Deeper demographics: Studies of Latinos are on the rise

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Hispanic research has become a hot topic lately as Nielsen's methodology is attacked for its counting of Latino TV viewers, but a quieter Hispanic research movement is starting to fill the gaps in syndicated research in order to help marketers better target Hispanic consumers.

Universal McCann's ongoing global research study, Media in Mind, is adding a U.S. Hispanic version, working with Simmons Market Research Bureau, with data out in January 2005.

"It'll be the first time a daily life study on Hispanics has ever been done, looking at overall media attention levels, daily media routines, and moods, measured every half hour for a week," said Jim Kite, Universal McCann's exec VP global research director.

shifting market

It comes as Creative Artists Agency, after buying youth forecaster Youth Intelligence last year, put its first Latino Intelligence annual study of 14-to-24-year-olds into the field in July, with data due in October 2004.

The youth market isn't just a big chunk of the population-one in five Hispanics compared to 13% of non-Hispanics-but is also a part of a shift underway from Spanish-dominant immigrants to more U.S.-born Hispanics.

"No one knows what happens when Latinos are U.S. born," said Christy Haubegger, CAA's Hispanic market expert. The study "is a window into the important youth market now, and at the same time a snapshot of the next Hispanic market. We're going to have to move from marketing in Spanish to marketing to Hispanics."

She said the study, backed by Hispanic agencies and media, will include 1,000 phone interviews, focus groups and meetings with insiders like DJs and stylists. To give a flavor of the study, she said questions could include "Tell me three things you've done on your cell phone this week."

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