Target Taps into 'Untranslatable' Moments for US Hispanic Campaign - eMarketer
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Target Taps into 'Untranslatable' Moments for US Hispanic Campaign

November 18, 2015

Rick Gomez
Senior Vice President, Marketing

Discount department store chain Target recognizes that US Hispanic shoppers are an increasing portion of its customer base. Earlier this year, the company launched #SinTraducción (“without translation”), its first-ever ad campaign aimed solely at US Hispanics. Rick Gomez, the retailer’s senior vice president of marketing, spoke with eMarketer’s Alison McCarthy about #SinTraducción, what was learned from the campaign and what makes US Hispanic shoppers unique.

eMarketer: #SinTraducción was Target’s first campaign focused solely on Hispanic customers. What was the thinking behind the campaign?

Rick Gomez: The US population is more diverse than ever. Census data shows that Hispanics now account for one in six people living in the US. Based on this, and the fact that we know that our guests are also increasingly Hispanic, Target has been focused on the Hispanic consumer for several years. In March 2015, we launched #SinTraducción—or “without translation”—a yearlong campaign that celebrates the untranslatable moments in our Hispanic guests’ lives.

There are words and experiences in the Spanish language and culture that have no direct English translation, making them unique to our Hispanic guests. #SinTraducción celebrates some of those untranslatable terms, feelings and sentiments and helps our Hispanic guests see Target in a new light through their own traditions and experiences.

eMarketer: What did you learn from the campaign that will likely influence future campaigns directed at US Hispanics?

Gomez: So far this year, we love the engagement we’re seeing with our guests on the #SinTraducción campaign. We’ve seen the conversation spark in social media, where guests are sharing their experiences and the untranslatable words used in their own families.

“It’s important for us to celebrate our Hispanic guests’ modern mindset and progressive values: They are paving the path forward, while still preserving their culture.”

It’s important for us to celebrate our Hispanic guests’ modern mindset and progressive values: They are paving the path forward, while still preserving their culture. And because of this, it’s important to tailor Target’s guest experience—from the products we stock on our shelves to the voices that we use in our marketing to the connections that we make across our digital platforms and social media.

eMarketer: What role does digital play in Target’s efforts to reach US Hispanics?

Gomez: Digital media efforts are critical to connect with our Hispanic guest, who overindexes on social media and mobile and enjoys sharing with friends and family. We know that our US Hispanic guests overindex in all of their digital media consumption and particularly in mobile. This consumer is always online and uses mobile as their primary, and sometimes only, device.

We consider these insights across all of our marketing campaigns and channels as we’re developing the right media mix to reach our Hispanic guests. For example, when we rolled out #SinTraducción earlier this year, we led with digital, mobile and social, because we knew [these channels are where] this guest would best engage with Target.

#SinTraducción is a social campaign by nature—it allows Target to establish a connection with our guests in their daily media environments where they seek inspiration and cultural content.

eMarketer: Millennials are obviously an important consumer group for Target. Are there certain characteristics that stand out among Hispanic millennials compared with millennials in general?

Gomez: Target’s consumer base is increasingly millennial and they don’t want to just buy—they want to buy into something. They want brands that share their values. Our Hispanic millennial guests amplify these trends.

“Target’s consumer base is increasingly millennial and they don’t want to just buy—they want to buy into something.”

We see our Hispanic guests living in a 200% reality—100% Hispanic and 100% American. Because they fluidly navigate between two cultures, there is a strong cultural duality that influences everything they do.

eMarketer: Is Target finding big differences in shopping patterns among Hispanics in different regions, or in suburbs vs. cities?

Gomez: We recognize how diverse the Hispanic audience is and that shopping preferences may vary based on a number of factors, including where they live, their cultural experiences, country of origin, style, personal taste and language, just to name a few. For that reason, we offer an expanded merchandise assortment and stock our shelves to reflect the community. For example, our Los Angeles stores may carry different brands and products than our Miami stores.

eMarketer: What is Target’s plan to connect with US Hispanic shoppers during the upcoming holiday season?

Gomez: This holiday season our goal is to ensure our broader marketing efforts resonate with all guests. In addition to integrating diverse and cultural insights into the campaign, we will have Spanish-language broadcast spots and social media content for the #SinTraducción campaign to deepen a cultural connection.

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