Well-Written Materials Can
Help You Reach Hispanics
Companies target the Hispanic market because of its considerable size and significant purchasing power.
But the marketing materials that are intended for the Hispanic frequently fail. This is typically due to the complexity of the language used in the pieces, failure to address important social and cultural attributes, and/or use of inappropriate graphics or illustrations. Lets look at what can be done in each area.
Language: Some companies may not recognize that the language used in many marketing pieces is frequently so complex that it is inappropriate for most markets. Many passages are written at high educational levels employing esoteric industry jargon.
When such language is then translated into Spanish, the resulting piece is often appropriate only for a small segment of the broad Hispanic populationnamely, the privileged Hispanic with a well-defined understanding of insurance principles.
This is unfortunate, because Hispanics in the larger segment of the market tend to have only limited understanding of insurance principles. Therefore, even if rendered correctly, such translations fall on silent ears. The insurer loses a chance to reach the broader market, and the individuals in that market lose a chance to consider and perhaps purchase the products of that insurer.
To their credit, some insurers have begun to address this deficiency. However, some of these efforts may backfire, if the companies select translators with inadequate skill.
They need to look for professionals who have the background and expertise that demonstrate they can interpret insurance subject matter into succinct, comprehensible Spanish. This is true even when the tone and syntax of original English is appropriate for the intended audience.
Cultural characteristics: Marketing pieces that target the average Hispanic must speak to important social and cultural attributes. Examples include the Hispanics perception of environmental events, significance of progeny, time orientation and collectivism.