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symphonyiri-hispanic-store-preferences-june2012.pngThe fast-growing Hispanic consumer market is far from homogenous in its buying habits, according to [pdf] a study released in June 2012 by SymphonyIRI. For example, examining reasons for preferring to shop at the store where they do most of their shopping, the study finds that unacculturated Hispanics are far less influenced by good sales than their Americanized counterparts (8% vs. 52%). By contrast, they want products from their countries of origin (27%) more than do acculturated Hispanics (6%). And where 22% of unacculturated Hispanics look for bilingual signage, just 1% of the acculturated segment does.

Acculturated Hispanics and Non-Hispanics Shop More Similarly

Acculturated Hispanics more closely resemble non-Hispanics than unaccultured Hispanics in how they make shopping decisions. For example, just 5% of both acculturated Hispanics and non-Hispanics say that their friends or neighbors shopping there is a reason for shopping at their preferred store, while 16% of unacculturated Hispanics say the same. And, although just 2% of acculturated Hispanics and 1% of the non-Hispanic population look for Spanish-speaking employees, a significant 26% of unacculturated Hispanics do so.

Brand Loyalty Strong Among Unacculturated Hispanics

Data from SymphonyIRI’s “Diverse and Distinct: The Hispanic Population Delivers Numerous Segments and Opportunities–and an Exceptionally Fast-Growing Market” indicates that brand loyalty within the unacculturated segment far outpaces that of both the acculturated Hispanic and general populations.

When asked if they prefer to buy the same brands some or most of the time, just 16% of non-Hispanics and 5% of acculturated Hispanics completely agreed, compared to one-third of unacculturated Hispanics. Overall, more than three-quarters of unacculturated Hispanics prefer to consistently purchase the same brands (strongly agreeing or agreeing), indicating that establishing and building strong brand relationships with these shoppers early in the acculturation process is key.

Spanish-Language Media Spending Shows Healthy Gains

Recognizing the potential of the Hispanic market – and most likely unaccultured Hispanics – advertising spend on Spanish-language media was up strongly in Q1 2012, according to Kantar Media, driven largely by consumer brands such as Procter & Gamble. Spanish-language TV jumped 20.7% year-over-year in Q1, versus 7.6% growth for total TV media expenditures. Spanish-language magazine spending surged by 26.5%, defying a 3.4% decline for all magazines. And expenditures on Spanish language newspapers also posted healthy 4.7% growth, while overall newspaper spending fell 4.3%.

Other Findings:

  • Per the SymphonyIRI report, the Hispanic market segment accounts for more than 16% of the total US population, and grew by 43% during the past decade by US census data. This segment is expected to hold $1.3 trillion in purchasing power in 2012. According to a newly released Packaged Facts report, the upscale Latino market (with household income over $75k), represents 21% of all Latino households, and holds more than $0.5 trillion in buying power
  • Hispanic spending at club stores is up 4.9% year-over-year, versus 3.5% for the non-Hispanic segment, according to the SymphonyIRI report.
  • Hispanic spending at convenience stores and gas stations is down 4.5%, but up 10.8% for non-Hispanics.
  • Hispanics spend 20% and 36% more in club and mass merchandise outlets, respectively, than the general population.
  • Hispanic shoppers spend nearly 8% more on consumer packaged goods (CPG) than any other population, with particularly strong spending in the mass merchandise and club channels.

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