The Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation is co-sponsoring a free seminar on attracting the Hispanic market in September at the International Boatbuilders’ Exhibition & Conference in Louisville, Ky.

“Engaging the Hispanic Audience: Insights to Actions” is also sponsored by Lopez Negrete Communications, the Houston-based marketing firm that the RBFF hired to develop a new five-year Hispanic outreach plan for the foundation.

Soundings Trade Only is also co-sponsoring the seminar, which will be held Sept. 18 from 10:30 a.m. to noon in Room C-109 of the Kentucky Exposition Center.

The demographic shift under way in the United States and an exploding Hispanic population will have a profound effect on the boating and fishing industries, RBFF president and CEO Frank Peterson said. Companies need to begin crafting a successful strategy to tap the Hispanic market. The Hispanic population, now at 50.5 million, is expected to reach 67 million by 2020.

“I hope to have this part of the industry have a better understanding beyond demographics of what this market looks like,” Peterson said of the seminar. “We need to be culturally relevant to this audience. We need to break down barriers due to a lack of cultural insight, and I hope this starts the process.”

The RBFF and Lopez Negrete will provide information at the session that companies can use in their marketing and communications efforts. The session will be led by Gerry Loredo, director of business analytics, and Ed Cantú, director of consumer insights and planning, for Lopez Negrete.

The agency, which specializes in marketing to the Hispanic market, has developed marketing strategies for Walmart, Verizon, 7 Up, Sonic and Bank of America.

Lou Sandoval, co-founder/co-owner of Karma Yacht Sales in Chicago and a member of the Recreational Boating Leadership Council, will offer his insight at the seminar.

“This group feels empowered because of their size,” Peterson said. “They love the American culture, but they also love their culture, and that has ramifications to our industry. It goes beyond just translating something into Spanish.”

The RBFF’s five-year plan will focus on a multichannel outreach encompassing digital, social and traditional media, a retail point-of-sale strategy and engagement with state agencies. The RBFF will pilot the program in Florida and Texas, which have a significant number of Hispanic consumers.

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