Hispanic Media Experts Advise DC-Area Audience on Marketing to Latinos

October 6, 2011
by Danny Selnick, Vice President, Public Policy Services

Business Wire’s LatinoWire hosted a panel  event for professional communicators on Sept. 28 at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.

The panel featured:

  • Erica Gonzalez, Executive Editor of El Diario/La Prensa
  • Julio Aliaga, News Director, Telemundo (Washington, DC affiliate)
  • Hilda Garcia, Vice President of Multiplatform Content and Information for impreMedia
  • Charlie Ericksen, Managing Editor and founder of Hispanic Link
Danny Selnick, Julio Aliaiga, Erica Gonzales, Hilda Garcia and Charlie Ericksen

L-R: Danny Selnick, Julio Aliaga, Erica Gonzales, Hilda Garcia. Seated: Charlie Ericksen. Photo by: Michael Toner/Business Wire

Moderated by Danny Selnick, vice president for Business Wire’s Public Policy Services, panel members all underscored the notion that professional communicators must understand the particular needs and interests of this ethnic community and the Hispanic media that is in touch with their readers, viewers and listeners — only with that understanding can communicators successfully connect.

Key points made by each panelist:

Erica Gonzalez:

Erica pointed out that it is important to understand the history of Hispanic journalism.  Spanish-language media should be treated as a valid news outlet – not a 2nd class one.   Your news should relate to the audience – just because it has been translated into Spanish doesn’t qualify it as being newsworthy to the audience.

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Just in Time for Hispanic Heritage Month, Tips for Reaching the Hispanic Media

September 1, 2011
by Pilar Portela, West Media Relations Supervisor, Ethnic Circuits
Pilar Portela

Pilar Portela, West Media Relations Supervisor, Ethnic Media Circuits

New Census data shows US Hispanics have become the second-largest population with 50 million citizens.  Their buying power should reach a projected $1.3 trillion in 2015. With Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15) right around the corner and in anticipation of the 2012 presidential elections there is renewed interest in reaching this demographic.

As the media relations supervisor overseeing LatinoWire, I provide media outlets with content relevant to their coverage area and help our clients with questions uniquely inherit to Latino media and pitching them successfully.  I wanted to share my thoughts on some of our most frequently asked questions.

1)      Send your release in both English and Spanish.

US Hispanic media organizations are becoming more bilingual catering to both English and Spanish-speaking Latinos to increase their audience.  Sending in both languages saves them from having to translate your release. Additionally, merged newsrooms such as NBC/Telemundo have staff that may not speak Spanish. It ensures they will be able to read your press release and consider it for their newscast.

2)      Don’t skimp on Spanish-language translation.

Translation bloopers can cost your organization in reputation, time and money. Keep in mind not everyone who speaks Spanish can translate. Free translation tools have come a long way, but if you want to avoid embarrassment (which translates to embarazo or pregnancy in Spanish) have someone who is fluent go over the text. Be on the look out for literal translations which could change the tone and/or message. Business Wire feels translation is such an important part of reaching the US Hispanic market we include it in our LatinoWire distribution.

3)      Remember to reach out to Hispanic media year round.

If the only time you target this group is during Hispanic heritage month then you are missing out on opportunities. Hispanic media is faring better than mainstream media. There are more than 800 US Spanish-language papers and they are interested in any news item that has the potential to impact the Hispanic community (positively or negatively). Year round you should share your story ideas on everything from awards and marketing campaigns to surveys, studies and trends.

For ideas on reaching out to the Hispanic community, check out the diverse companies using our LatinoWire service to reach over 1,200 Hispanic print and broadcast media outlets throughout the U.S.  Clients include: Coca Cola, Winn Dixie, Sprint and the Mayo Clinic, among others.


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