La Comunidad Is Best Buy’s Latino Choice

ATLANTA Best Buy has selected la comunidad to handle Hispanic marketing, the agency said.

The account win, against The Vidal Partnership in New York and del Rivero Messianu DDB in Coral Gables, Fla., is the Miami shop’s fifth this year. Led by agency president Gary Bassell and creative director Jose Molla, the shop has added Citibank, Volkswagen Latin America, Subway and Animal Planet to its client roster.

Rick Conkey, senior advertising executive at Best Buy, said la comunidad presented “provocative creative that emerged from insightful research and strategic planning” to win the estimated $6 million account. Work from la comunidad will mark the retailer’s first dedicated effort in the Hispanic market.

“This is a target that the [retail] category hasn’t been speaking to,” said Bassell. Previous efforts were limited to translations of English ads created in-house at Best Buy’s Minneapolis headquarters.

As a result, the agency conducted its own research, visiting stores in Hispanic markets. “There’s much less affinity [among Hispanics] towards repeat purchases and upgrading tech at home,” Bassell said.

Bassell said Hispanic consumer tend to make group decisions when buying and using personal computers, televisions and other electronics, as opposed to the general market’s buyer, which he described as male, 40-plus and knowledgeable about new products.

“There’s lots of latent interest [among Hispanics], but we can’t just show the products—we have to overcome the threshold fears,” said Bassell.

A set of promotional campaigns will break later this year, with a major Hispanic image campaign to follow in early 2004. This will include radio, television, outdoor and some print and guerrilla marketing.