Dec 15, 2015 by MediaLife Hispanic
Next year will be a strong one for Hispanic ad spending, with the Olympics and the presidential election, yet there’s still more money that should be funneled into Hispanic media that’s not. In part that’s because advertisers remain confused about the best way to reach Hispanics, including whether to use English- or Spanish-language media. And in part this it’s also because English-language media has been so slow to embrace true biculturalism, such as shows or magazines that truly show a Hispanic influence. Carlos Santiago, president and chief executive officer at Santiago Solutions Group and research chair at the Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies, talks to Media Life about what to expect for ad spending next year, how TV is holding up in the digital age, and why media buyers are still confused about Hispanic media.
What’s the general outlook for Hispanic ad spending in 2016? How much do you think it will rise over 2015?
I think it will be up.
I think that this last year might have been down from 2014 because of the World Cup. So those are normal fluctuations, and next year is a political year. There are several big soccer games that will help boost it also. So I think overall next year it should be up, but the key question is if the percentage of the overall ad spend will go up, stay the same or go lower.
Which media will see the biggest gains and why?
TV and digital, but TV with Hispanics is still the major vehicle.
We should see TV going up substantially because of the Olympics and elections. A lot of that spending will be on TV. But I also believe digital and mobile will also see major increases. That has also been the case in previous years.
Is TV suffering from any of the problems that English-language TV is facing, in terms of competition from digital? Why or why not?
Yes, absolutely. I think not to the same degree because there are not as many Hispanic-centric digital outlets.
But overall Hispanics are going to a lot of sites and content that attracts the general population, especially bicultural Millennials–they go to a lot of the same channels, such as YouTube and social media. That continues to increase and it should create healthy competition to traditional TV.
And also sites such as Univision.com and the NBCU properties online are placing major priorities on those media, to increase the Hispanic traffic. But at the end of the day there’s lots of competition online.
What sort of impact do you expect to see from political? Will candidates spend more this time around on reaching Hispanics via local TV or social media? Why or why not?
I think the Hispanic vote is going to be critical this year.
It always goes down to those states where Democrats feel they’re very close to the Republicans, but they will have to ensure that the Hispanic voters get out. In a lot of elections, Hispanic voters have a certain degree of apathy about the system, and overall the U.S. doesn’t have very high voter turnout.
So it’s really critical to make sure they’re very energized, and I actually think Trump is doing a good job at that. But they’ll have to make sure in key swing states the Hispanic vote is out there. For example, Florida has been a major swing state in the past three elections, and there’s a major influx of Puerto Ricans that are now able to vote. Usually that’s kind of the epicenter of the decision of the U.S., so that’s going to be very, very important. Broward County and Orange County will be very critical.
I would say these elections are going to be bigger than ever, the political dollars, including Hispanic. Hillary Clinton cannot do without that vote, and it cannot be taken for granted, so I think we’ll see a lot of spending.