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How to Engage Multicultural Millennials: From Those Who Know and Love Them Best (Hint: Millennials!)

As the father of billennial, bicultural teenagers, I know acutely well that young multicultural consumers are transforming the media industry, and the notion of celebrity as we know it. Every day, grassroots creators are capitalizing on the capitalism of new media – the ability to make a living and a name for themselves through social media and YouTube. With Hispanics very much at the forefront of digital video consumption and social media engagement, we felt it was important to shine a light on the young Hispanic creators blazing new trails in this space at this year’s Leading the Change marketing forum. 

We hosted two sessions designed to capture the voices of young Latino talent. The first featured Joanna Hausmann, a writer/producer/performer from Univision’s English-language billennial content network, Flama, and her “5 Rules for Engaging ‘Millennials.'” The second was a panel with three creators: musician Megan Nicole (@MeganNicole), actor/comedian Eric Ochoa (@SupereeeGO) and beauty/fashion vlogger Alejandra Rodriguez-Ayala (@StyledByAle), moderated by Univision Creator Network and Flama’s Steven Benanav. With a combined video viewership of over a billion and growing, we thought marketers might want to take note of their secrets for engaging everyone’s favorite demo: Millennials.

Some noteworthy takeaways:

1)  Authenticity means embracing what you know, and recognizing what you don’t.  Hausmann shared that, “within the individual lies the universal.” Don’t just assume that you need to universalize the accent in your Spanish voiceover, or steer clear of particular cultural nuances in your creative; in fact, embracing those nuances that are truly authentic will help you gain credibility with a cohort that is highly inclusive and accepting of differences. “Specificity,” she shared, “drives authenticity.”

2)  Stop using the word “Millennials”: Clearly, I’ve broken that rule about five times already in this post, but Hausmann made the point that millennials – er, young Americans – don’t think of themselves in marketing speak. Remember that when communicating with them. “I like to call them… my people,” she said. 

3)  Humor is a universal language.  Young video viewers love to laugh, and comedy can take many forms in viral videos. Imperfection, parody, randomness – all of these characteristics will allow young consumers to relate better to your content. 

4) Creators give brands credibility.  “When you love a brand, you get to deliver a message in an organic way,” Rodriguez-Ayala said. Plus, brands should recognize that digital creators have an audience that views them as friends and is paying attention to the products they use. As Megan Nicole stated, “we have a direct connection and communication with our fans,” resulting in a powerful bond of trust.

5) Recognize that Cultural Influence Matters:  Second- and third-generation Latinos still value the culture of their forebears, meaning that when you nod to what feels familiar to them – their language, their traditions – they will embrace your messaging. As Ochoa said, “Creating content about my Hispanic identity feels like ‘home.’” 

Is your brand tapping into digital creators?  Share your best practices with us: @hispanic411 on Twitter.


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