Much more than translators: three Miami agency leaders share their insights into what the next phase of Hispanic marketing will look like.

Author:Jordan, Judi
Position:Cover story
 
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It's not enough to be a visionary in the Hispanic media game. Tenacity, flexibility and endurance are also essential to growth and survival.

The last decade has seen Corporate America go through its own "Great Enlightening" with the Latino consumer.

Looking at the number of boutique Hispanic-PR agencies, it can be argued that a corner has been turned. Hispanic media buys are the norm, not the exception, and agencies are blossoming.

Online publications, bloggers and web video content have measurable clout and provide the media buyers with the ROI clients demand.

Now, many corporations devote specific monies just to reach the Latino consumer. Hispanic agencies are a necessary voice at the planning table.

Catering to a broad demographic--ranging from traditional to progressive, bilingual tech-savvy, early adopters to first generation Spanish-preferred consumers--marketers tasked with reaching the Latino consumer are enjoying the job security that comes with this ever-diversifying demographic.

What that means for marketers is the freedom and the need to be more creative as more Latinos embrace their buying power.

Marketing leaders Lisette Hoyo, President of accentmarketing, Joe Zubizaretta (known as Zubi) owner of Zubi Advertising, and Mike Valdes-Fauli, President of the JeffreyGroup, have been deeply invested in crafting the Hispanic message for decades, retaining their enthusiasm and optimism as their long-held bets pay off.

This golden moment of opportunity isn't a face-off between agencies. With a huge and diverse Latino population to serve, individuality and specialization are the inducements for corporate clients to seek out their perfect marketing partner.

There are many ways to be Latino, and corporations are beginning to appreciate the differences, not as complications but as opportunities.

The one-flavor-pleases-all-Latinos logic initially misperceived by general market advertisers, has been deemed flawed and overturned by well-conceived campaigns that hit their marks.

As America slowly ascertains the cultural nuances between Puerto Rican, Dominican, Mexican, Cuban (and the numerous other Hispanic nationalities and their traditions), the complexity of the task, and the opportunity it offers will emerge.

Successful Latino marketing requires an international recipe book for a multi-faceted and deep demographic. The marketing menu is a work in progress, constantly being refined to tempt different Latino palates.

What's stimulating for marketers and advertisers alike is the gratifying data that has surfaced as Latino consumers write their own ticket for what flies and flops at the cash register. Response to the Hispanic-targeted campaigns resonates well beyond the till. This information flows to the government and beyond.

It's fair to say that based on the growing prevalence of Hispanic-targeted campaigns in politics, general market advertisers were further incentivized to take the Latino consumer seriously. This raises the question of economic power as it relates to political heft.

So what's good for Latinos to buy and support? Media imagery is a guide that can drive consumer choices to companies that encourage the Latino-American dream and enhance Latino businesses.

This is where Hoyo, Zubi and Valdes-Fauli lead.

Servicing clients as varied as the U.S. Navy, Chase or Johnnie Walker, these three marketing experts echo the potential trillion-dollar market created by Hispanic consumers. With that kind of clout, Latinos can create a demand for quality products of the future, and the jobs that craft them.

Here, the brains behind some of America's most creative Hispanic ad campaigns discuss their work and the evolution of the market.

LATINO LEADERS: How do you view your work and how you present yourself? What sets you apart?

LISETTE HOYO: As a leader, I see a critical part of my work as setting the tone and encouraging our agency culture, which is built around the pillars of collaboration, creativity, which we encourage across all agency disciplines, being in touch with the communities we serve, flexibility and, of course, fun.

Being one of three Latinas at the helm of...

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