Every year we try to predict what’s ahead, focusing on surprises and unexpected changes. However, there is more value in being able to prepare for what is obviously coming.

Below the 5 predictable, almost boring Hispanic marketing trends to watch for this year:

1. Companies that are investing in Hispanic marketing initiatives will increase their budgets. Their competitors will take notice.

You put your money where money is made. Companies that have traditionally invested in Hispanic marketing, like automotive, telecom and many CPG categories, will stay the course.

More timid companies in the same categories will finally jump in.

2. Political marketing heats up

Political pundits from both sides of the aisle are endlessly talking about the urgent need to capture the Hispanic vote.

With one-third of Senate seats to be contested in November, we’ll see a[pullquote align=”right”]There is a lot of value in being able to prepare for what is obviously coming.[/pullquote] significant increase in political marketing initiatives targeting Latinos. Interestingly, while only about 1 in 3 voters speaks Spanish, we’ll see a disproportionate amount of Latino  marketing initiatives in Spanish that will crowd the media and make it a tad harder (and more expensive) for traditional brands to get airtime.

3. Integrated campaigns will be launched during the World Cup

Ah, the panacea for Hispanic Advertising agencies is back!

This year, however, we will see more non-traditional campaigns, creative sponsorship activations and heavy usage of digital marketing and social media to reach the market.

Clients should challenge their agencies and Hispanic marketing consultants to come up with creative ways to maximize media investments during the Cup.

This year also we should see the “SuperBowlizing” of the Final match. It’s very unlikely that Mexico will survive for too long, but most Hispanics will be very interested in the Final – particularly if it’s a face off of the two Latin American favorites Argentina and Brazil.

The Final will bring very high ratings… and smart advertisers will make their Hispanic commercials the command some of the attention by creating crafting unique creative for the even and promoting the pieces beforehand.

4. Hispanic Location-based marketing initiatives and shopping apps will grown

For years we’ve known that Hispanics over-index in usage of mobile phone. But always the bulk of this usage has been with low-end devices.

With plummeting prices in smart phones and tablets, now there’s a critical mass of users that can take advantage of apps and other location-based marketing programs. Traditional brands will enter the space in force, led by retailers, restaurants and, of course, beer.

5. Consolidation of niche, hyper-targeted media:

Last year we saw the Univision monolith begin to crumble. This is the biggest shift in the history of US Hispanic media. This year the fragmentation will continue.

There are three key forces driving this trend.

First, we’re now living in a time-shifted, multi-screen world which affects Hispanics and non-Hispanics alike.

Second, many small segments within the Hispanic market are reaching critical mass which makes them profitable as target market.

And third, changes in technology are lowering the barriers of entry to create Hispanic media properties. This includes micro-publications, targeted to small geographic areas or groups of interest, as well as digital media (both written and audiovisual). We’ll also see the emergence of alternative radio formats and talk radio.

All these changes will start an irreversible change in how brands reach Hispanics.

Of course, Univision can see this as well. We’ll continue to see how the media giant will continue to launch new initiatives and joint ventures, designed to fend-off competitors and stay in front of the market changes.

2014 will be a banner year for the Hispanic market. Brands will make a lot of money in very efficient ways. And Hispanic consumers will feel that they truly matter.

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