Hispanics in the U.S., with around 55 million people total, comprise about 17 percent of the general population, and are the largest ethnic minority in the country. As consumers, this populace is a powerful and growing presence. Terry College’s Selig Center for Economic Growth estimated that U.S Hispanics would account for $1.3 trillion of consumer spending in 2015, and predicted that number would reach $1.7 trillion by 2020.
One would think that such a robust-spending demographic would be well taken care of by brands, but the business intelligence firm Geoscape finds that often this demographic is underserved.
The Miami-based company is dedicated to providing data and analytics systems centered around the U.S Hispanic population along with other “new mainstream consumers,” as CEO and Founder of Geoscape Cesar Melgoza told Street Fight. This includes consumers from various culture backgrounds, as well as age-based shoppers like millennials, and also the LGBTQ community.
Today, the company is unveiling AudienTivity, a digital audience targeting platform that looks to enable brands to reach individual consumers and businesses through their internet-connected devices. It’s a significant development for the company and its clients, which Melgoza says include a wide range of brands including Nestle, Allstate, and Comcast.
Geoscape’s clients have been using the company’s data, namely its culture-coded cookie-based technology, to learn where consumers of various ethnicities and lifestyles are located. The information enables them to build smarter location-based marketing campaigns and also to know which ethnic products to stock locally. As Melgoza explained, a global brand like Nestle has certain products that may be sold prevalently in other countries, but not necessarily in local U.S stores; by learning that people originally from such countries populate a certain neighborhood, it can inform local partner retailers to shelve that product. Now, with AudienTivity, brands can now take Geoscape’s intelligence to another level: the connected screen, be it a home computer, laptop, or mobile device.
“With AudienTivity, we can take our own consumer database and perform segmentation on that database, defining people by age, language preference, lifestyle behavior, and [other key distinguishing attributes] to create a prospect list,” said Melgoza. “We then upload that list into our system [and to] a variety of ad networks, so they may place display ads where [those consumers] browse.”
The platform taps a user’s IP address, detectable on both a stationary computer or mobile device so long as it’s Internet-enabled. Ninety-four percent of all digital ad networks currently use Geoscape’s CultureCode technology, and can now use AudienTivity, Melgoza said. Ideally the new platform will encourage brands to deliver relevant digital marketing campaigns to these new mainstream consumers that are largely made up of minorities.
That almost all digital ad networks use Geoscape shows that there’s a strong commitment to knowing the cultural associations of consumers, but it’s up to the brands to actually deliver on this commitment and cater to diverse demographics. Often, Melgoza says, brands don’t realize that the so-called minority person will end up driving a majority of their revenue.
“One of the most alarming phenomena is that a very large number of marketers in major organizations do not realize the majority of their future growth will come from these segments,” said Melgoza, “If you measure their consumption over a lifetime, the average U.S Hispanic household will spend $400,000 more than a non-Hispanic white household, while Asians will spend about twice that amount.”
Who do Hispanics and Asians, for instance, in the U.S shop more? The reasons are numerous and complex, but one thing to factor with the U.S Hispanic population, is that the median age is 27, Melgoza said, adding that the median age of the U.S white consumer is 41.
“Non-Hispanic white households are also smaller [on average] than Hispanic households and have more empty nesters, whereas Hispanic households may not only be larger but also [include] a few generations.”
Nicole Spector is a Street Fight contributor.