Engaging CultureStrategy & Marketing

What Nonprofits and Ministries Should Know About the Hispanic Community

When you look at the calendar and see that Cinco de Mayo is around the corner, what’s your first reaction? If words like ‘controversy’ or ‘steer clear’ popped into your head, you wouldn’t be the only one. Heated debates about cultural appropriation have arisen in recent years. These important, but contentious, conversations have dominated many Americans’ feelings aboutthe holiday.

Unfortunately, many nonprofit and ministry leaders feel the same way about the Hispanic market. Maybe you’ve never tried speaking to this community for lack of knowledge or fear of miscommunication.

Last year our friends at the Kerux Group, a Hispanic marketing agency, participated in the Culture Marketing Council Annual Conference. Chief strategist Ivan Leon interviewed sixteen industry experts, including executives at Comcast, Pepsico, Verizon, and Nestle.

Now you can see these interviews for yourself. With each conversation, also come supplemental articles integrating conference sessions and beyond. All this is here so YOU can speak to the hearts of Hispanics. Don’t let another Cinco de Mayo pass without getting equipped.

Sign up here to get this brand new resource packed with actionable advice.

As a sneak peek, I asked Ivan to share 5 facts he discovered while doing these interviews, and which all nonprofits should know about the Hispanic community.

1. Hispanics have major economic power.  Renowned journalist Maria Elena Salinas sat down for one of these interviews. “I have seen the purchasing power of Latinos grow tremendously,” Maria told Ivan. In the last forty years, U.S. Hispanics have climbed from 14 million to 60 million. The group’s collective buying power is currently around $1.7 trillion. Maria also pointed out that they are disproportionately young, with years of buying power ahead. Hispanics’ economic influence has surged, and it’s still growing. Right now, you may feel unprepared to engage Hispanics, but you’re risking more by hanging back.

2. Hispanics care about community and social causes. Hispanics may have big buying power, but they have more on their minds than the latest products. Who better to confirm this than Meghann Elrhoul, Head of Global Research for Twitter? Meghann explained that many Hispanics are active on social media around socio political issues. This isn’t new; community, culture, and religion have been core values of Hispanic culture for a long time. Recent data from Nielsen Media Research shows that 67 percent of Hispanics consider themselves to be religious people. Your message probably already resonates more with Hispanics than you realize.

3. Hispanics are influencers. Maybe you’re hesitating to engage because the approach seems limited in scope. According to Rick Gomez, CMO of Target, what Hispanics talk and care about is actually relevant to a much bigger market. Hispanic food, music, and media are quickly gaining a heightened role in American culture. Hispanics over-index in their use of new technology, blazing a trail for others. If Hispanics become a part of your organization’s mission, others will follow. Rick shared that Hispanics are no longer a siloed audience. Their insights are key to addressing the entire country.

4. Culture > language. Your next thought may be “translate.” The truth is, it’s not that simple. “The challenge is to recognize the power of culture,” said Isaac Mizrahi, chairman of the Culture Marketing Council. Second and third generation Hispanics are becoming a bigger part of the market, and most are bilingual. A more consistently valuable strategy is to focus on cultural nuance. Demonstrate that your organization understands what Hispanics love and need. Isaac says this can be done in English, Spanish, or both. Listening to Hispanics and responding in kind is not fast or easy, but it’s worth the effort.

5. Hispanics aren’t as mysterious as you think. Culture is complex and bridging those divides can be intimidating. However, that’s no reason to shy away from Hispanic marketing. Court Stroud is a consultant for the Cledor Group, and he says the help you need is out there. “You don’t have to have the expertise to speak to the Hispanic community,” he told Ivan. “Find partners that do.” Professionals like Court, and Ivan, have insight into what makes Hispanics tick, and they are ready to help your organization.

Take a step toward reaching the hearts of Hispanics by first educating yourself about this audience. And now you can do it easily and at no cost.

Request now your FREE access pass to this eye-opening collection of instructional videos.

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  1. Surprising to hear about the Hispanic culture’s growing buying power. Quite a number of Latino pastors have lamented to me that their congregations just don’t tithe and their churches are always struggling financially.

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