Brewers Tap Hispanic Consumers

Industry proposes a toast

American brewers are directing their attention to a demographic that they hope will be the answer to a third consecutive year of declining sales volume. MillerCoors, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Heineken, and others are creating marketing campaigns that captivate the United States’ growing Hispanic population with an authentic voice and a sponsorship or two.

The recession has not been good to brewers. The importance of Hispanic consumers of legal drinking age comes to the fore as unrelenting unemployment shrinks the purchasing power of the industry’s key demographic, men ages 21 to 34. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Hispanics will represent 23 percent of the U.S. population of legal drinking age by 2030.

The major players in the U.S. beer market are employing a broad strategy for attracting the sought-after demographic. MillerCoors plans to target the Hispanic demographic with bilingual labeling on its Coors Light and Miller Lite brands, while sweetening the pot by sponsoring a Mexican soccer league. Anheuser’s Bud Light and Budweiser brands are hoping to receive a boost from increased spending on Spanish-language advertising and a sponsorship of Cuban-American rapper Pitbull’s upcoming tour. Heineken is reimagining its current campaign for marketing Tecate, a more budget-friendly imported Mexican brand, in the hopes of attracting second and third generation Mexican Americans. Heineken is also sponsoring three weeks of live concerts, exhibits, and film screenings featuring Latino artists in New York.