July 03, 2010

   Have been following a blog dedicated to Cross Culturalism by Ken Muench who is now at DraftFCB in Chicago via Grupo Gallegos and Casanova Pendrill.

He posted a couple of months ago numbers that he states reflects theUgly Truth about our US Hispanic advertising Industry.

The 58% De-Solution of targeting US Hispanic in Spanish and through Spanish-language media.

He states basically that the sky has fall in on our Industry.  That the majority of Hispanic do not view Spanish-Language television.  Ok, there are those that do not and those that do.

One view represent the current business model of today’s US Hispanic advertising and media industry and the other view is one that needs to grow larger wings and learn to fly.

In an e-mail conversation with David Chitel of the New Generation Latino Consortium (I like what he is doing with his conference again and trying to help our Industry) we have gone back and forth regrading the specific issue with the 58% De-Solution.

I submit to all of you what I wrote once I read the posting again:

I know Ken,  do not always see it the way he does (referring to other pieces I have read on his blog).

Interesting to note, that he is right (directionally) when you abstract the numbers (his way).

The business model of Spanish-language strategies to target US Hispanics generates $5B in advertising/revenue.

The business model of English-only to reach Hispanic does not always require a dramatic change in current mainstream advertising efforts and media placement, thus not offering the potential to be worth $5B in new advertising revenue or even a need to have talented professional to guide clients through the process to reach English dominant Hispanics.

¡Cuidado!    Gene Bryan

I should have added that maybe the only thing you need is a good creative and none of the other disciplines in our industry if you take this approach of the 58% De-Solution.

¡Bonito y Barato!

The question here is not that some Hispanics can be reach effectively and efficiently in English-only media.  The question here is there a bona fide business model for our Industry?

It’s all about the Benjamins !

Read Ken Muench's piece CLICK HERE  and I do want to hear from you.

Gene Bryan


For months, Hispanic marketers and advertisers have predicted that Census 2010 will bring to light what many statisticians, researchers and agency heads have known for years – the U.S. Hispanic market is bigger than ever and still ripe for major growth. Thus, ad dollars should be set to once again flow like a raging river into Spanish-language media. At least that’s what Hispanic advertising and marketing pros are hoping for, almost with a “wish it so” bravado. Truth be told, there’s no guarantee or any indication thus far that Census 2010 will unleash the torrent of advertiser dollars seen by Hispanic-focused media for much of the 2000s. That’s scary, actually. Spanish-language media has hit its proverbial fork in the river, and Census 2010 will only create more rapids and steer navigators further from choices en Español. ¿Porqué? ***As the Hispanic population in the U.S. further increases, the use of Spanish-language media will flatline or eventually decrease.*** Researchers have predicted it. Statisticians have displayed the data. But the Collective refuses to accept what’s set to come. In eight short years, the Hispanic marketing and advertising world could be vastly different than the one we know today. Here are Eight Predictions For 2018: 1. Hispanic advertising agencies will hold 40 percent of all accounts for Spanish-language creative, media buying and planning. The majority of accounts will be led by newly established full-service Latino divisions of general-market agencies. "JWT Hispano," "Omnicomm Latino," "CPB Hispanic" and "Publicis Groupe Latino" will represent the bulk of AHAA membership. Big accounts such as The Home Depot will be housed in these divisions. 2. "Inexplicably," Spanish-language radio stations will decline in number, continuing a trend started in 2014 as younger Latinos gravitate toward English-language Top 40. Current gold-based formats will, however, gravitate toward a new form of Latin Pop from U.S.-based artists. The AM band will lose the most Spanish-language stations, as listeners age out of favorable advertiser demos in Miami, New York and Los Angeles. 3. Spanish-language newspapers, following the lead of their non-Latino brethren, will cease to publish on a daily basis — with the exception of La Opinión in Los Angeles and el Nuevo Herald in Miami. In most markets, free weeklies will offer news and sports for Spanish speakers but will mainly serve as a way for retailers to distribute circulars and advertising. 4. With limited growth and "hold steady" projections in both ratings and revenue, Univision/TeleFutura/Galavisión and Telemundo/Mun2 each announce their intentions to develop English-language content for "U.S. programming to Hispanics." Buzz about TeleFutura’s rebirth as an English-language network is leaked by Hispanic AdAge — the lone remaining source for Hispanic marketing and advertising news. 5. Thanks to immigration reform passed by Congress in 2013, markets such as Dallas, Phoenix, Fresno, Yakima, Des Moines, Kansas City, Indianapolis and Atlanta become the new hotbeds for Spanish-language ad dollar growth. However, the percentage growth pales in comparison to that seen in the 1990s and 2000s. Thus, Spanish-language media growth is tepid, leading one operator to consider Chapter 11. 6. On a positive note, digital/online growth continues a decade-long trend. U.S.-based Spanish-language portals and social networking sites continue to attract a bevy of advertisers. 7. DEPORTES EN FUEGO -- The NBA, thanks to its efforts in the early 2010s to lure Latinos, retires its “Noche Latino” events following the hugely popular 2017 “Ene-be-a En Fuego” road tour, bringing Latino basketball stars to schools, clinics and community events as part of the NBA’s Mes de Estrellas. At the same time, the National Football League, working in concert with all of its teams, launches “Cadena NFL” - a Spanish-language version of the NFL Network available exclusively on Dish Network and on the NFL’s new 6G-enhanced web portal, allowing for access from cars, mobile devices and iBooks. The move comes after the long-term 2017 renewal of NFL coverage on Azteca 7 and Azteca 13 in Mexico. Meanwhile, Major League Baseball announces that it will hold the 2020 All-Star Game in Mexico City, following the election of new leadership that cleans up corruption and a 8-year bloody drug war that nearly cripples the nation's tourism and trade and puts a five-month freeze on NAFTA. Discussion of the relocation of the Washington Nationals to San Juan, Puerto Rico heats up but ultimately disappears. 8. The U.S. Supreme Court strikes down "English Only" laws enacted in 2013 by Alabama and in 2015 by both Georgia and South Carolina, arguing that such laws are ambiguous and infringe on both an individual's right but also religious rituals, as Latin, Arabic and Hebrew would be prohibited. California celebrates as a balanced budget deficit is reached for the first time in seven years - helped in part by the 2012 passage of Proposition 55, which allowed for all undocumented immigrants in the state to apply for "visitor worker status" while paying into a "visitor worker taxation" plan administered by the state in cooperation with the I.R.S. Florida Inter-Caribbean Trade Council and Cubanos en Exilio meet for the first time with newly elected Cuban President Carlos Michael Morales Rodriguez to discuss Cuba's entrance to NAFTA. The discussions are the first since the 2016 demise of Communism and first multi-party elections since the 1950 and come two years after the death of Raúl Castro; three years to the day after the announced death of Fidel Castro; and 17 months after American Airlines, JetBlue and Delta (absorbing Spirit's routes in 2017) begin non-stop service to La Habana from Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa, and all five New York-area airports. I could be totally crazy. Or I could be right on target. What do you think?

Hola Gene! My intentions with the analysis were not to be chicken little, nor were they to start a war, but rather to point out the fact (which everyone is quite aware of anyway), that unless you do something in English, you're going to miss a huge chunk of Hispanics. That's it. Now, in my day job, like most of you, I spend countless hours convincing clients to advertise to Hispanics in Spanish. (And I have the powerpoint cuts to prove it!) My clients see huge results from Spanish advertising. No question it's a critical part of the mix. But it's not an end-all solution. (or does someone really think some Spanish ads are all you really need to tap into the $1 trillion in Hispanic spending power?) In short, the gist... Can you do effectively target Hispanics without Spanish advertising: no Can you do effectively target Hispanics without English advertising: no Saludos Gene! (by the way, I totally agree with Linda Gonzalez on every single point. I have a post about something very similar: http://bit.ly/92QXvG )

While I agree with the numbers, I am not sure I will qualify the situation as "Ugly truth" or that "the sky has fallen in our industry“ . The figures presented have been around in similar proportions for quite some time now; so, it's not really news. I prefer look at the big picture focusing on the basics: reach and effectiveness. Obviously, the role of Spanish media has always been to complement the shortcomings of English media in these areas. On Reach. Everyone knows that not any single channel is going to give you the maximum obtainable reach. That's why any given General Market plan has multiple channels; from the basic ABC, NBC, CBS, to obtain broad base reach to specialty channels to expand your reach in a more targeted manner i.e.: Lifetime, MTV, Discovery, Univison. So within this context, let’s be real, if you don’t buy Univision or Telemundo you are not optimizing your reach. This has been and continues to be the foundation for our industry. On effectiveness. Spanish TV allows you to be 100% culturally relevant. Consequently, every study I have seen shows that recall, comprehension and relevance are simply higher when comparing English versus Spanish. So, those watching Spanish TV are effectively reached. This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone particularly when the language spoken at home (by choice) is 78% Spanish. Now, for Hispanics watching English TV, the truth is that the more you are fully acculturated the more the regular General Market message in English works fine. You don’t really need anything else. So that leaves us with the remaining lot of those who are reached by English TV but are not acculturated whomever they might be (moms, dads, girls, boys, etc.) Although a major portion of this group is also being reached by Spanish TV with a culturally relevant message , the proposal I hear is that they might be the ones needing English language Hispanic advertising.. OK, let’s just keep two points into consideration. 1) The advertising has to be sensitive to the General Market viewer. You don’t want to alienate the largest portion of the audience and 2) you have to make sure that the General Market media plan includes English TV programming watched by Hispanics. Final comment, yes, General Market agencies can do the job. It's easy for them to hire the appropriate talent if they wanted to and even easier if English is the focus. Well, this is only food for thought based on TV since the article was focused on this medium. While thinking about it however, consider also that everything is going beyond TV. The internet we all know is more flexible and allows for as many languages as you want, so you are not forced into one or another. Incidentally, Spanish is the third most important language in the internet, behind English and Chinese. Source: Internet World Stats

First - Thanks Gene for encouraging this dialogue! Like many of you, I've read Ken's blog and to some extent believe there's something there. However, we're all pretty good at pinching and pulling at data to help persuade our audience. And rather than writing an exhaustive monologue that points out the rights and the wrongs of Ken's assertions, I'll keep it short. Within the last several months, we completed a comprehensive consumer market research study for one of our CPG clients (large, well known and Fortune 1000) targeting women between the ages of 18-40, Spanish dominant, bilingual and English preferred in Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Dallas, Chicago and 3 emerging Hispanic markets. Through a combination of Hispanic-focused qualitative research methodologies, we spoke face to face with several hundred of our target, in Spanish, English, Spanglish, Half & Half - you name it - consumer's choice. What we found that was so striking for the client (and the future of the client's brands!) was that 2nd and even 3rd generation Hispanic consumers were including Spanish-language media in their daily media consumption. Spanish TV, Radio and Online made up an average of 35% of their mix. They continue to watch novelas (often with groups of friends, several times a week), listen to Spanish Radio and frequent sites that are Hispanic (regardless of language) that are relevant to and resonate with them. In several markets, 2nd and 3rd generation female participants admitted they didn't speak Spanish very well, but Spanish Radio and some Spanish TV are in the mix because they are part of their "cultural comfort zone." Another described it as literally - their cultural comfort food! This is not to say that bilingual 2nd generation Hispanics will not drive market growth - as no doubt the Census will prove - but I am saying that the Hispanic market is driven by our CULTURE! And language is an intrinsic part of culture! And, this being said, implies that Hispanic agencies will have to garner even deeper insights into the 2nd generation Hispanic - because no matter the growth of "Latino" departments among general market multinational agencies - consumer insights can't be transcreated or adapted from the general market. The agencies best equipped to guide brands through this growing quagmire are those agencies that have a deep understanding of the Hispanic consumer and can communicate with them respectfully and genuinely. Regardless of language.

Gene: Thanks for turning me on to a great blog. I enjoyed reading Ken's post. Robert Rose, and others, have been shouting these same arguments since the turn of the century. I love programming en español, but I have always wondered why it has to be solely in Spanish? Why can't it be bilingual? I don't know, I just think we're ready for so much more, as a community. Maybe the programming will evolve towards something that speaks more to all Latinos in the US, rather than primarily to immigrants. I tend to think the current state of Spanish-language television only helps in separating us from the general market, from our multicultural society. It's just my opinion. Again, thanks for suggesting Ken's post/blog and have a great 4th. - hc -

I'm more of a mouthy punk than an expert...so you may be asking too much of me!

I am glad to see Ken Muench from DraftFCB / CrossCulturalism.com has joined our conversation regarding the 58% De-Solution. I respect Ken and he has been a Judge for our HispanicAd.com - Hispanic Account Planning Excelencia Awards (HAPE). Ken, I am glad to see you helped stir the conversation with your piece and do not worry about creating a war. <strong>Business is WAR. ¡Punto!</strong> The reality is that that we need to change many ways in how we look, target and deliver US Hispanic Consumers. What keeps me up at night is not that particularly. We will better understand and create those effective and efficient strategies, we own the skill-set. <em>What keeps me up at night are the people who believe just because they have a job in our industry, they are experts. Just because you have an opinion doesn’t consider you a source.</em> I would like to see some voices rise like a Phoenix to become the experts in the use of English to reach US Hispanics, and I submit to you a definition of expert by Wikipedia: An expert is someone widely recognized as a reliable source of technique or skill whose faculty for judging or deciding rightly, justly, or wisely is accorded authority and status by their peers or the public in a specific well-distinguished domain. An expert, more generally, is a person with extensive knowledge or ability based on research, experience, or occupation and in a particular area of study. An expert can be, by virtue of credential, training, education, profession, publication or experience, believed to have special knowledge of a subject beyond that of the average person, sufficient that others may officially (and legally) rely upon the individual's opinion. The individual was usually a profound thinker distinguished for wisdom and sound judgment. The proper balance on how to understand, communicate, reach and persuade all US Hispanic is a conversation that allows us to own ‘El Insight’ that is not a commodity in our Industry, a la media buying in recent years. As professionals, we need to understand and be responsible for how the conversations are occurring, in what context and how they are being perceived by clients. <strong>Our INDUSTRY is at stake.</strong> Gene Bryan CEO HispanicAd.com

Gene, I think this is a great topic and hope to see many more responses, opinions, etc. I agree with Linda, anyone can take numbers, statistics, etc., and use them to make a point. I did read Ken's piece and believe that there is some truth to what he is saying. But is that the total picture? What about the 2009 Global Insights study that said 78% of US Hispanics age 5+ speak Spanish at home? While most every one of them may speak English outside the home, you can't overlook that statistic, can you? Where are buying decisions made? At home, right? Again, you can use numbers from different sources to make your point. At this time, there is no right or wrong answer here, but to dismiss Spanish-language media as almost irrelevant seems wrong. I'm not saying that Ken actually says that, but it does seem to be the tone of his article. It seems to me that Spanish-language media is still a powerful means of reaching US Hispanic RIGHT NOW. Will that change? Yes, but it won't happen overnight. To ignore the significance of Spanish-language media at this time doesn't seem wise. It also makes sense to keep a pulse on the change of the Hispanic consumer. The one constant in life is change, and this market will continue to change.

Coño, siguen jodiendo con lo de la television en ingles... No se habia muerto ese argumento cuando salio el primer libro de Nielsen? ese es un argumento elitesco que sigue aquejando al mercado latino, lo triste es que es impulsado dentro de nuestra industria, escrito por un fulano de uno de los conglomerados corporativos con el token Hispanic division, y que tienen mucha aceptacion entre los "retro acculturated" Hispanics. Y los que consiguieron un puesto en marketing por ser latino y se voltean porque en su interior son de cultura angjosajona y no se identifican ni estan en contacto con el consumidor latino. Que las estadÃsticas? Preguntele al Sr. Steve Jobs de que sirven las estadÃsticas y estudios de mercado. Y por si acaso, en el blog arriba mencionado y en el cual se cita al Simmons, lo que puedo decir, es que la muestra del Simmons esta sesgado a un Hispano US dominant, y en algunas medidas no es representative del mercado Hispano en general. Lo pueden comprobar los que tienen acceso al estudio.

Since this blog posting was inspired by a friendly exchange between me and Gene, I wanted to chime in with a few of the original points I made. For those of you who don't know me, my name is David Chitel, Chairman and Founder of the New Generation Latino Consortium which formed back in 2003 to enhance the profile of New Generation Latinos in the media, marketing and entertainment worlds. I've worked in the U.S. Hispanic market for 17 years both on the ad agency side and later as an entrepreneur. - The U.S. Hispanic market has never represented more of an opportunity for media outlets, ad agencies or the advertisers than right now. The Spanish-language ad market is going to continue to grow. Punto. However, in order to capture the maximum growth potential and achieve our "fair share," we need to look beyond the current market parameters that we ourselves have set. Quite successfully I might add. - $6B spent on Hispanic advertising is a lot of money, but it only represents around 3% of total U.S. ad expenditures. The ONLY way we'll get anywhere close to our fair share is if we as an industry embrace the entire audience, not just a segment of it. - The fastest growing and largest sector of the U.S. Hispanic pie consists of New Generation Latinos. Given the length of time Latinos have lived here in the U.S., this could now certainly also include acculturated foreign-borns. It's a fact that is not going to reverse and its time we embrace it and move forward. Nothing left to debate here, although the NGL numbers will be staggering when the 2010 Census numbers are revealed to be sure. - If we get budgets earmarked for targeting ALL Hispanics (not just those solely defined by language), my feeling is that the General Market dollars would quickly match or likely exceed the $6B being spent on Spanish-dominants in short order. General market media by nature is more expensive and comprised of a disproportionate amount of ad dollars that are not properly allocated towards New Generation Latinos. We need to go get these dollars. - In order to begin tapping into these NEW U.S. Hispanic dollars, we in our industry need to start pushing hard for the following: a.) Better TV measurement tools (for starters) b.) Media buying based on cultural skews c.) Inserting culturally-relevant ads into General Market media rotation d.) Strategizing with clients about culturally relevant brand positioning and skews e.) Visibility at all major general market events and within key organizations f.) More digital dollars allocated towards the 25MM U.S. Hispanics online and growing g.) More dollars allocated towards the variety of NGL media vehicles that exist today h.) Internal seats at the table within Fortune 500's as brand managers and higher up Who better to create an agenda to get these things done than those who have worked so hard to build our industry into what it is today? If we don't, our share of the proverbial "pie" will continue to be well below our percentage of the total U.S. population. There is no doubt or fear that Spanish language advertising will do anything but continue to grow. It's the larger New Generation Latino majority that will get us into the double digit percentile if we fully embrace it. Ponder this. What if rather than another Anglo family selling breakfast cereal, it was the Garcia family and abuelita sitting at the table? The spot can run on General Market media in English and in Spanish on Spanish-language media. Think how efficient that would be and how LITTLE CLUTTER there is on General Market TV for a spot such as this. Imagine if you're a Hispanic family who sees the spot on American Idol in English and then later during a novela episode in Spanish? All I'm saying is that there's room for a more diverse mix of creative, media and marketing tactics to reach U.S. Hispanics. I'll leave you all with this thought. The ones advertisers should be worried about "alienating" on general market media are not the Anglos, but rather the Hispanics who consume a TON of it yet do not see themselves well represented time and time again. Ya! The NGLC will continue to put forth this agenda, and reach out to those in our industry to join the discussion. Feel free to visit http://www.NGLC.biz to see what we've been up to and receive updates about what's coming next.

In 2006 the Mundial Group launched an English language version of Futbol Mundial - our industry leading sports title. We syndicated that version via the USA Today SW - and bottomline - the response from English dominant Hispanics was overwhelming. What was not so impressive was the reaction from our industry - who viewed the product thru broken lenses. I suggest we adjust the optic and as previously mentioned - reach our audience thru the relevance of the subject matter - period. In the case of sports - and soccer in particular - we need to speak to this audience about futbol/soccer in Spanish and in English. Our industry can and should lead the charge - focus on relevant subject matter and view language from a more tactical perspective - and start expanding into English within areas that clearly resonate with our marketplace and it's lifestyle and proven interests.

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