tv KQED Newsroom PBS January 22, 2017 5:00pm-5:31pm PST
:: up next: austin, texas. the american consumer market is changing. lizette williams: latinos today are growing at a rate of four times the national average. diversity is just good business. hinojosa: but has the advertising industry changed with it? the traditional agency from the mad men tv series is long gone. we're not going to go all mariachi band, okay? i'm still seeing these white models in advertisements and it's not who i am. my objective is to make multicultural be the new mainstream. this is the new america-- black, brown, asian, lgbt, immigrants. the country is going through a major demographic shift, and the numbers show it. the face of the u.s. has changed. christina ibanez: we're american. we care about the same things. but yet we also want to preserve our culture. i just see it destroying what we had planned to happen here. hinojosa: by 2043, we will be a majority non-white nation.
norm gissel: we are making, as we speak, a new america. and it's a marvelous moment in american history. everybody's voice is important to this debate. hinojosa: america by the numbers. i'm maria hinojosa. this program was made possible in part by: the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from: behind every number, there's a story. and today's numbers tell a dramatic one. the combined purchasing power of non-white americans is over $3 trillion, almost a fifth of the u.s. economy. latino purchasing power makes up nearly half of that, and is growing fast.
the demographic changes happening nationwide are on full display here, deep in the heart of texas. with an already multicultural majority, its capital city, like much of the nation, is a fusion of diverse cultures. the demographic dominance of latinos and other ethnic groups is having a profound effect on consumer culture as we know it. and in order to stay competitive, brands need to reach diverse consumers now. we've come to austin, texas, to see how this all plays out in the high stakes world of advertising. this is latinworks, a leading ad agency with a specialty in multicultural campaigns. sergio alcocer is president and chief creative officer. wow, so this is a great office. so this is my office, yes. hinojosa: what is this? alcocer: these are photos that i did to create the hispanic american version of american gothic.
what i'm communicating here is that the future is changing. and i hope nobody gets offended, but i have no problem with-- with creating that tension. we started in 1998 as a hispanic agency. as a hispanic agency? as a hispanic agency, yes. and it was a very interesting time in the u.s. to be a hispanic agency. advertising was very ugly, actually. there was a lot of stereotypes and a lot of patronizing and american brands basically treating hispanics almost as the lowest common denominator and, you know, trying to connect with them in a very simplistic way. but we wanted to be a little more up to speed of what really was happening, and looking at the trend, looking at the future. hinojosa: traditionally, there have been two target groups: the general market, and a smaller multicultural market, divided by ethnicity. today, a new "total market" has emerged, which aims to reach everyone.
but, at its core, latino women and millennials, the primary targets, because their purchasing power is on the rise. why don't we start with some radio? in the latinworks war room, high stakes pitches are made to top-tier clients with multimillion dollar budgets. today, they're presenting to lizette williams, who leads multicultural marketing strategy at kimberly-clark. under her direction, this consumer products giant is launching its first national campaign to be centered around latino cultural references. we're not gonna go all mariachi band, okay? let's really think strategically about who she is, what drives her heart, you know, and how do we reach her in a really special way so that we understand, and she understands, that we get her. hinojosa: lizette is referring to latino women, who control the lion's share of the growing latino purchasing power. in fact, 86% of latinas report that women are the primary shoppers in their household, compared to 75% of u.s. women as a whole.
so brands are working hard to connect. for kimberly-clark, makers of well-known household products like diapers and paper towels, latinworks created "the fun song" campaign, celebrating family. so when you share that ringtone with your family you can say like, okay, whenever anyone from my family calls, ♪ somos la familia williams. and then-- and get that in your-- in your phone. hinojosa: it's designed to reach all consumers while speaking directly to latinas, who are increasingly driving the company's growth. we're thinking about splitting it in two phases. basically in the first phase we would concentrate on the song, and on the second phase we'd concentrate on the coupon, and the savings, right. i can walk you through it, quickly, in english. williams: yeah, let's hear it in english. let's do the english version. so we hear a phone call... (makes ringing sound) "hello?" "hey, sweetie-- did you get out of work?" "yeah, i'm on my way." "can you pick up some huggies diapers?" "sure, how many?" "mmm, just bring a box." and then...
♪ bring me a box, bring me a box ♪ ♪ box, box, box, bring me a box ♪ ♪ on your way to house, bring me a box ♪ ♪ bring me... and then the guy actually comes in in spanish still, me voy pa mi casa con mi caja. interjecting to the song, right? so you get that nice texture to it and still some authentic reggaeton there. i think the team has really done a fantastic job with, one, really leading with hispanic insights at the core of the program. but then really putting the activation design together to be total market and reach in appeal. can you tell us how you use numbers around demographic change to drive the decisions that you make around advertising for a multicultural world? what's happened over the last ten years is that we've really seen a shift in the demographics of the united states, particularly with latinos. latinos today are growing at a rate of 167%, and that's four times the national average. did you know that a decade ago?
did you say, "okay, this is coming"? were you already there? the 2010 census for us really changed everything. ten years ago, growth was coming from immigration and it was a much smaller segment. what's happened now, 70% of growth is coming from native-born hispanics. when you think about that, the face of the u.s. has changed and who we market to and how we do it has shifted. woman: ♪ yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. ♪ williams: if you think about a brand like diapers, 40% of millennials today, who is our target, are multicultural. 50% of babies are diverse. then you start to look at the opportunity a little bit differently. you really ask yourself, who is the "us" in the u.s.? who is that? hinojosa: christian filli is vice president of strategic planning at latinworks. one of his roles is to track demographic change and cultural trends throughout the country, which ultimately inform the agency's creative direction. we're looking at the top 20 dmas in the country. so, dma...? a designated market area, this is what it means.
so these are like the top 20 markets that drive consumers in the united states? right, so we're looking at approximately 45% of the total population in the country. okay. right? new york is almost off the chart in terms of just sheer population size. and so what you're... what this shows is that 50% of new york is a multicultural market? right. hinojosa: rapid multicultural growth in new york may not be surprising. but in metropolitan areas like boston, philadelphia, seattle and tampa, which in the past have been less diverse, multicultural populations are now growing at three to five times the rate of the overall population. one of the key takeaways here is diversity is just good business in the u.s. today. if you want to seriously do business at a national level, you need to look at where your growth is going to come from. and your growth is going to come from here. hinojosa: the ad world is increasingly targeting
multicultural markets. but it hasn't always been this way. (mad men theme playing) you're probably familiar with the tv show mad men, about new york's famed advertising men and women whose firms were located on madison avenue. advertising is based on one thing: happiness. we can say anything we want. hinojosa: in the '60s, mad men used clever ad campaigns to sell products. woman: nothing takes it off like noxzema medicated shave. (burlesque music playing) hinojosa: but people of color were missing from the smart, witty, and sexy ads. man: canada dry ginger ale. one gulp is for thirst, the other gulps are for kicks. hinojosa: in the images created by advertisers, the target consumer was primarily white and middle class. man: you buy a new car and what happens? your son spends more time behind the wheel than you do. well, why not? look at him, proud.
and i feel pretty good, too. hinojosa: rachel neal is an assistant professor of sociology at st. edwards university. kazique j. prince founded a firm that provides cultural competency training. they organize diversity meetups around austin. for them, examining images in advertising is second nature. when you think about advertisers who are trying to get you guys to buy their products, do you feel like they understand who you are? no, i don't think they understand. i think they are taking a nice stab at it. it's definitely different than, you know, the commercials of the past, you know, when i was growing up. ♪ bounce! ♪ my clothes smell fresh and clean ♪ ♪ bounce, bounce, my socks don't cling. ♪
prince: i was just glad to have a commercial with a black person in it. hinojosa: one. prince: yeah, one, the token. so you're like, "ahh, black people." whereas now, as a savvy consumer, i want more than just a representative. i need to have more than just one black character. neal: and even something that's just a little more creative. i find that most depictions of people of color in advertising just rely on the same old tropes, you know. just the same old preexisting stereotypes. man: just for fun of it, jell-o tonight. hinojosa: historically the advertising industry has used stereotypes as a go-to mechanism to sell products. man: the frito bandito made the magic. i turn your fritos corn chips into my fritos corn chips. hinojosa: people of color have often been depicted as inferior to whites, and women have been portrayed in submissive roles. and in recent years, big name brands like pepsico were forced to apologize
for commercials deemed by critics and consumers to be racist and misogynistic. man: all right, ma'am, we got 'em all lined up. nail this little sucker! come on, which one is he? point to him! no! i can't do this! no, no, no, no, no, no! hinojosa: latinworks references cultural stereotypes, but turns them on their head. in 2007 they created a commercial for the super bowl, the most watched program on american television, with over 40% of all u.s. households tuning in. alcocer: the super bowl in the united states is very important because it's the only moment in which americans care about advertising, right? so, we created a tv spot which was in anticipation of this multicultural society, in which hispanics are going to lead the multicultural movement. it was an important moment at the agency. man: okay, class, if you're in the south you say, "hey, feller, give me a bud light." all: "hey, feller, give me a bud light."
in new york you say, "hey, give me a bud light, you got a problem with that?" "bud light, you got a problem with that?" in east la you say, "give me a bud light, holmes." "give me a bud light, holmes." more importantly, if somebody asks you for a bud light, you say... all: "no speak english!" hinojosa: the strategy paid off. alcocer: you can see the plot of these minorities to beat "the man," let's say, right? recognizing i'm different, but i'm going to take that difference and make it my strength, my-- my power. filli: what's beautiful today is that because you have such multicultural environments in which we live in, people are like, "i want to create my own terminology. "i want to create my own definition. i want to define who i am on my own terms." so that would mean, in my context,
i'm okay that i was born in mexico, that i was raised in chicago, that i live in new york, that i married a man from the dominican republic, that i go back to mexico and i go to the dominican republic, that i'm from new york and chicago and that... you're not just okay, but you're proud of it. and you brag about it. right. which i think is fanta-- that's fantastic. right. and that's what people are doing. i am latin. african american. mexican. texan. chinese-american. latino. jewbana. biracial. gay. i am educated. a photographer. a filmmaker. soy poeta. soy colombiana y salvadoreña. pocha. i am white. chilango. i'm a colombian-texan. i am austin. i am... a millennial. ...whatever i wanna be. hinojosa: larger than the baby boomer generation, millennials-- those between the ages of 18 and 34-- make up nearly a quarter of the entire u.s. population.
of the close to 75 million millennials in the country, more than one in five is latino or latina. (rock music playing) rich garza is the co-founder of the annual pachanga latino music festival in austin and an expert at developing brand and consumer connections through sponsorships and marketing campaigns. garza: i'm seeing all these brands that are desperately chasing this latin millennial demographic. and if you look at the numbers, those are the folks that we're trying to talk to now, that we're trying to kind of create a community and a relationship. ♪ i kind of jokingly call this sort of the festival of the future, just based on who we're talking to and how we're programming it. hinojosa: millennials from across the state of texas and beyond attend the festival, and consumer branding to connect with them is everywhere.
i spoke with christina ibañez, one of the many latino millennials at the festival, who talked about why the sponsors and advertisers here resonate with her. christina ibañez: we're american. we care about the same things. but we also want to preserve our history. we want to preserve our culture. i think a lot of the sponsors that are here actually are the ones that are trying to learn something about our culture. whataburger, for example, i know they have a really strong latino campaign going. hinojosa: whataburger is the nation's eighth largest burger chain, spanning from arizona to florida. okay, you go first. hinojosa: in recent years, they've expanded digital, mobile, and latino marketing. aww. there you go. thank you. ibañez: the one thing i like about whataburger is that they use hashtags. they use twitter, they're using instagram. and that's where it's at. that's where people like me are going. rich garza: the way that the world works now, marketing, messaging, is just ubiquitous, it's everywhere. that's why we have to do a good job and do impactful things with our sponsorship
so that we're not just throwing stuff out there, but we're really thinking about what we're doing, trying to connect with young, bicultural millennials. hinojosa: later i caught up with christina and a few of her friends to get their perspectives on what it's like to be at the center of attention. so how does it make you feel that you know that there are people spending millions of dollars trying to figure out, like, who you are and what you wanna buy? we should start by saying that this whole idea of buying power isn't a conversation that we're necessarily having. i think that the conversation is just another way to marginalize our community and box us in and trying to quantify us and value us only by what we can spend. hinojosa: how do you think that latinos are portrayed in the ad world? i'm still seeing these white models or light skinned in particular in advertisements
and that's not... that's not who i am and that's not representative of me, so why am i gonna buy that product? ibañez: i don't really feel anyone's speaking to me. so mostly you feel invisible from the world of advertising? i don't see myself in the ads, which is not to say that latinos as a whole are invisible, but i think the image of latinos that's presented is not one that resonates with me. and that's sad, that means that advertising is not doing its job. hinojosa: at the pitch wall, back at the latinworks war room, i wondered how the agency responds to consumers, like the group of millennials i met, who don't feel represented. as the supervisor of casting, when you wanna create an image of what a "real latino" looks like, how do you do that as you cast? i don't think that there's one look for the real latino. we are not a monolithic group. there's black latinos that are absolutely underrepresented
in advertising. there's asian latinos. there's blonde latinos, there are redheaded latinos, there's brown latinos, et cetera. and in that sense, how does a latino look, it's a gigantic question. so this makes your work incredibly challenging? incredibly challenging and incredibly motivating because i think it's important that we move into being more real. hinojosa: in 2008, after a 28% drop in its latino sales, the mars corporation approached latinworks to help boost its starburst brand. alcocer: we created a spot that didn't even acknowledge nationality or origin and just went to the mindset of being a teenager. (laughing) alcocer: so he feeds him his starburst.
oh, my god. now that kid, is that a latino kid? that kid was actually a latino kid but it doesn't matter. the important thing is that we were talking to teens. and, you know, a teen is a teen first and a latino teen second. he looks a little bit like the llama. yeah, well, that was the cast, they are good friends. they are good friends. hinojosa: the commercial was a hit. the advertising industry awarded latinworks a cannes lion-- the equivalent of an oscar-- for the llama spot. latino sales for starburst went up by 15% and the mars corporation increased budgets and new business for latinworks. (grunting) toma un snickers. mejor? mejor! hinojosa: every single year of the past decade, budgets for latino ads have grown faster than the rest of the industry. over the past five years, the top 500 u.s. advertisers
increased their spending by 63%. at latinworks, the team straddles the line between creating ethnic-specific advertising and ads that connect with everyone. so, how do you as a team kind of feel about creating the image of the new normal, the new mainstream in the united states, all of you? sánchez: what i focus on is just, what do i want to hear? it simplifies it because, you know, i'm basically writing creative a lot of times for myself. my wife is the consumer, i'm the consumer. my brother who just moved to the u.s. also is the consumer, and then i try to, you know, see different points in the life of multicultural target person here. but yeah, sometimes i forget about that, yes, we're creating that new normal. hinojosa: but, as a whole, is the ad industry keeping up? consumer voices demanding change have gotten louder and brands appear to be responding.
do you guys feel that advertisers have done something right? at any time can you think of a commercial or of an ad where you were just like, "wow"? well, the cheerios commercial was super cute. yeah, cheerios, yeah, yeah. gracie: mom? mom: yes, honey? dad told me that cheerios is good for your heart. is that true? neal: the cheerios commercial was actually creative. it was different than what we normally see and i think people really responded to that. dad: kim? prince: and if they had done a similar commercial with a lesbian couple or a gay couple, it would have been just as effective. hinojosa: not everyone had the same reaction. the general mills cheerios commercial sparked a social media backlash with such hateful posts, the company disabled the comments section. but the response to the backlash was overwhelmingly positive, inspiring a new wave of commercials
celebrating american diversity. woman: ♪ o beautiful, for spacious skies ♪ (girl singing in spanish) hinojosa: the u.s. experienced a watershed media moment during and after the 2014 super bowl. three commercials highlighted the multicultural transformation. cheerios came back with a sequel to their biracial family spot. coca-cola presented a commercial with diverse americans singing "america the beautiful" in different languages. and a chevrolet ad included gay parents, single parents, and multi-generational households. other brands followed suit. can you talk at all about how fear of change in the united states, the browning of america, you know, the new american mainstream, do you think that the conversation around change and fear is now shifting to something else? i mean, i think we're living in a country that is largely more accepting of change,
largely more accepting of diversity, and we've seen examples of that throughout the last ten years. hinojosa: like the two that followed it, the 2014 super bowl's much-awaited halftime show, featured mega-hit talent that captured the growing multicultural state of mind that's driving top brand messaging choices. williams: you know, i watched the super bowl, and bruno mars performed, which was amazing because he's puerto rican, jewish and filipino, and was out there with the red hot chili peppers doing james brown dance moves. and here we are at the most iconic american event of all time and this is what is happening in this country. hinojosa: as diverse consumers grow in numbers, only time will tell if advertising can keep up with the changing face of america.
since my visit to latinworks, the agency has continued to grow, now boasting 30 million dollars in revenue and 150 employees. it's currently listed as the second top revenue earning latino ad agency in the country. in march of 2016, lizette williams was named as a black enterprise top woman executive in advertising and marketing. the pachanga music festival evolved into a quarterly concert series. and recent projections estimate that by 2050, latinos will account for almost a third of the u.s. population, positioning the multicultural consumer market to play an even larger role in our economic growth. hinojosa: to learn more about this and other episodes of america by the numbers with maria hinojosa, please visit pbs.org. america by the numbers with maria hinojosa is available on dvd.
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