Overview:  Aftermarket Business World interviews Hollywood Branded’s CEO Stacy Jones on how entertainment can best be utilized to target and attract Hispanic consumers. Aftermarket Business World is the leading source of information for aftermarket auto parts wholesalers and retailers looking for in-depth market trends, analysis and research on marketing.

Jones talks sports, entertainment endorsements and attracting Hispanic consumers

AfterMarket Business World

By: James E. Guyette | May 25th, 2012

April’s launch of the new Hispanic Consumer Marketing Division of Hollywood Branded, Inc. brings to light the star power that Latinos admire – a trend that can boost sales when tied to a suitable endorsement or product placement.

“Working with brands or their agencies, we craft entertainment marketing programs utilizing today’s most popular entertainment properties and celebrities,” says Stacy Jones the
agency’s president.

“Our campaigns speak directly to the Hispanic market through English and/or Spanish-language programming options, leveraging brand awareness and specific product messaging in a medium statistically proven to resound with Hispanics: Entertainment.”

Popul
ar Hispanic celebrities targeted for endorsements include William Levy, Eugenio Derbez, Javier Bardem, Demian Bichir, Eva Longoria, Mario Lopez, Wilmer Valderrama, Jennifer Esposito, Sofia Vergara, Naya Rivera, Cameron Díaz, Jaime Camil and Thalia.

“The decision to extend our reach and create a distinctive services strategy for major corporate clientele targeting the Hispanic market was a natural one, and one which was requested by our clients as they pursue new tactics to influence and target the fastest growing consumer segment in the U.S.,” says Jones who recently answered a series of questions posed by Aftermarket Business World:

If a business owner is considering creating a marketing plan directed at Hispanics, what factors should be researched before you begin targeting this audience?

For entertainment marketing, we take in consideration what market the business owner is targeting, and explore what events and sports are specific to the local area. We do this for both national/global brands as well as regional – as there are core markets such as Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, New York and Miami that typically offer numerous Hispanic focused events that bring your targeted consumer into easy reach.

Aside from looking at census figures for your particular marketing sphere, how else can you determine the extent of a Hispanic prospective-customer base?

What events and activities are taking place in your marketing sphere that are a focal point for the Hispanic consumer? Being able to step in and wrap a campaign around an activity that is already bringing forward the desired demographic is typically much more strategized than blindly aiming widely.

What factors should be considered in regard to adequately reaching differing Hispanic groups? (Such as, Cubans may have different trends than Mexicans, etc.)

For entertainment, there are crossovers. It just depends on the vehicle. Shakira or Jennifer Lopez are global name brands that are going to reach all Hispanics regardless of country of origin.

Is it better for a small business to invest in a Hispanic-oriented marketing firm, or is this a project that can usually be handled in-house or through your existing public relations representative?

If you have an individual in house who is connected within the entertainment community, and not having to learn the process and build the relationships along the way, then handling it yourself is always an option. If you want a turnkey program where the relationships and opportunities are already known, or at least easily sourced, the overall monies spent in training the in-house employee or PR representative, who may be charging you by hour, can be better directed and utilized.

If retaining a marketing firm is the way to go, what factors should be considered during the selection process?

Make sure the firm knows their stuff, ask for client recommendations and look at case studies.

And really one of the most important – make sure you truly know what the result is that you are seeking, and make sure they are creating a roadmap plan that has key check points listed for you to be provided update reports monthly if not weekly or bi weekly.

So many clients go in to a project not knowing what end result it is that they are seeking. No agency can satisfy you unless you truly know what you want as a result.

Have your agency present new ideas bi weekly or monthly or more often – the more off the wall the better, and take the time to see if there is anything in the idea that has a possibility. Often-times the most hare-brained brainstorming sessions create a single nugget that can lead a campaign in an entirely new direction.

Be open to changing directions. In my opinion it is better to make a decision and start moving than staying stagnant weighing your decisions. You can always change directions. I see all-too-often agencies and their clients pondering what direction should be taken while time clicks on and absolutely no result is made as no one has authorized a step in any direction. A stagnant agency is of no benefit to the client.

If hiring a Spanish-speaking employee is a must for embarking upon a marketing plan, how can you ensure that the candidate has an acceptable level of language knowledge?

Hire a native of the language! And if you are not fluent in Spanish, then have someone who is double check their work on occasion to provide you with the confidence that you have the best representative for your company. It’s easy to fix the glitches that might occur with English – harder to fix the glitches that might occur if you hire someone schooled and not raised on the language; and you want to ensure your market perception is safeguarded and not laughed at.

Could you offer some tips on how to best reach a Hispanic customer base through the media?

For the specialty within which we work – entertainment marketing – we utilize Spanish-language TV, radio and print campaigns often to leverage our client’s partnerships. However, we have a rare situation where entertainment is truly global, as long as the messaging and the cast resonates with the Hispanic demographic – and there is a lot of crossover. In entertainment, prime time network TV shows have Latino/Latina characters that are embraced by Hispanics overall.

What are some other steps that a business owner can take to reach out to the Hispanic community?

You can engage with various celebrities – even individuals who are perceived in your community to have a celebrity status – to create assets usable through social media and PR– photos of the individual with your brand, testimonials, social media giveaways through the individual’s own sites.

If you have a national retail store – or even regional – you could create a program where you sponsor screenings of films that are geared to your consumer, or provide pre-paid movie tickets as an incentive to purchase your product. Or even create a music download program where consumer obtain free downloads with purchase.

Are there any Hispanic cultural or demographic trends that stand out as being critical to know when reaching out to a Hispanic automotive customer?

Younger Hispanic males tend to be highly into action movies, music (and music videos) and video games – something which automotive brands and OEMs should take more advantage of.

For more information, visit hollywoodbranded.com.

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