Monday, March 16, 2009

Market to the Max - RECAP

Hello, and welcome to a new week.

I've been remiss in posting on Seattle Direct Marketing Association's Market to the Max, and our High Touch, High Value Hispanic Marketing panel last week. It was a neat event, and the panel went really well--the panelists and I offered diverse perspectives that all added up to valuable knowledge on embracing Hispanics versus the "spray and pray" approach (AKA throwing marketing against a wall and hoping it sticks).

Here are some highlights:

Ty Cordova, active in the local Latino community through his work at State Farm Insurance as well as serving on the Washington State Commission on Hispanic Affairs and being president of the Pierce County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, as well as other organizations, really emphasized the importance of community relations. He compared it to advertising and PR, and showed how, by getting out into the community and participating in relevant events with more than a table, companies will become trusted partners. Ty added that by emphasizing staff and supplier diversity, word of mouth will help the community see that you're walking the talk.

President and COO Eric Harber of HipCricket offered lots of great information about Hispanics as mobile marketing consumers, including some of the successes they've seen with Hispanic campaigns nationwide. HipCricket offers a mobile marketing platform which combines traditional media with wireless devices, resulting in engaging, interactive and measurable marketing. They are currently partnering with local outlets KUNS (Univision) and Busto Media radio.

These statistics come from HipCricket:
  • 87% of Hispanic households have multiple mobile phones and use them more than any other form of personal or handheld technologies on the market today
  • More than half regularly use text messaging
  • Text messaging has increased 59%YOY among Hispanics
  • 32% are interested to highly interested in receiving mobile offers/ads
  • Responding to mobile marketing text messages is up 74% vs. last year
Amazing stuff!

Participating from Hemispheres, a local research consultancy offering both quantitative and qualitative expertse, Paula Rosecky was full of great information about how to approach research methodologies when looking to reach the Hispanic community. Paula emphasized the need to understand cultural differences and not proceed blindly or make assumptions.

"Because in most organizations, people don’t typically know much about Hispanic audiences, it requires rolling up your sleeves and acting as an educator. The work is highly rewarding in that you learn as you go and you become a teacher in the process."

And last but certainly not least, Jacqui Stewart from Ascentium was able to provide the audience a better understanding of how to know whether to target Latino consumers in English or Spanish.

Jacqui explained (and I agree) that best practices show that bilingual materials are almost always preferred, especially in the case of direct marketing where you're not face-to-face with the consumer. Latinos like to see that with either language, they're getting the same "deal." Besides, even if your target consumer is Spanish-dominant, they likely have someone in their household who is English-dominant. It's ideal to offer both languages in one piece for this consumer.

All in all it was a terrific learning opportunity for our audience--who admitted they hadn't yet tackled marketing to this community but were certainly interested in learning how.


  1. What an interesting and useful post. Any of the topics mentioned would be worthy of further exploration.

  2. Thanks for checking out my blog and for posting your comment, Nick. You are invited anytime.

    I see you have created quite a niche for yourself! Your blog, Islamic Branding in the Age of Engagement ( is quite an engaging read!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.