Is America Ready for a Multicultural Society?

Multiculturalism and the meaning of living in a multicultural society from the perspective of Maria Isabel Valdés; recognized as an authority on the Hispanic market, and author of 4 books on the topic, (including The Hispanic Market Handbook, one of the first books ever written on the subject in the U.S, and which first edition was published in 1995).
M. Isabel also shares with her audience at the TEDx St. Louis event some interesting projections about the future of the U.S. society, based on the data gathered for the 2010 Census.

Generation Ñ, The “Hottest” and Fastest-Growing Segment of American Consumers

By Ivonne Kinser

During the past 30 years "Generation Ñ" hasn't gone unnoticed by the American society, nor by the American media; however, lately it is getting a lot of buzz in the industry.
The young Hispanic Americans influenced by their heritage, bilingual go-getters, nostalgic about their family roots, prompt to mix languages freely, and who represent over $300 billion in purchasing power, encompass the group referred as "Gen Ñ".

The 70's "Gen Ñ". Same Story, Different Scenario
Although the term was coined only about ten years ago, TV networks started featuring this group in their programming repertory even long before the publication of the 2000 census’ startling results unleashed the so called “Latino Boom” in the U.S.
Who doesn’t remember “Que Pasa, U.S.A?”; America's first bilingual situation comedy aired nationwide in the 70's that explored the trials and tribulations faced by a Cuban family as they struggled to cope with a new country and a new language. The series focused on the identity crisis of the teenage members of the family as they are pulled in one direction by their elders, who wanted to maintain Hispanic values and traditions, and in other directions by the pressures of living in a predominantly Anglo society.  

A Demographic Shift Hard To Ignore
Thirty years later that situation hasn’t changed much for the multigenerational Hispanic families living in the U.S.  Why then is that it was just recently that marketers started turning their heads toward the young Hispanic-American consumers? Well, to me the reasons are pretty obvious and others in the industry might agree. Not only did this group account for all the growth in the U.S. youth population in the last decade, - according to the first estimate of nation' population based on last spring's population count recently released by the Census - but like never before Generation Ñ is challenging the status quo of traditional marketing. This situation is causing sleepless nights of more than a few marketers who are trying to figure out their brand’s way towards the minds and hearts of this highly desirable segment. 

Latinos are the nation's biggest and youngest minority group

Latinos make up about 18% of all youths in the U.S. ages 16 to 25

The rapid growth of the Hispanic youth population is without a doubt one of the most dramatic and important demographic trends affecting the United States, and it is starting to become the focus for growth for many players in the U.S. industry landscape. It is just the impact predicted by the short-term and long-term effects of this group's growth somehow motivating the evolution of the media, as the media outlets develop innovative tools, and marketers reinvent their tactics to engage the tech-savvy, bicultural, bilingual Hispanic youth.

Reaching & Connecting with Gen Ñ
The considerations to craft successful tactics that effectively engage this confident, connected and open to change generation must go way beyond the "language" aspect. Contrary to what has been misunderstood by a few in the industry, this is NOT about bilingual everything, and much less about English everything; in fact, about nine-in-ten Hispanic young immigrants, and eight-in-ten second-generation young Hispanics are fluent in Spanish, so language choice is just one the components of the strategy and should be determined case-by-case based on the communication outlet used, its cultural relevancy, and the attitudes of our audience toward a specific category. 
There is no doubt that traditional massive media (whether the message is in English or in Spanish), is still a key component of most strategies; however, marketers targeting the youngest Hispanics are leveraging multi-market,  multi-media campaigns, not only to directly reach and connect with this audience, but to engage them as evangelists to communicate the message to their families.

The Current Scenario
Gen Ñ is under the microscope of quite a few marketers who see the emormous opportunity of this group. Media outles are not lagging behind either but rather are evolving accordingly and creating bilingual environments and cultural relevant content to appeal to this demographic; and although some in the industry are in the right path, it seems that the deeper we dig into this demographic the more complex and challenging it gets. Just recently, a new report released by the Pew Hispanic Center highlights important findings regarding the differences in technology use between foreign-born and native-born Latino youth. With so many variables within the same group, finding the right strategy to truly connect with this culturally complex audience is still a challenge even for the savviest brands, and a total conundrum for many others, since it requires marketers to capture the complex bilingual, bicultural sensibilities of this multidimensionagroup.

The Price For The Winners
The great news for those marketers willing to challenge the Hispanic marketing's status quo, to abandon assumptions and stereotypes, and to continue with an unbiased attitude through the path of researching, testing and extracting and analyzing insights from this group, is that they will eventually crack the code that will win over the “hottest” and fastest-growing segment of American consumers, and the rewards might be enjoyed for many years to come.

Link to Ivonne Kinser

Is advertising ghettoizing Multicultural Americans?

It is very hard to disagree with a statement like the one below when we refer to multicultural audiences while seriously and objectively considering today's reality of mainstream America:

"But at what point do you say...ok, those "different folks"...well, they are no longer the "different" ones. They represent a huge chunk of this country and calling their experience not-mainstream seems wrong. At some point you say "their experience, THAT'S the new American experience""

There is no waste in this very thought-provocking postI invite you to clickread, and come to your own conclusions...