4 tips for courting the expanding Latino market

Marketing with nuance to any key demographic can be challenging.

Beyond the general advice that most companies take for granted when serving
U.S. Latinos (such as being culturally relevant), there are four key
strategies that can help companies achieve their marketing goals:

  • Shifting to digital and social media channels to reach active Latino
  • Marketing to the variances in Latino geography, from urban areas to
    more rural populations
  • Shifting to advertising and marketing channels that appeal to educated,
    younger Latino populations
  • Marketing to the fast-growth, Latino-owned business market as well as
    household consumers

Let’s take a closer look at each.

Digital and social media

Latinos are more likely than the general market to research products online
before and while they shop. They look for online reviews and compare prices
when shopping for products that range from apparel and food to electronics,
toys and tickets.

This group also likes to share their shopping experiences, writing reviews
through their mobile phones more often than non-Latinos. They consume
mobile online video more than non-Latinos, too.

[RELATED: Ragan Consulting Group can help you find, tell and share your organization’s most compelling stories.]

This group is also more active on social media platforms, constantly
comparing brands and prices, and being vocal about the brands and products
they love (or dislike), it is critical that marketers learn how to target
them effectively.

Urban versus rural

Recently, the fastest growth in the U.S. Latino market has come in parts of
the country that have relatively small numbers of Latinos,
according to Pew Research. Compared with the large Latino populations in South Florida or California,
these groups can be easily overlooked.

Pew statistics show that more than half of U.S. Latinos live in just 15 metro areas. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim topped the list
with 6 million Latinos, most of whom are U.S.-born.

Companies marketing to Latino demographics need a keen balance of messaging
that appeals to both urban populations and more suburban and rural ones,
and which demonstrates their understanding and due diligence on the
geographic diversity of this audience.

A more educated population

Research from Pew also shows that a growing share of U.S. Latinos
have a college education. Nearly 40 percent of Latinos age 25 or older had some college credit in
2015, a 10 percent increase from the start of the millennium. That number
gets even higher among U.S.-born Latinos, as more than 50 percent said they
have gone to college.

Latinos are now the largest minority group on college campuses, with more
than 2 million students ages 18–24 making up 16.5 percent of all college

With this in mind, marketers should examine the media channels and
publications they rely on to reach Latino populations and ensure that
they’re placing advertising and marketing content in media outlets that
appeal to highly educated populations as well as mainstream channels.

Latino-owned businesses

Second-generation Latinos do better than their parents educationally and in
terms of household income,
according to a report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. They
also make gains in terms of occupational status.

The 2012 Census showed that 12 percent of all U.S. companies are
Latino-owned businesses. That’s 3.3 million. If we include companies owned
by two or more U.S. Latinos, along with family-owned businesses, about one
in 10 U.S. Latinos is a business owner.

In addition, the growth rate in the number of Latino businesses has
consistently been two to three times higher than the national average for
the past 15 years, according to a recent study by the Stanford Latino
Entrepreneurship Initiative.

So although many marketers know they ought to be marketing to Latino
households, they might be missing out on the massive opportunity to be
marketing to Latino businesses as well.

A dynamic demographic

The U.S. Latino market is a powerful force in the economy, one that can
represent massive opportunity for companies looking to grow and
authentically serve a diverse audience.

By focusing on a few key strategies for reaching these buyers, marketers
can ensure their organizations are reaching U.S. Latino consumers in the
right channels, at the right time, and with the messaging that resonates

Craig Witt is an executive vice president at
MotionPoint. A version of this post first appeared on


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