: More than half of Hispanics report looking for coupons before they consider buying. It also proves that with sophisticated GPS technology and new location-powered capabilities, driving and measuring foot traffic is no longer an obstacle for marketers.


Social media drives additional impact for engagement and in-store sales.

As the Coke campaign highlights, Hispanic consumers love social. In fact, they are more likely to purchase products advertised in social ads and more likely to follow brands on social media than non-Hispanics. But perhaps most importantly, Hispanic shoppers share content through social media five times more than non-Hispanics.

Target, for example, launched a campaign that asks Hispanic shoppers to share the words and experiences that make their culture unique, using the hashtag #SinTraducción — “Without translation.” Focused on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, the Target campaign aims to build brand awareness by making an emotional connection with Hispanic consumers.


When it comes to connecting with the Hispanic community, retailers can’t afford to take a wait-and-see approach. They must have strategies that are mobile, social and, most importantly, proactive. How can they connect with this $1.5 trillion market? Create thoughtful campaigns that speak with personal relevance in the channels Hispanic peoples are using to inform their shopping journeys. That’s how they can send the messages that matter and drive more sales.

What is your brand’s approach to targeting different demographics? Share what works for you in the comments below.

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