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E-mail marketing to Hispanics: Four simple steps

According to Forrester Research, 80% of the more than 20 million U.S. Hispanics online today use e-mail, and a recent survey by Mintel Comperemedia showed that Hispanics welcome e-mail promotions more times per month than non-Hispanics (11 times vs. 7.4 times). Companies that want to connect with Hispanic consumers, or get more from their existing e-mail program, should consider targeting e-mail campaigns to U.S. Hispanics.

But how do you get started crafting targeted e-mail campaigns to reach the Hispanic market? Do all of the e-mails have to be in Spanish? What messages and promotions should the e-mails offer? When, and how often, should you send the e-mails?

E-mail marketing to a Hispanic audience can be easy, if you follow a few simple strategies.

Before you send your very first e-mail, you need to identify e-mail addresses in your target audience: US Hispanics. Use behavioral targeting and information gathered via registration paths or online forms to figure out which of your site visitors are likely Hispanic. But don’t forget to take the extra step and understand if the visitor will be most receptive to Spanish or English e-mails. Self-identification is useful, so when capturing e-mail addresses via online forms or in shopping carts (always get opt-in permission, of course), consider asking a question or two to identify these members and their language preferences.

Next, make sure the subject lines and body text contain relevant offers and cultural messages that speak to Hispanics. Spanish language e-mails are effective, but many US Hispanics are bilingual or English-dominant, so it’s important to also test English e-mails with an engaging cultural message. In either language, if you don’t have the resources on staff, contract a copywriter to write your ad copy. Then, test to identify if a Spanish language or an English, Hispanic-focused version of your existing content works better among Hispanic members. And, remember that the normal e-mail rules apply: you have limited real estate and time, so make it snappy. Get to the point of your communication quickly and state it clearly.

Then, remember that when you send your e-mails can be as important as what you say in them. Use simple A/B testing to figure out if you get higher open rates by sending a follow-up, promotional e-mail to a US Hispanic-identified site visitor two hours after their visit, or 24 hours. You can also use testing to figure out what time of day or day of the week delivers the highest open rates — it varies for every brand and customer segment.

Reaching Hispanics via e-mail doesn’t have to be hard, especially because they are highly receptive to e-mail marketing. If you aren’t reaching out to Hispanics with your e-mail marketing campaigns, you’re missing out on a significant opportunity to connect with this valuable audience.

Alicia Morga is CEO of Consorte Media

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