Hispanics are, for many companies, the greatest opportunity for current and future bottom line growth of their products and services. Despite the overwhelming statistics that support this statement, many companies have yet to go after this demographic. True, not all companies are in a position to do so, due to a lack of infrastructure to support the effort, but in many cases, these challenges can be overcome with the right marketing support and guidance.
Perhaps one of the most important factors, if a company is “Hispanic-ready,” has to do with communication. Do you have employees that speak Spanish and understand the culture? Do you have in-language collateral materials and a website that can accurately convey your messages, not just through straight translation, but also with cultural accuracy and sensitivity? Is your call center set up to receive calls in Spanish? These are just a few ducks you need to have in a row, and consider, before making a serious push into the market.
To seize this market opportunity, companies must become more educated about the Hispanic community, not just focusing on them as consumers, but as people, and the identity they represent as a diverse community. Like any marketing efforts, consumer insights can be a game changer.
There are many studies which show that Hispanics can embrace American culture without stripping away their cultural heritage. Yes, heritage is important to this demographic. Brands that are only interested in selling to them, rather than empowering their cultural relevancy can, in fact, turn them away instead of drawing them near. No one likes to be patronized, but that’s what some brands do by not understanding the culture and reinforcing clichés and stereotypes. It all boils down to this: Hispanics buy brands that empower their cultural relevancy.
Hispanics, as a group, tend to build trustworthy relationships with people and companies who actually take the time to understand who they are and what they represent ethically, morally, and culturally. Yes, cultural relevancy is a two-way conversation. Marketers must engage and open dialogue with consumers instead of having a one-way talk-at-you approach. Engagement allows Hispanics to adopt a brand with their own characteristics and personal value.
Furthermore, brand engagement with Hispanic consumers is about being able to show that your company, or brand, believes that their purchasing power and voice matters. On a more personal level, Hispanics also want you to earn the right to become a member of the family. This is how you ultimately build trust with this key, and highly coveted consumer group.