Thursday, September 17, 2009

Hispanic Cable 2010: Marketers Explore Ways to Drive Dollars to Booming Demo

The 2010 Census is expected to indicate that the U.S. Hispanic population is continuing to grow at a tremendous rate. This has marketing strategists voraciously exploring revenue opportunities targeting Hispanics in the cable marketplace. But unless adequate data is available to track growing viewership, it may be difficult for Hispanic cable to attract big ad dollars, according to a number of Hispanic marketing strategists speaking at a Hispanic cable market conference sponsored by B&C and the Cable Advertising Bureau Sept. 15 in New York.

“Learning from Latinos is really what 2010 should really be about,” said Walton/Isaacson Chief Hispanic Marketing Strategist Rochelle Newman Carrasco. She said Hispanics have done a good job combining their cultural identity with the positive aspect of acculturation. She also tried to debunk the assertion that Hispanic cable is in its infancy, saying “It’s in an evolutionary stage.”

Still, marketing executives believe the market has not yet realized much of its potential programming opportunities. “Hispanic cable still remains very general interest [programming],” said Rick Marroquin, managing director of Mediabrands. “There’s no Food Network, there’s no Logo, there’s no Oxygen.” Marroquin said that when the Census data is released (in 2011), consumers might begin to see more specificity in Hispanic cable.

But the panelists admitted it would be difficult for ad dollars to pick up if metrics can’t properly illustrate how the country’s changing demographics are leading to increased spending by Hispanic cable viewers.

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