How to Reach a Latino Audience w/ Digital Marketing

Tips to reach a Latino audience

An incredible 85% of Hispanic adults agreed that their culture was incredibly important to them in

a survey… implying that you can reach a Latino audience by making your digital marketing efforts resonate with their community and culture.

It was also inferred that 75% of Latino consumers see you more favorably and will buy from you if you try to include elements of their Hispanic culture in your advertising.

Another study revealed that an incredible 40% of Hispanic consumers cut ties with businesses that didn’t represent their Hispanic identity in advertising despite the brand’s intention to reach a Latino audience.

Thankfully, it’s much easier to reach Latinos using digital marketing because these same Latino audiences / consumers are avid online shoppers who use search engines and other apps to look up product information and make buying decisions.

This post will discuss how I reach Latino audience with a solid digital marketing plan.

10 Surefire Ways to Reach a Latino Audience

1. Implement a Multilingual Strategy

A lot of marketers get tripped up here.

There’s so much confusion among digital marketers about picking a language when trying to reach a Latino audience.

That said, here are strategies to help you create the maximum impact based on your buyer persona.

⮚ Spanish Strategy

A Spanish-only strategy is a must if your audience is highly unacculturated Spanish speaking.

Have I mentioned that I hate that term?

It’s used to describe someone that speaks their “mother tongue” at home, prefer to consume content in the same, and have strong ties with their home country, culture, and traditions.

A Spanish-only strategy is really the only way to go if this is your audience.

It could involve various initiatives, from creating a Spanish-optimized version of your website to starting a Spanish campaign with Hispanic influencers to building full-scale marketing campaigns targeting Spanish speaking Latino audiences.

It’s been heavily researched and proven that most Spanish-speaking consumers appreciate and show loyalty to brands that advertise in their native language so obviously, a Spanish-only strategy that engages prospects throughout the customer journey will result in long-lasting brand loyalty.

⮚ English Strategy

Some Hispanic consumers in the US prefer English when consuming content or searching for a product or service online, even though they’re Spanish-dominant speakers.

If they land on your website with English content, they won’t generally look for an option to translate the content to Spanish… though typically not the case if they land on your Spanish content.

That said, you still need to keep the cultural aspects of the Hispanic community in mind when targeting this audience.

The easiest way to know if what your audience prefers is to look at your analytics and follow what your visitors are doing when they land on your Spanish content.

Are they clicking over to English?

I’ve worked on sites that are traditionally Spanish-only and over time the audience shifts, and the strategy needs to become English Strategy or even Bilingual Strategy.

⮚ Bilingual Strategy

Many Latino consumers use both English and Spanish when consuming online marketing content.

The best way to target this audience is by using English as the primary language and integrating popular Spanish phrases, idioms, quotes, and terms into your content (to quote Biggie again, “Strictly for live men, not for freshmen”).

If you have any doubts, even the tiniest of doubts, hire experienced Hispanic talent and / or bilingual marketing experts.

They’ll be invaluable in mixing appropriate cultural references in a thoughtful way that resonates with your Latino audience and motivates them to want to buy from you.

Regardless of the strategy, you want your digital marketing efforts to make prospects feel seen and identified with your message to increase chances of them interacting with your brand through the various channels and strategies you use for your campaigns.

2. Produce Targeted Advertising Content

You need to be looking at the increasing consumption of social media content among Latinos as a source to drive your targeting decisions.

For example, Facebook Insights is a valuable tool that provides a clear overview of your target audience, including details like:

  • Demographics
  • Education level
  • Job title
  • Languages spoken
  • Job title
  • Interests
  • Preferred technology and devices
  • Online behavior
  • Buying patterns

With this information, you can identify Hispanic market segments that align with your marketing objectives.

Let’s say you a particular campaign requires you to narrow your target audience to 25- to 35-year-old, single, bilingual Latino women who travel frequently.

Keep in mind that different groups of people will have different language preferences (i.e., maybe only Spanish, maybe only English, or maybe both) and different interests.

How closely they’re tied to the Hispanic culture and heritage will also vary.

Once you understand your audience, the opportunities to increase reach and produce targeted content that resonates with them is limitless.

Tips to Reach a Latino Audience on Facebook and Instagram:

  • Use Spanish or Spanglish (English with Spanish phrases) when reaching out to prospects through direct messaging
  • Harness the functions of Hyperlapse on Instagram to create engaging content
  • Sort of a grey area but its effective so I’m including it… build a brand voice with unique, culturally relevant hashtags popular among your target audience (just make sure it matches your brand’s tone; remember, no one wants to hear grandma talk like a teenager)
  • Join in conversations with popular tags
  • Find similar profiles targeting Hispanics and test out the content theirfollowers engage with the most
  • Create branded content to maximize your reach

3. Steer Clear of Stereotyping & Generalizations

Don’t assume all Hispanics are the same and avoid using dumb clichés when you’re trying to reach a Latino audience.

Using clichés about Hispanic traditions and culture will cost your business in the long run.

Did you know 50% of Latinos aged between 13 and 49 didn’t hesitate to quit a brand that offended them or disrespected their values.

Also remember that Latino consumers in your target area will have unique expectations, interests, and motivating factors that purchase them so take a nuanced approach instead of hoping for generalizations to “stick”.

Invest time and effort into getting to know your audience and identifying ways to connect with them in an authentic and effective manner.

Additionally, tailor your marketing campaign’s message to the cultural values and views of your target audience.

Reusing (or just translating English content into Spanish) won’t cut it.

By considering cultural insights, you can create strategies that best motivate Hispanic audiences to choose you and buy your products and services.

I hate to be pessimistic but unfortunately, all this steering clear of stereotypes and generalizations isn’t as straightforward as it sounds… especially now where an innocent misstep taken out of context can lead to being cancelled in real-time.

Nothing to cry and / or protest about. It’s just what it is.

In my experience, using Hispanic talent with lots of professional experience from various countries has been key to avoiding hiccups and missteps.

4. Create Digital Videos for Online Streaming Fans

There’s a higher percentage of US Latinos using YouTube (78%) than any other group in the US.

That’s a crazy stat considering no one really talks about YouTube as a marketing strategy for reaching a Latino audience.

It doesn’t only serve as a source of entertainment for the community, but it also influences their buying decisions.

A study on why Hispanics use YouTube revealed that 75% of respondents watched videos to learn more about a particular product or service.

Bells should be going off in your head right now because they are literally telling you that if you’re not on YouTube in some significant way, you won’t even have a chance against a competitive brand that is on YouTube (either with organic content or ads).

Of Hispanic consumers whose purchasing behavior was influenced by these videos:

  • 90% that bought something in the food and beverage category watched cooking videos with reviews or ads showing someone consuming a specific product or brand on YouTube before making a purchase
  • 92% who purchased personal care items believed that YouTube was the best place to find actual product-related videos from the general public before making a purchase
  • 92% of automotive buyers reported that they lovedseeing unbiased information about a product or brand on YouTube before making a purchase

The Hispanic community’s preference for videos extends to online streaming channels like Netflix (79% of users) and Hulu (73% of users).

I added these numbers because they’re significant in making a case for why big brand and small business marketers need to reach Hispanic audiences sooner than later.

Wondering why?

Online streaming platforms offer more diverse content than cable TV subscriptions.

Research shows that 1/3 of cable TV content lacks equal representation of diverse populations (Hispanic women in particular face this issue the most across content categories and TV genres).

42% of Latinos reported in a survey that they spend at least 6 hours a week (comparatively speaking, that’s a big number) watching online videos.

Let this be your reminder to keep the Hispanic culture, history, and traditions in mind when creating video content and basically any type of content calendar.

Showcase colorful stories using Hispanic imagery that resonates with the emotions of your Latino audience.

5. Use Digital Audio to Create Cultural Connections

Music is a significant driver of community interaction and cultural connections among Latino audiences – and the high digital audio usage rates among US Hispanics reflect the same.

85% of Latinos listen to audio content online, with 90% streaming radio or music on digital audio platforms.

It was also reported that 4 in 10 people spend more than 5 hours a week listening to music online, providing an excellent platform for brands that want to reach a Latino audience and establish meaningful connections with the community in arguably the most culturally relevant context.

Theresa also a highly undervalued channel you can tap into with very minimal competition. Podcasts.

Tap into podcasts to provide the Hispanic community with an additional source of information and entertainment.

Did you know 18% of Latino respondents confirmed that they spent more time listening to podcasts since the COVID-19 pandemic.

In this group, 16% are daily listeners (9% more than the general population).

I expect this number to grow significantly as radio ad dollars get consolidated into ad networks, which are exceedingly adding more and more podcasts to their portfolios, and are made available through programmatic advertising.

Why is it important that podcasts are getting rolled up into ad networks?

Because the more profitable podcasts become, the more they’re able to invest in themselves and that translates to better content and more listeners… many of which will be Hispanics.

Regarding podcast genres, Latinos are 61% more likely to gravitate toward music podcasts than the total population (again, I see that changing quickly once talk podcasts become “better”).

Businesses in health and fitness, science, or crime industries will also have an edge in targeting the Hispanic community through podcasts.

Btw, you’d be surprised how many “undeclared Hispanics” regularly consume popular podcasts like The Joe Rogan Experience and others.

Audio advertising is a relatively unexplored channel with lots of opportunities that won’t be around for long, so my advice is to get in NOW.

6. Collaborate w/ Hispanic Influencers

In general markets, social media influencers and content creators are a vital source for brand marketers to reach niche audiences – the Latino market is no exception.

The big names in the Hispanic space (i.e., millions of followers) include Lele Pons, Salice Rose, Bethany Mota, and LeJuan James.

Here’s the thing, you don’t need to collaborate just with the bigger names.

You can also look for other Hispanic influencers who may not be as well-known but share the same niche audience as you (they’ll be more affordable too).

7. Feature Hispanics in Your Ads

One of the best (but not-so-obvious) ways to incorporate the Hispanic culture into your advertising is by using real Latinos instead of actors in your campaigns.

If the ad is for millennials, make sure the actor belongs to the same age group – letting a generation talk to itself is critical.

8. Send Personalized Emails Using A/B Testing

Some brands make the mistake of presenting Spanish and English content in the same email when trying to reach a Latino audience.

This produces poor results because:

  • The Spanish message will likely be longer which throws your email design off
  • Immediately, recipients will feel overwhelmed with the total length of the email which increases the chances of your email being deleted
  • Speaking by the numbers, these emails are underperformers which means they don’t get good results from either group

If there’s one thing to know about email marketing, it’s that personalization is key (especially when sending emails to Latino consumers, based on email reporting statistics).

I use an email marketing platform that can handle complex digital marketing requirements so I can automate tasks.

This saves me time and effort and ensures each prospect receives emails in their language of choice.

One tactic that works wonders for Hispanic email marketing is A/B testing.

It helps you figure out the type of emails that get the highest open and click-through rates.

Areas to focus on include:

  • Subject lines
  • Language (English or Spanish)
  • Pre-headers
  • Body content
  • Day and time of sending the email (remember different geos have different time zones so you’ll want to set up your mailings based on local times)

9. Guarantee Online Privacy at All Cost

The Hispanic community is generally more concerned about online privacy because trust is central to cultural acceptance.

Also, people who recently migrated might also worry about the possible consequences of giving out too much information online.

It’s not always obvious, but this is why you’ll find that many Latino consumers are reluctant to provide any personal information (regardless of the value or reward you promise in return).

Essentially, deals that look like no-brainers or too good to pass up to you, come across as too good to be true to a fairly big chunk of the Latino audience.

The upside is that while Hispanic markets value a great deal as much as anyone else, they’re also much more open to accepting a fair deal and willing to pay accordingly.

Hispanic focused or not, as a brand you need to have stringent security measures in place and assure personal information is protected at all costs.

You also need to go the extra mile to immediately address any privacy concerns highlighted by prospects otherwise it’ll be challenging to build trust with.

10. Devise a Year-Round Action Plan

Latino consumers will see through a shallow attempt to portray your brand as “inclusive” when really, you’re only trying to reach a Latino audience for monetary gain.

Don’t be like most businesses that create marketing campaigns for special occasions like Hispanic Heritage Month but then don’t follow through the rest of the year.

This is a big advantage for smaller brands that don’t need to be everything to everyone but also something many big brands and figured out how to do without alienating other audiences.

You can maximize the impact of your digital marketing if you carry out year-round campaigns for Latino audiences which shows them that you genuinely care about their needs and preferences and are committed to serving them beyond Hispanic Heritage Month.

This goes a long way in building long-term connections with the Latinx community, and it won’t be long before you develop a loyal customer base of Hispanics that go out of their way to engage and promote your brand through website comments, social network sharing, and real life in person conversations.

Once you’ve got the attention and trust of this community, you can encourage registration with your site to get further engagement through newsletters and preferred service offerings.

Develop Strategic Digital Marketing Campaigns to Reach a Latino Audience

With the Hispanic population growing exponentially every single year, having a culturally relevant advertising strategy to target a Latino audience is a definite must for your brand.

That said, please don’t do it just to expand your customer base.

Instead, focus on what the Hispanic community needs and expects from brands like yours (or in general) and how you can better serve them with thoughtful messaging and ultimately, better products and services.

Most brands dedicate a relatively tiny sliver of their marketing budgets to targeting Latino audiences.

Small businesses rarely invest at all in marketing to Hispanics (excluding hyperlocal businesses in predominantly Latinx communities).

All this means that there are massive growth opportunities for brands in every category to reach out and connect with the Hispanic market.

I hope this all helps and all your campaigns exceed their goals.

Remember, paid ads work and if you have any questions about how to reach Latino audiences, contact me.


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