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Jul 5, 2011
Casi el 15% de la población actual de EE.UU. es de origen hispano y su poder económico se espera que aumente a $ 1.087 millones en 2010.
Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics By Beth Goldstein©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 0Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com
Top Ten Miisttakes Companiies Make Markettiing tto HiispaniicsTop Ten M s akes Compan es Make Marke ng o H span csBy Beth Goldstein, Marketing Edge Consulting GroupIntroductionAlmost 15% of the current US population is Hispanic and their economic clout is expected to rise to$1,087 billion by 2010. This market is expanding rapidly and many companies and organizations areobviously trying to capture their share of this exciting growth opportunity. Unfortunately, many fail to seethe diversity of the Hispanic market and therefore misunderstand their buying habits, interests, needs andpreferences. The result can cause a misallocation of precious marketing resources like time, manpowerand money. Can you see the diversity of the market? If you can’t, then the Hispanic communityprobably can’t see you either and they won’t identify themselves with your company’s products andservices.This report outlines ten common mistakes companies make marketing to Hispanics (Latinos). Our goal isto provide you with insight that you can use to optimize your marketing investment and avoid wastingprecious time and money on campaigns that are simply ineffective. Let’s begin by reviewing just fivereasons you need to reach the Hispanic Community.©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 1Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com
Top Ten Mistakes1..1 Create Mailers in Spanish Because Last Names Sound HispanicUsing mailing lists strictly based on a person’s last name doesn’t guarantee your recipients speak Spanishor are even of Hispanic origin. An Hispanic sounding last name, like “Moreno” can be the result of amarriage or perhaps the person prefers to communicate in English. Last names can’t tell you criticalinformation such as their language preference. According to research firm Synovate (2006) 56% of allHispanic households are Spanish dominant, 26% are equally Spanish and English bilingual and 18% areEnglish only or more than Spanish. Therefore, understanding the language preference of the market youare targeting is as important as determining the variety of other demographic factors that impact theirpurchasing decisions such as gender, country of origin, household income, etc. You risk offending thevery group you want to appeal to if you simply mail information about your products in Spanish becausetheir surname sounds Hispanic.2. Lack of Biculturally Educated StaffTo build long-term relationships with Hispanic consumers, it’s important to not only hire Hispanic staff butalso educate non-Hispanic employees about bicultural differences and challenges. For example, do youknow if your prospects understand your products or what language they prefer to conduct business in? Asurvey by the Pew Hispanic Center and the Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that only 65% ofHispanics have bank accounts, compared with 95% of non-Hispanic whites. This is due in part to a lackof trust with financial institutions. Therefore, it’s no surprise that many Hispanics prefer to speak Spanishas their primary language when discussing important matters such as personal finance. If you’re afinancial services provider, understanding these cultural differences is critical and will impact your ability toservice your Hispanic customers. Successfully addressing these will help inspire trust and avoidunintentionally offending Hispanic consumers. If a company is genuinely interested in servicing the needsof Hispanics and can’t identify an individual within their organization with this knowledge, they must seekout expert(s) who can provide the support and education required for them to be successful.3. Convert a Website Into Spanish and Assuming That’s Sufficient forCommunicating with the Hispanic CommunityCompanies need to avoid the common mistake that multicultural marketing is just about translating awebsite into Spanish. When it comes to the Internet, the use of English is clearly dominant. However, fewcompanies have sufficient in-house expertise to transform their site so it addresses and speaks to the trueneeds of other cultures (especially if these individuals have not adopted the behaviors and beliefs of theirsurrounding culture). It is not enough to have a Spanish speaking employee simply translate theinformation on the website to Spanish. Companies need to ensure their sites are relevant and speakdirectly to their Hispanic audience. Successful Hispanic marketing efforts start with a thorough analysisand modification of the marketing message to personalize it for the audience’s needs and knowledgeabout the value of the products and services they provide.4. Lack of Spanish-Speaking Customer Service RepresentativesIt’s understandable that companies want to rush into advertising and promotional campaigns targetingthe Hispanic community. However, it’s critical that if a company mails a Spanish-language promotionthen they are prepared to service the Hispanic respondents in Spanish. All too frequently a companycreates a campaign targeting Hispanics and when the prospects respond there is no one available toexplain to them in Spanish how to complete the purchase or provide them with critical information aboutthe advertised products or services. Since rapport and relationship building is paramount with this loyal©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 2Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com
community, companies should not advertise products to the Hispanic market if they cannot fulfill requestsacross all customer touch points, from pre-purchase to post-purchase transactions.5. Fail to Educate Community about the Benefits of Products/Services OfferedMany companies fail to realize how important it is to educate foreign-born Hispanics about the benefitsof certain products/services, especially those they had no exposure to in their country of origin. Therefore,understanding acculturation is critical in determining your marketing message. Acculturation refers to howmuch one adopts the behaviors of the surrounding country. Some studies have shown that only 11% ofHispanics are highly acculturated, 64% are somewhat and 25% are not acculturated at all. Therefore,Hispanics who are less acculturated (have not adopted many US behaviors and beliefs) are often timesunfamiliar with American products, services and systems. These individuals simply don’t know what theseproducts are and/or don’t understand their value or relevance to their life. This disconnect can rangefrom food items that they didn’t have in their native country to services such as legal, financial and eventax preparation. Therefore, when marketing certain products to less acculturated individuals the messagemust primarily be an educational one. In fact, some companies have developed alliances with Hispanicorganizations to create websites that educate Hispanic consumers on how to make complicatedpurchases, such as buying a home. A good example is CreditSmart, a bilingual consumer educationprogram sponsored by Freddie Mac® that introduces participants (in Spanish and English) to theimportance of credit in the US and teaches them about critical money management skills.6. Assume Hispanics are Mainly in Lower Income BracketsThe Hispanic community is growing and evolving rapidly, unlike any other group in the US. While manyindividuals perceive the community to be mainly lower income (it is estimated that approximately one infive Hispanics lives in poverty), 14.5% are considered affluent with incomes over $75,000 1 . According tothe US Census the median household income in 2005 was $35,967 and there are over 1 millionhouseholds in the US with incomes over $50,000 (Source: Hispanic Market Report, Winter ’06)Furthermore, their purchasing power has been on a steady rise and as it continues to increase Hispanicswill have a significant need for many “new-to-them” products and services such as credit cards,mortgages, and consumer loans. Before implementing a marketing strategy, it is critical to create aprogram based not solely on current income levels and purchasing power but future trends in thecommunity. This will help ensure a company can capture strong market share as the community developsand evolves.7. Translate Material into Spanish but Send the Wrong MessageLike the creation of Spanish-language websites, merely translating existing marketing literature andproduct material into Spanish will not ensure the correct message is “heard” by your prospectivecustomers. It is essential to determine what information the community requires to make decisions andprovide that information (in Spanish, English or both). For example, the term mortgage can be directlytranslated as hipoteca. However, in many parts of Latin America a hipoteca is an action of last resort.When someone is in dire straits they may resort to taking a hipoteca on their home. This is the completeopposite perspective held by most Americans who view mortgages as a very positive experience, allowingthem to seize the “American Dream” of homeownership. Therefore, knowledgeable financial companiesattempting to attract the Hispanic community will use a more positive term in Spanish, such as préstamo,which is a loan, not an action of last resort.1 “U.S. Retail Banking and the Hispanic Market Growth Engine,” CMGP Hispano, March 1, 2004.©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 3Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com
8. View the U.S. Hispanic Market as HomogeneousIt’s important to understand that the US Hispanic market is incredibly diverse. Within the market aresignificant variances in buying habits, preferences, interests based upon country of origin, andacculturation levels (how much they have integrated and adopted American/general populationconsumption patterns and buying preferences). Companies must research the geographic area(s) theyare targeting and identify the difference factors that influence each specific community, to ensure theirmarketing message is accurate and appropriate. For example, if a bank runs a marketing campaign, themessage relevant to a recent Dominican immigrant may hold no meaning for a Puerto Rican-American,whose roots in the United States span several generations.9. Misunderstand Connectors and Symbols Affiliated with Each CultureThe ability to identify and recognize important cultural connectors for each Hispanic market will givecompanies insight that will help them communicate with the Hispanic consumer. Therefore, companiesmust have a solid understanding of who each group is and what they value to effectively deliver theirmessage. This connection can be made through artwork, music, religious expression, fashion/dress,food, holidays/fiestas and language. For example, Quinceañera (a 15-year old Latina) is the Spanishequivalent of a “Sweet 16” birthday party, except it’s often as elaborate as a wedding. When the largestfood retailer in New England discovered that Hispanic families often buy food for these parties weeks,sometimes months, in advance, the company began to run “Quinceañera Stock-Up” sales. It was thesupermarket’s way of acknowledging the needs of its customers and it also signaled to the Hispaniccommunity that this was a business interested in understanding and meeting their needs.10. Fail to Establish Relationships with Key Community Influencers & LeadersHispanics are an incredibly loyal community. However, if a company wants to gain their trust they mustmake an effort to genuinely support the community or risk being viewed as another business simply tryingto make money selling its wares. Therefore, capturing the Hispanic market represents an investment inmore than money. It requires time and patience to establish critical relationships with key communityinfluencers and decision-makers, such as leaders of local non-profit organizations and churches. TheHispanic community must believe that a company is going to be there for the long term. This is evenfurther underscored in industries like banking and insurance where recent immigrants tend to fearfinancial institutions due to their experience with corrupt institutions in their home countryNext StepsIn an attempt to reach out to communities whose cultural background and perspectives may befundamentally different from your own, nothing is more important than understanding their behaviors,beliefs, needs and preferences. With such incredible diversity amongst the Hispanic community, it’scritical to discover what each community’s needs are and what influences their decision-makingprocesses. This will make it easier for you to find common threads amongst the various groups andpresent a solid, unified message.©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 4Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com
Hispanic INSITE™ Market AssessmentThe information in this report should be used to help you better understand the vibrant Latino communty.If you need additional support to ensure you are creating the right message in the language and tonethat will reach the community and be heard, there are many resources available for you, including ourown two exclusive services: Hispanic INSITE™ Market Assessment and our HOPE™ (Hispanic OutreachPlan and Execution) Program.Hispanic INSITE™ Market AssessmentWe will work with you to evaluate the connection between the products and services you offer and theHispanic markets needs and interests. Well determine your Hispanic Readiness by assessing your abilityto meet these needs and capture market share. Once we have determined if targeting the Hispanicmarket is a solid business and financial benefit for your company then we will create and launch anintegrated marketing program to grow your business.Hispanic INSITE™ Market Assessment includes: INITIAL evaluation of the Hispanic market in the communities and markets you serve including: demographics, psychographics, beliefs, purchasing power, shared perceptions, values, needs and motivation levels. This involves primary and secondary market research techniques, including the identification of and communication with key community leaders and influencers within the Hispanic market. NEEDS-based analysis of the market relative to your company’s unique value to them. We will review the unique perspectives held by the community to determine how your value proposition and message aligns with their views and needs. STRATEGIC and tactical analysis of the industry and competitive forces impacting your business. It is important to understand how other organizations in your community and outlying communities are positioning themselves to support the Hispanic community. This will allow us to help position your business to compete effectively in the market. INFRASTRUCTURE review of your current sales and marketing goals and business structure. We will work with you to ensure you are able to deliver on your sales/marketing promise to the Hispanic community (i.e., do you have Spanish speaking customer service representative and material to support these relationships)? TARGET market analysis to determine potential size of the audience. We will identify the countries of origin and study acculturation levels to determine how the community is segmented. This will allow us to recommend marketing programs that will resonate with the community and are appropriate in terms of language, tone and value. EVALUATION of your current and future sales and marketing material to ensure maximum market awareness is reached and your message is on target. We will help you define how you can provide the greatest value to your current and future customers. We will also identify how the community prefers to learn about products/services and develop the best media strategy to reach them.Upon completion of the INSITE™ Assessment we will present you with an Executive Summary of ourfindings and recommendations. Next steps involve the execution of your tactical marketing programcompleted through our HOPE™ (Hispanic Outreach Plan and Execution) Program.©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 5Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com
HOPE™ (Hispanic Outreach Plan and Execution) ProgramOur ultimate goal is to help you launch a variety of robust campaigns that will grab the attention of andinfluence the Hispanic market to become satisfied, loyal customers. Based on the analysis and knowledgederived from the INSITE™Assessment, the sales and marketing program rolled out in the HOPE™Program may include executing some or all of the following strategies. Marketing collateral (brochures, pamphlets, stacked services/product cards) to help support your brand and allow you to communicate properly and effectively with the Hispanic community. This might be developed in English, Spanish or a combination of both. Newsletter to communicate with the Hispanic community (English and/or Spanish). This could be mailed or emailed as part of a welcoming package and outreach to the community as well as given away at fairs, community events and at local gathering places. Strategic partnerships with key business leaders and influencers of the Hispanic community Sponsorship of community activities appealing to the Hispanic community Spanish language advertising in newspapers and via local radio stations Public relations activities and other promotional opportunities Seminars to educate the community about the value and benefits your company provides to them Giveaways (in English & Spanish) to help promote and support brand awareness Direct mail campaigns to the Hispanic community in English and/or Spanish Spanish version of your website to maximize the comfort level of prospects interested in becoming customers and to ensure your message is clear and consistent©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 6Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com
Questions? For more information or to receive a free, initial consultation, contact Beth Goldstein Phone: 508.893.0976 Email: BethG@m-edge.com Online: www.m-edge.comAbout Marketing Edge Consulting Group Author of The Ultimate Small Business Marketing Toolkit (McGraw-Hill), Beth Goldstein is the founder and president of Marketing Edge Consulting Group , located in Massachusetts. Beth has empowered hundreds of entrepreneurs and companies to create successful marketing and sales programs for their businesses. Consultant, entrepreneur, & educator, Beth’s clients rely on her to help them develop solid customer profiles and customize marketing programs that build their customer base and push their bottom line to breakthrough levels of success.At Marketing Edge we focus on answering the questions that keep business owners up at night: What can I do to increase revenue? Why do my customers really buy from me and why do others buy from my competitors? How can I ensure customers are loyal to my business?Through research, surveys, interviews and one-on-one conversations with your customers, prospects andbusiness partners, we help you understand how your own customers think and what influences theirpurchasing decisions. With a solid Customer Profile in hand we help you develop and launch targetedsales and marketing programs that generate revenue, increase loyalty and improve your bottom line.In addition to consulting, Beth works with entrepreneurs at the Institute for Technology Entrepreneurship &Commercialization at Boston University and runs their Annual $50K Business Plan Competition. Sheteaches Entrepreneurial Sales and Marketing at the BU School of Management, is the Faculty Director forthe BU Online Certificate in Entrepreneurship Program (recently recognized by Fortune Small BusinessMagazine as one of the best e-learning entrepreneurship programs in the US) and is the Instructor for theInnerCity Entrepreneurs business growth program in Massachusetts. Beth has many years of direct industryexperience and holds an MBA from Boston University and a degree in Economics and Sociology fromBrandeis University.©Top Ten Mistakes Companies Make Marketing to Hispanics Page 7Marketing Edge Consulting Group, LLC www.m-edge.com