How can U.S. automobile dealers reach their local Hispanic market?

Many US Auto Dealers are stagnant reaching their fair share of their Hispanic market.

With a population of over 50 Million, Hispanic economic power is the 12th largest economy in the world. It’s buying power is approximately $1.5 Trillion and it can only grow considering Hispanics also have the youngest fastest growing population.

So far, manufacturers like Toyota, Honda and Nissan have recognized their importance and have developed campaigns specifically for Hispanics and tailored to their culture rather than just translating generic Anglo campaigns. For Toyota it has worked successfully and it has captured 19% market share among Hispanic consumers.

Although national manufacturer campaigns are helpful for Dealers, they are not enough to capture their local community and for the vast majority their share of the market remains stagnant and to some dealers almost non-existent. Currently there are 9 States with a Latino population that exceeds 1 Million and frankly it is worth for auto dealers to look further into tapping and maximizing their opportunities within their local Latino community.

The challenge for most dealers in reaching out to their local Spanish speakers is getting the word around that they are Hispanic friendly and can service their needs in their language as well as establishing roots within the community through targeted and constant advertising.

A local dealer must first research the nucleus of their local community and identify the main nationality in that area. In order to identify with their community you must first speak their language and also identify with their country of origin. Many advertisements are too generic to certain population and therefore are not successful in attracting new potential buyers to the showroom. For example, In the Washington DC metro the Hispanic population is 60 -70 % Central American, 13-15 % Mexican and the rest South American and Caribbean, you can’t run a successful campaign by running advertisement that does not appeal to the majority, just because they all speak Spanish it does not mean they all have the same interest, hobbies educational background and dialect. At the same time you couldn’t run the same campaign in South Florida where the vast majority is Cuban or Central Florida where is Puerto Rican. The message for you is not to waste valuable advertising budget on a doomed campaign that will not connect with your local community, do your research and know where and how to advertise. Perform focus groups with actual members of the community to test results and reactions and don’t immediately buy into a generic idea from your English-speaking advertising agency.

Advertising through traditional methods and reaching the Hispanic market can be very expensive and a long time investment that most dealers are not going nor willing to invest and therefore will never experience the reward of adopting a very loyal and vibrant community.

Besides being slow , very hard to evaluate its impact  and non interactive, the traditional means of advertising are failing to give the auto dealer a bang for their buck, besides an occasional consumer that probably will have ended up at the dealer, they are not delivering a message that will connect with them or enough reason to visit a showroom, and that makes it hard for a dealer to justify as much as $200,000 per year on an ineffective campaign. Most dealers are just hoping that the customer will stumble upon their inventory through a third-party English site.

I believe there is a better way for dealers to successfully reach their local Hispanic market and I will discuss at length on our next article! Stay tuned…

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