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One of the reasons that it’s so hard to interest Hispanics in joining a class action lawsuit is their cultural sense of destiny — that suffering is a natural parts of life. If a person was harmed by a drug side effect or dangerous equipment, it was their fate.
This point was one of many Hispanic marketing insights offered by Leslie Inzunza, a bilingual and bicultural expert in New York.
“Culture is a shared system of beliefs and behaviors passed from one generation to the next,” she says. “Latinos don’t respond the same way as other consumers, because their culture adds another layer of complexity. What makes ethnic marketing so tough is they swim in different waters.”
For example, Latinos in general are risk-averse, and shy away from being the first to try something they view as uncertain. There is a perception that any lawsuit involves risk and this keeps them from filing a claim or joining a class action.
Best ways to get through to Hispanics
To overcome this culture bias, Inzunza, speaking on an HB Litigation webinar, said the solution is to demonstrate that there are people in their group who have gone before them. For example, a website or ad can feature quotes from Latinos who have filed a claim.
The Hispanic market with 54 million people in the US is too big to ignore. Only half of them are foreign-born and many are citizens — but they view the world from three cultural vantage points:
- Learners are recent arrivals, and includes elderly people who don’t care to learn English, and remain learners for years. Only ⅕ of Hispanics are new immigrants.
- Straddlers are bilingual and bicultural, and are often referred to as “New Latinos.” Learners and straddlers have little or no experience with the US legal system.
- Navigators are more sophisticated, speak English, and are further away from their roots but still have a Hispanic cultural practice. “By appealing to their Hispanicism, you get their attention,” she said. Latinos have a pejorative word for them: Americanizar, or Americanized.
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