As our Hispanic market gains visibility and strategic importance clients are stepping up their game, becoming smarter and interested in what makes our consumers tick. But unfortunately there is still plenty of closed-mindedness to go around. Here’s a fun look at some common sayings or situations that might hint that your potential or existing client, how do I put this, might not be all that into your market. If you smell these signals it might be better to focus your energy on getting clients that want to get it. If not you run the risk of becoming the whining ethnic agency. And we surely don’t want that, right?
Top 10 Signs Your Client Might Not Be Hispanic-Ready (loosely based on reality)
1. They timidly propose that they start the Hispanic initiative really small this year given budget constraints, perhaps with Tacos and Corona beers at their offices to celebrate Cinco de Mayo.
2. When you are not sure if the budget they give you for the first year is in U.S. dollars or Mexican pesos.
3. When the client secretary is assigned as your agency’s direct contact, or worse yet, when the contact becomes the secretary at their general market agency. No, not a good sign at all.
4. If they consistently refer to your account team as Juan and Maria.
5. When the hard-working Latina cleaning ladies on the client side are asked to approve creative.
6. When they say: “We are not ready yet, but when we do something we want to make sure we do it right,” wink, wink.
7. If you find yourself creatively coming up with the fifth version of a presentation on the Hispanic opportunity showing that 80% of their market is Latino, and they still don’t get it.
8. When they honestly ask you if their general market television spot featuring Sally and Ted, their red-headed boy named Jimmy and their well-behaved dog named Spot in front of their lake house in upstate rural Michigan would work if dubbed. And when you answer no, they say “really?”
9. When they don’t seem to grasp that in the Hispanic market television and radio budgets are not the same thing, and that simply put, budget trends apply both to mainstream and U.S. Hispanic market.
10. When their excuse for not doing something in the market is because they don’t know how to grapple with all the languages and accents in the Hispanic community. “We just don’t want to offend anyone.” Again, all variations of “when we do it, we want to do it right.”
So you’ve been warned, give it a couple of times to convert these types of clients, but if not move on to the many more that get it. I’m sure you’ve experienced a couple of others scenarios that you might want to share. So write up. Feel free to embellish creatively for entertainment and inspirational purposes.
By Roberto Ramos, President & CEO, The Vox Collective