Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Ethnic Marketing Memo: Upcoming Hispanic Retail 360 Conference Will Take A 'Full Look' At Latino Consumer Behavior and Hispanic Marketing in the USA

The upcoming Hispanic 360 Retail Summit conference, June 28-30 in Miami, Florida USA, will examine a myriad of issues and topics involving Latino culture and consumer behavior, Hispanic foods and cuisine, and marketing to the fast-growing Hispanic consumer segment in the United States.

In conjunction with the Hispanic retail conference, which is being held at the Intercontinental Hotel in Miami, will be a Hispanic product showcase, which the conference organizers and sponsors say will be the largest single product expo in U.S. history devoted exclusively to food, grocery and non-foods products targeted to Latino consumers.

Hispanic or Latino Americans are the fastest-growing ethnic group in the U.S. Currently about 14-15% of the entire U.S. population are Hispanic. Further, in many places in the U.S., like California, Arizona, New Mexico Texas, Florida and a few other states, Latinos comprise as much as 30-50% of the total population.

U.S. Hispanic or Latino Americans also aren't a monolithic group. There are Hispanics of Mexican, Latin and Central American backgrounds, as well as Puerto Ricans, Cubans and other Hispanic Americans who live in the U.S. There are significant differences in the food preferences of consumers from each of these backgrounds.

The sponsors of the upcoming three-day Hispanic 360 Retail Summit conference and product showcase include some of the biggest consumer packaged goods and grocery industry companies in the world. Some of these sponsors include: Coca-Cola Co., Anheuser Busch, marketer of Budweiser and other beer brands; wholesale grocer McClane Co.; and Mi Patria food company.

The conference portion of the event is packed with speakers from a wide-range of backgrounds speaking on a wide range of marketing and related topics.

The speakers include senior executives from mass merchandiser Target stores, Coca-Cola Co., Nielsen marketing research's Hey! Nielsen division and numerous other speakers. You can view an agenda of the conference, including the speakers and when they will present, here.

There's also a tour of the Miami-area stores of two supermarket chains, Winn-Dixie and Publix (its Publix Sabor Hispanic store), which are aggressively targeting and marketing to Hispanic consumers in the region, as part of the conference's numerous educational activities.

The Hispanic Retail 360 Summit Hispanic Retail educational conference and product expo is being produced by market researcher Nielsen.

Last year's Hispanic retail conference and product expo had attendees from food and grocery retail companies, manufacturers, marketing firms, brokerage houses, media companies and others. Read a list of the companies and others who attended last years conference here.

Marketing to Hispanics is the fastest growing ethnic retailing segment among America's food and grocery retailers, as well as manufacturing and marketing companies. For example, yesterday we wrote here about Wal-Mart's new "Hispanic Community" store format and its first store of the format which is opening today in Garland, Texas.

Other food and grocery retailers putting a major focus on Hispanic retail marketing include: Target, Safeway Stores, Inc., SuperValu, Inc., Kroger Co., Publix, Winn-Dixie and numerous others. Those names are just the tip of the iceberg.

Food and grocery industry suppliers and marketers--ranging from consumer packaged goods companies and fresh produce marketers, to fresh meat companies and non-foods marketers--also are stepping up their marketing to target Hispanic retailers, often working in partnership with food and grocery retailers.

Advertising to Latino consumers also is one of the fastest segments in the print, broadcast and online advertising industries. This includes massive growth in Spanish language newspapers, websites and TV and radio stations. But it also includes increased use of English language media--TV commercials, radio spots, print and website ads--to reach Hispanic consumers, since most of them speak both English and Spanish.

During the Hispanic Retail 360 Summit, the conference's organizers and sponsors will give out "Hispanic Retail Excellence Awards," in six categories or classes of trade--mass merchant, supermarket, convenience store, department store, drug store and specialty store.

In the supermarket class of trade category, last years winner of the "Hispanic Retail Excellence Award" was the Arizona-based Bashas' supermarkets chain. The 2006 winner in the supermarket category was Los Angeles, California-based JAX Markets, a multi-store independent in the region that specializes in targeted and catering to Hispanic consumers. In 2005, the winner was another Southern California-based multi-store independent, Pros Ranch Market, which operates Hispanic consumer-oriented stores in Southern California and Arizona.

For additional information about June's Hispanic retail marketing conference, including information on how to register and attend, just click on this link for the conference website. And, if you attend, bring lots of shorts and other light clothing, as Miami Beach in June is nice and warm.

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