Not only is the Procter & Gamble Co. brand one of the main sponsors of the 4-month-old Telemundo program, the show and Folgers' sponsorship are supported by retail shelf-talkers bearing the Folgers Hispanic ad theme, "Despiertan lo mejor en ti" ("Wake up the best in you"). Grocers also may get to host tapings of a daily show segment in which people tell viewers, "Buenos dias!"
Folgers' involvement in "Primera Hora" is part of an integrated marketing campaign-business as usual in the Hispanic market but rare on such a large-scale.
Hispanic ad agencies have plenty of experience in integrating a message across multiple marketing platforms, such as advertising, sampling and event promotion. But bringing these platforms to a national scale is a big challenge, since the Hispanic market lacks the depth and effectiveness of the general market's commmunications infrastructure.
"Think of all the [marketing] vehicles we take for granted in the general market and go down the list with an Hispanic agency. Ask them: who does couponing? Who does PR? .|.|. And PR's not as well developed in the Hispanic market because there aren't as many publicity outlets, like print vehicles," says Roger Sennott, general manager at Market Development, a research company specializing in the Hispanic market. "All those [marketing] tactics don't exist yet" in the Hispanic market nationally.
There's always been an element of integration in Hispanic marketing, observers say. Hispanic efforts traditionally have been more pressed than general-market efforts for a return on marketer investment. To generate this return, and to get the most out of their clients' sparse budgets, Hispanic agencies combined different communications into single programs.
That's one reason why the market traditionally has featured close tie-ins to events such as community festivals or concerts.
"Anytime you take money away from a core marketing plan and put it into a segment market, those dollars have to work harder and get a greater return on investment, or they go back," says Jesse Wilson, exec VP, San Jose & Associates, Chicago. "Necessity is the mother of invention."
But as marketers consider assembling larger-scale programs, they and their agencies have had to invent because of another necessity: the absence of a communications infrastructure.
"Many times we find ourselves setting up to do something for a client and having to invent it as we go along, because all the pieces aren't there," says Carl Kravetz, president of Cruz/Kravetz:Ideas, Los Angeles.
Mr. Kravetz remembers wanting to do an Hispanic mail drop in localized sections of Los Angeles in the mid '80s. At the time, the best vehicle to make the drop to all these areas was the Los Angeles Times circulation staff, but their home delivery routes wouldn't help him find Spanish-speaking households. So he told the circulation staff that he wanted his piece delivered to homes that didn't get the Times.
Since then, he notes, the Times has come up with its Nuestra Tiempo supplement to cover that market.
"Every week I get more information about FSI, direct marketing and promotion opportunities .|.|. but sometimes you have to improvise" to reach consumers, Mr. Kravetz says.
Companies trying to undertake database efforts in the Hispanic market have come across barriers trying to create viable mailing lists.
Some national database lists contain people in certain ZIP codes with Hispanic surnames. But Jorge Reynardus, a partner at a New York-based integrated marketing agency, felt that having a Hispanic surname didn't always mean the household was versed in Spanish.
And, doing mass drops in Hispanic ZIP codes wasn't terribly efficient.
His solution: look for people with Hispanic first names. Vidal, Reynardus & Moya has created a database of 6 million households names nationwide from existing sources for about the same cost as compiling lists for other targeted audiences.
"If you make an effort to name your child Jesus, even if your last name is Goldberg or Anderson, you seem to be making a commitment to give that child a Hispanic heritage," Mr. Reynardus says.
The infrastucture shortcomings also extend to the abilities of agencies, especially those in sales promotion, observers say.
According to Mr. Kravetz, there are "very few good practitioners" of Hispanic sales promotion. The reason, he says, is many of those at Hispanic agencies were originally trained in Mexico, where until recently almost all forms of promotions, such as coupons and sweepstakes, were illegal.
As a result, agency personnel are still learning how to create such programs. In addition, Hispanic consumers, especially the newer immigrants, have to be taught how these programs work.
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mail system is faulty and people aren't used to using the mail or the phone for anything besides talking to their family," says Eva May, managing director at Noble & Asociados, Irvine, Calif., which created the Folgers "Primera Hora" campaign.
To boost responses, Ms. May suggests marketers use coupons instead of sweepstakes or rebates.
"Immediate gratification is definitely the best way to go," she says, noting that coupon usage among Hispanics has grown dramatically over the last 10 years. "Every time there's immediate gratification, the rate of redemption is higher than sending something in."
"There's more of a [consumer] education process. It's not looking down on them, it's just education," agrees Dolores Kunda, an account supervisor at Leo Burnett USA, Chicago.
Observers expect Hispanic advertisers to undertake more integrated marketing programs in the Hispanic segment.
"It will grow, as vehicles appear and as marketers bring it over from the general market," Mr. Sennott says.M
Shelf-talkers in carnecerias urge consumers to "Wake up the best in you" with Folgers-and bring the coffee brand's sponsorship of "Primera Hora" to the store level.
Folgers' "Primera Hora" sponsorship includes live spots read by weatherman, Sol Sostre, and its Hispanic campaign commercials.