U.S. Census: How will marketers respond to U.S. Hispanic growth?

The 2010 U.S. Census, a count of all people living in the United States, shows that the Hispanic population now comprises 16 percent of the country’s total. As reported in a story by the NY Times, Hispanics are now responsible for more than half of population growth in the nation over the last decade, increasing 43 percent from the 2000 census.

Surely, as marketing budgets and programs are planned, greater weight will be given to addressing the communication needs of the Hispanic population. Communications professionals specializing in this audience have an opportunity to seize the moment and educate organizations on how to effectively reach Hispanics and dispel misconceptions.

One common misconception is that once bilingual Hispanics master the English language, they become “acculturated” and use English as their primary language. While the majority of U.S. Hispanics do speak English well, Nielsen reports that 61 percent of Hispanics aged 18 and older prefer to speak Spanish in their homes versus only 17 percent who say they speak only English. In family conversation and media consumption in the home, Spanish language remains important even after English proficiency is achieved.

Beyond language preferences, Hispanics are more receptive to targeted advertising, mobile advertising and new technology adoption than the general U.S. population, as a Scarborough Research report in 2010 has shown. Hispanics are also more likely to own a smartphone and use it to access mobile Internet, text messaging and e-mail.

Above is one of my personal favorite examples of marketing effectively to the U.S. Hispanic consumer, the “Somos Muchos” campaign from Toyota and Hispanic ad agency Conill. I think it’s a great example of a top-to-bottom campaign designed for Hispanics and Latinos, which clearly paid off for Toyota.

Thanks for reading!

References:
“A Growing Population, and Target, for Marketers”, NY Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/05/business/media…

2010 U.S. Census
http://2010.census.gov/2010census

“What You Think You Know vs. What You Need to Know About U.S. Hispanics And Media”, Nielsen
http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/media_entertainment/what-you-think-you-know-vs-what-you-need-to-know…

“Hispanics Are Important Mobile Marketing Targets”, Scarborough
http://www.scarborough.com/press_releases/Hispanic… (PDF)

Video: “Toyota Wins Back Hispanic Drivers With 259,000 Decals”, AdAge
http://adage.com/article/hispanic-marketing/toyota-wins-back-hispanic-drivers…

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  1. Your marketing blog is great! I love the research and the insight that goes into it. Keep up the great job.

    Sincerely,
    Jeffrey Zelaya

    • One problem with the CDC data is that it did not corontl for selectivity bias. A significant portion of the U.S. Hispanic population is comprised of immigrants who came here to work. We should expect that such immigrants were more likely to be healthy enough to work when they arrived here. The less healthy population of Mexico, Costa Rica, and other Latin American nations would never have made the trip.We should also expect that many immigrants who become unhealthy after arrival in the U.S. will choose to return to native countries – either to be with family or just to die in their homeland.I don’t know if the CDC is able to separate native U.S. Hispanic mortality data from immigrant Hispanic mortality data. If so, I expect mortality statistics would reveal the selectivity bias I described.

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