7 posts categorized "Immigration"

'Sleeping giant' Latino vote yet to awaken

By Dave Schechter, CNN Senior National Editor
Wed May 30, 2012

Hdr-politics

Not one 'Latino vote'

Conventional wisdom lumps together "the Latino vote." But that community includes millions of people claiming dozens of countries of origin, speaking more than just Spanish. It is not now -- nor in the future -- likely to be anything so homogenous.

Juan Guillermo Tornoe, owner of Hispanic Trending Inc., a marketing and advertising firm in Austin, Texas, and author of the Hispanic Trending blog, is "counting the days" until he is eligible to become a U.S. citizen in a couple of years and vote in a presidential election.

For several years, Tornoe, a Guatemala native who came to the United States 10 years ago and now has permanent resident status, has talked about the nuances of the Latino community, the kinds of things companies marketing products (and political parties marketing candidates) need to know.

"There is not one Latino Vote; there is a multitude of Latino votes and candidates, society, and the media need to fully understand this if they are ever going to connect with the different parts of the Hispanic community," he advised.

Tornoe cringes "every time someone refers to Latinos as a unified voting bloc or as a homogeneous market segment. We are way too diverse for this."

"There are many differences between Hispanics, depending upon the person's country of origin or heritage: Food and music preferences as well as the holidays they celebrate are some of the most obvious," Tornoe says. "The actual words they use to describe persons, places, actions and things can vary immensely as well. There is also a lot of ideological baggage that comes along with one's country of origin/heritage."



As for generational differences, Tornoe said: "It is a completely different worldview depending how far away generationally Hispanics are from their country of origin/heritage.

"First-generation (foreign-born) Latinos have experienced life outside the U.S., have gone through the immigration experience, and to different degrees, have embraced or become acquainted with living in America. Second-generation Latinos encounter a mixed experience, being born and growing up in the United States, but brought up by immigrants and thus heavily exposed and influenced by their parents' culture.

"Finally, Latinos who are third generation and beyond are the sons and daughters of U.S.-born parents. They are very much influenced by the general market but still connect to their roots through the values, traditions and culture passed on by their parents and grandparents."

When it comes to citizenship, Tornoe, who hopes to be officially an American in three years, is clear.

"Being a U.S.-born citizen puts you in a completely different frame of mind than that of a naturalized U.S. citizen, someone who's a permanent resident (who could be counting the days to becoming a citizen or simply choosing to never become one), someone here on a temporary work visa or an undocumented alien," he said. "All of these are part of the Latino population, but only a percentage of them are able to vote.

"Then, among the latter, it is not the same to be able to vote, than to be a registered voter and actually cast your vote. Lack of participation in the democratic process is one of the major problems among the Hispanic community."

Read the entire article @ CNN


Reach Latinos through 'the culture,' speaker urges business leaders

March 22, 2011
By Ron Cammel

The growing Latino market is diverse and cannot be reached by clichéd sales pitches, Juan Tornoe told hundreds gathered for the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce awards ceremony Monday at the JW Marriott.

But that did not stop him from having some fun with stereotypes.

In Grand Rapids Tornoe, a national business consultant and blogger of Hispanic Trending, summed up the growth in the U.S. Hispanic population quite simply: Salsa now outsells ketchup.

But he was serious about businesses reaching the estimated 47 million Latinos in the United States, or 16 percent of the population, whose buying power has grown much faster than the non-Hispanic population’s.

How does a business connect?

“It’s the culture, stupid!” he said.

“Hispanic people overwhelmingly say they want to preserve their families’ culture,” Tornoe said. “If you speak to the heart of the Latino community, it goes a long way.”

He said Latinos value social harmony, social flexibility and social speed — they tend to become friendly faster. It’s important for sales people to spend a little more time on the small talk and getting to know a person in the Hispanic community before talking business, he said.

And family comes first, he said. Hispanic women are a growing force in Hispanic-owned businesses, not for the wealth, but to look out for the interests of their families, he said.

Don’t assume Hispanics want to be spoken to in Spanish, he said. The large majority of Hispanics who use the Internet regularly, for example, use English sites.

If you want to joke around with “Spanglish,” be careful, he cautioned. Some advertisements have turned off the Hispanic community. Regular English-to-Spanish translations are difficult enough: A T-shirt hawked after the pope’s visit to Miami read in Spanish, “I saw the potato.”

Tornoe said businesses reaching out to Hispanics need to remember the broad range of income, education and social levels, while recognizing some common cultural characteristics.

But in any case, the Hispanic market is here to stay, he said. “It’s not a matter of when you reach them. You will. It’s a matter of understanding them.”

Source: MLive.com


“If I were an aging white person”

Note from Juan: Usually I am not this insistent, but today I am compelled to urge you to read my friend Dave's article. It is a must read for anyone living in the United States today, especially for those with "issues" regarding the nation's increasing diversity.


March 3, 2009
By Dave Schechter
CNN Senior National Editor

“If I were an aging white person,” Ron Crouch begins provocatively, “I’d want to find some young black and Hispanic families and ask them how they’re doing because those young Hispanics and blacks will be taking my butt down the road” as they become the taxpayers and leaders of an increasingly multi-cultural America.

Continue reading Dave's post on CNN's AC360 Blog.


Juan's Again on CNN: Latino Immigrants and the Current Economic Crisis

I'm very happy to share with you my most recent post on CNN's Anderson Cooper 360 Blog: http://ac360.blogs.cnn.com/2008/12/02/latino-immigrants-and-the-current-economic-crisis/

Please visit the site, read the post, comment, and if it made you think, I'd greatly appreciate if you could share it with your friends and coworkers.

Un abrazo,

Juan

Latinos Economic Crisit


Segmentation of the Hispanic Market

By Juan Tornoe

All Latinos are not the same.

It is true that we all carry Latin American and/or Spanish heritage in our blood, but that is the only variable that won't vary (some may say this is cutting us short, but let's use this definition for the purposes of this discussion). As I've discussed in previous articles, there are certain cultural characteristics that you need to be aware of in order to better understand the Latino frame of mind:

    * Degree of intimacy
    * Level of interaction
    * Social harmony
    * Personal contact
    * Respect for authority

These are extremely important and a great starting point for truly connecting with Hispanics. Then again, the Latino community is so diverse, that if you limit yourself to only these general characteristics, it will still be quite challenging to effectively and efficiently reach out to the market you specifically are trying to attract.

You also need to be aware of additional variables that influence Latinos, both as distinct groups and as individuals. Here, in no particular order, are some of the traits to consider when identifying the group (or groups) of Latinos on whom you will focus your marketing efforts in order to tailor a message that resonates with them:

1. Country of Origin / Heritage: There are many differences between Hispanics, depending upon the person's country of origin or heritage: Food and music preferences, as well as the Holidays they celebrate are some of the most obvious. The actual words they use to describe persons, places, actions and things can vary immensely as well.

2. Language Preference: What is the actual language that your target group prefers? Do they usually speak and read in English or Spanish? Are they fully bilingual or closer to either end of the English-Spanish language spectrum? This is of utmost importance when developing your message. Will you talk to them exclusively in English or Spanish? Will you talk to them in both languages? Will you utilize Spanglish (code-switching)?

3. Generation: It is a completely different worldview depending how far away, generationally, Hispanics are from their country of origin/heritage. First generation (foreign-born) Latinos have experienced life outside the U.S., have gone through the immigration experience, and to different degrees, have embraced or become acquainted with living in America. Second generation Latinos encounter a mixed experience, being born and growing up in the United States, but brought up by immigrants and thus heavily exposed and influenced by their parents' culture. Finally, Latinos who are third generation and beyond are the sons and daughters of U.S.-born parents. They are very much influenced by the general market, but still connect to their roots through the values, traditions, and culture passed on by their parents and grandparents.

4. Place of Residence: Latinos living in different parts of the country have completely different life experiences. It depends on the size of their city or town, its demographic composition, and how much or little interaction they have with fellow Latinos. Hispanics living in Los Angeles, Houston, Miami or New York have a vastly different experience and easier access to all things Hispanic than if they reside in Boise or Billings.

5. Socio-Cultural Level: In most cases, foreign-born Latinos obtain a higher income level and greater buying power than they experienced in their home countries. Still, even while their wallets or bank accounts tell one story, their buying habits and overall lifestyles could tell a different story. Their mind-set may cause them to retain financial habits learned in the past, meaning they may be spending less than their buying power would indicate. In other cases, immigrants may arrive in the U.S. with a high socio-cultural and economic level and broader world-view, which creates a completely different set of needs.

6. Acculturation: How much have Hispanics modified or adapted their attitudes and behaviors as a result of contact with mainstream America? What new systems of thought, beliefs, emotions and communication systems have they embraced in order to exist in a new cultural environment without abandoning their heritage?

7. Assimilation: While often used interchangeably with acculturation, this is actually the process of giving up a cultural heritage and becoming absorbed into the mainstream culture. How much has a Latino "forgotten" about their heritage in order to see him/herself as part of a larger national family?

8. Income Level: In general terms, the higher a person's income level (this applies to all people, not only Latinos) the likelier they will have their basic needs fulfilled. The wants and/or needs addressed in your targeted marketing message will need to take this into consideration.

As you can see, it is a combination of all these distinct variables that defines the Hispanic group (or groups) that you will focus on. A good way to understand the interaction between these variables is considering each as an element of a matrix, and the point of intersection of all these variables defines the part of the market you are trying to reach.

As mentioned before, this analysis could be executed down to an individual level, but for marketing purposes it is completely cost prohibitive and would deliver a dreadful ROI. The idea behind this explanation is that you need to perform your due diligence and understand where the majority of the people you are trying to reach land on this matrix, modifying your message according to this insight.

Originally Published on LatPro.com on January, 2008


My “Immigrant” T-Shirt

By Juan Tornoe

A couple years ago the folk from Klaus Industries came out with an “Immigrant” T-shirt and kindly sent me a sample.

Immigrant_2

I’ve been having some fun with it at my gym, which as one of my Latino friends who came to check out their installations said, “Is filled with Blanquitos”. There is certainly an overwhelming majority of White Anglo-Saxon-looking person there.

It cracks me up to see people’s expressions after they decipher the not-so-in- your-face word on my chest. They are a mixture of double takes, looking for something in the ceiling, and a few condescending looks.  The T-shirt is yet to start a conversation (or discussion).

It’s funny to see how, within one or two generations the most, people forget where they came from. Every single one of these persons who feel uncomfortable about the fact that I am an immigrant and am letting the “whole gym” know about it, have parents, grandparents or someone else up their family tree that came from elsewhere to settle in this great nation.

Are you reacting in a similar manner? Could it be affecting your business?