“Un llamado de conciencia” to US Hispanic Ad Agencies Heads.

    In our Industry, we have over the years been confronted with new market realities, changing business models and client expectations.

Now we are confronted with a diminishing role for US Hispanic focused independent ad agencies  and multinationals alike, with losses to mainstream agencies that show “some” type of US Hispanic Market capabilities.  The losses are HUGE in dollars, credibility, sustainability and detrimental to our professionals.  This has been going on for a long time now with no organized and/or strategic efforts to thwart the systematic “de-evolution” of our Industry.

Where are the War Parties and “los gritos de guerra?

It is the American way! Business is War.

I remember that about 3 years ago, you heard that a well-known female head of an ad agency in her come back into the business, recognizing the trends occurring in the Hispanic Industry took a trip to Washington DC along with a former colleague, an independent PR agency business owner, and met with some key political figures such as Nydia Velazquez and other members of the Hispanic Caucus and the leadership of several Community organizations such as HACER and USHCC in order to discuss the issues facing the Hispanic Advertising and Media business and inform them of the challenges facing Hispanic agencies. Not just Hispanic-owned agencies but Hispanic agencies in general.

These two women realized that there was a lack of understanding by these community influencers of the dynamics of our business.

Upon her return, she reached out to several key Hispanic agency leaders to seek their support looking to have a follow up meeting in DC, where “it takes a village” to do things.  She knocked on several doors but to her disappointment, there was not strong support for the idea.

I wonder if some the leaders she contacted then have actually been affected by losses to mainstream ad agencies and media.

Now with that said, how important would it have been to have a strategic initiative in placed that had Congressional (political) muscle to help US Hispanic Ad Agencies today?

I know that we have to be advertising and marketing people first, but how can we be in the Hispanic Market and not have a community component when our own communities we targeting are facing health care access problems and immigration reform pressures.  POLITICS is a large part of what we should be doing.  For our community and our businesses.

Maybe Al Sharpton and Jessie Jackson are available to help us do for us what we have not been able to do for ourselves. Or we need Raul Yzaguirre , Henry Cisneros and Eduardo Caballero to lead the charge ( I wrote about this in September of 2008 CLICK HERE ).

I know what I am saying makes people mad at the issue and probably at me, but it has to be said.  Do not kill the messenger.  Nos estan comiendo los dulces por cajas.

This is not only an agency head problem.  Ad Agency professionals look at your own company bosses and ask them what are they doing to ensure the sustainability of our business model.  Your livelihood is on the line.

Ask the professional organizations you are a members of what they are doing to defend the US Hispanic Advertising Industry, like the Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies (AHAA), the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s) and your favorite trade journals.  Maybe the way we judge their coverage, performance and representation of our interest has to change and we need to demand more from them.

The losses are killing our business.

This is not a Jerry McGuire moment of mine.

I have a vested interest as a Hispanic owned and operated company in our Industry.  I am in favor of the evolution not the de-evolution of our business.

With Corporate American being so sensitive to community issues, don’t you think they would react if we showed them our muscle?

What do you think?

Gene Bryan – CEO – HispanicAd.com

nom de guerre – Oso del Yunque

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