latino lingo

All things related to effective Hispanic marketing, Hispanic advertising and Hispanic public relations.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Digital divide

With the pending conversion from analog to all digital broadcasting as of February 18, 2009, Nielsen reports that Hispanics are the most unprepared. Specifically, Hispanics are nearly twice as likely as whites to be left without television service following the nationwide transition to digital broadcasting next year. Hispanics also have a higher percentage of having more than one unready set.

Percentage of Households Completely or Partially Unready for Digital Conversion

Completely Unready (%)
White - 8.8%
Black - 12.4%
Asian - 11.7%
Hispanic - 17.3%

One or More Unready Sets (%)
White - 15.2
Black - 19.5 %
Asian - 18.8%
Hispanic - 26.2 %

The government has an info site that is available in Spanish, but there is little info in terms of how the word will get out to the Hispanic market.

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Muy bien!

Lopez Negrete Communications -- the second largest independent Hispanic marketing agency -- announced they have established "The Lopez Negrete Hispanic Marketing Education Fund," an annual scholarship foundation to benefit students interested specifically in Hispanic marketing or advertising.

According to the press release, The Lopez Negrete Hispanic Marketing Education Fund will award annual scholarships to select recipients with strong potential for success in advertising, marketing, communications, radio/television, media studies, marketing research or other related fields. The scholarships are currently available at four universities: University of Houston, St. Thomas University, Emerson College and Florida State University.

The fund was established in collaboration with the Advertising Education Foundation of Houston (AEFH), the charitable foundation of the American Advertising Federation - Houston (AAF-Houston).

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Hispanic health campaign launched

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and The Advertising Council have launched a Spanish-language national public service campaign designed to encourage Hispanics to become more involved in their health care.

The campaign consists of two TV spots, developed pro-bono by Casanova Pendrill , and a website. According to the release, the focus of the campaign was developed from insights gained in the Ad Council’s focus group research, which found that most Hispanic adults do not visit their doctor regularly and only go when they experience symptoms of illness.urges

I viewed the TV spots online and they are good. They touch an emotional chord as well as one on family, and they are mixed in with a little humor. The website is also a good resource. A few odd Spanglish phrases like "Nuestro Test" rather than using a Spanish word for test. But, again, a good resource.

My only feedback is that I would have created a custom URL or something much easier to remember at the end of the TV spot than I do understand why they'd list the URL for the government site, but people are less likely to recall that at the end of a TV spot than something like, say "" or "" What's more important for the TV spot is that it drives people to visit the site than it is to remember the acronym AHRQ or what it stands for.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Ford's odd text "promotion"

I went to see the Juanes concert last night at Mohegan Sun Casino. Good show. The second time I saw him and he sounds remarkably good live in concert.

During the show and encore they showed a bunch of footage on the big screens. During one of his songs, the screen showed Colombian mine victims, many were children missing limbs (Juanes' charity is the issue of anti-personnel mines in Colombia. According to the charity website, Colombia is the country most affected).

Near the end of the show, there was a Ford text promotion on the big screens saying something to the effect of "To learn about the new Ford Focus text JUANES" to some number.

Does Ford think we're really that bored (or that drunk, Although I only had two beers, I promise) that we'd want to text Ford during the highlight of a concert without any expected benefit other than learning about their car?

I understand the approach being used, but to me it's fundamentally flawed because the so-called "promotion" was only about Ford and not about me (or any of us). The "what's in it for me?" question wasn't answered. Simply using Juanes' name is not compelling enough, even if I were president of his fan club.

What if instead Ford said it would donate $1 to Juanes' foundation for every text that was sent that night? I know I would have done it. Maybe even twice.

I'll put this under the "good idea, bad promotion" category.

Monday, March 03, 2008

No más "press 2 for español" for Dominos

Domino's Pizza announced they have a dedicated number fully dedicated to their Spanish-speaking customers at 1-888-DOMINOSÒ, according to a posting on I called to number to check it out and it works well. It's a voice prompted rather than pushing an entry. Personally, I'd rather hit a number as my experience with voice prompt hasn't been great. I also wonder if it will pick up the words of every Latin American accent.

Regardless, the effort is a good one. Rather than their usual phone number with a "press 2 for Spanish" option, Domino's has invested in ensuring their Spanish speaking customers' experience is all in the preferred language.

Companies should follow a similar approach on the web. Rather than using, they should have a specific URL for Spanish speakers. And, when possible, it should reflect the way Hispanics refer to the company or organization. For instance, The American Red Cross is in Spanish. One of our clients is Stamford Hospital. Latinos call them Hospital De Stamford. Thus, the Spanish-language URL is rather than a /espanol option.

Subtle change, but one that will be certainly picked up, and appreciated, by your customers.

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