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'Diverse and Distinct' shoppers.

CHICAGO--A new study from SymphonyIRI Group Inc. underlines the opportunities for consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies that focus on the growing Hispanic population in this country.

According to "Diverse and Distinct: The Hispanic Population Delivers Numerous Segments and Opportunities--and an Exceptionally Fast-Growing Market," the value of the Hispanic shopper, or shoppers, lies not only in their Census numbers. To be sure, between 2000 and 2010, Hispanics were the fastest-growing segment, expanding from 12.5% of the population to 16.3%--four times the rate of the total population.

But the lure for CPG marketers lies in their purchasing power, which is growing at a rate more than double the national rate. That power is driven by a number of factors, including family size, which tends to be bigger than the general population, and a culture that values cooking and eating together. These factors translate into higher per-trip expenditure by Latino shoppers than their non-Hispanic counterparts.

However, like other studies, "Diverse and Distinct" cautions that there is no such thing as a monolithic Hispanic consumer. "CPG players would be remiss to approach this essential market with a one-size-fits-all strategy," says Staci Covkin, author of the report and principal of Consumer & Shopper Insights for SymphonyIRI. "To connect with Hispanic shoppers and develop meaningful, lasting relationships, it is critical that marketers approach Hispanic shoppers with unique, targeted marketing strategies."


Indeed, the report highlights several of the key differentiators between different Hispanic segments, starting with country of origin, level of acculturation, economy, community, and exposure to marketing and advertising. Unacculturated Hispanics, it points out, differ greatly on certain key behaviors, including brand loyalty, purchase influencers (such as children and media) and shopping preferences.

For example, while acculturated Hispanics share many behaviors with the general population (as would be expected), unacculturated Latinos put a much greater focus on family, and approach meal preparation, and cooking from scratch in particular, as a way to show affection to their families.

Not surprisingly, unacculturated Latinos place much greater importance when selecting a store on such factors as Spanishlanguage signage and store personnel who speak Spanish (in their particular dialect). But they also are looking for products they used to purchase in their country of origin. Like general market shoppers, they make selections based heavily on price and proximity.

They are also far more brand loyal than their acculturated counterparts, although that loyalty is not limited to national brands. The SymphonyIRI report emphasizes that investing the time, money and effort to build strong brand relationships with these consumers early in their acculturation process can provide long-standing rewards. That will mean further developing their communication messages and platforms and, for retailers, their store environments.

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Title Annotation:SPOTLIGHT
Date:Jul 9, 2012
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