Here at the office we are huge fans of the NBA’s year round Hispanic campaign titled enebea’ (the Spanish language pronunciation of ‘NBA’). They recently launched a series of spots – airing on both English and Spanish language network TV- communicating how NBA Latino fans store up their energy specifically for the NBA season. The spots, titled “Guarda Tu Pasión” (“Save your Passion”), show how the NBA truly knows their market – the campaign is fresh, full of passion and terribly clever.

As big fans of this campaign, we were definitely intrigued with the recent Hispanic outreach the NFL rolled out. It definitely shows a clear investment in the U.S Hispanic market, but we’re surprised that their biggest effort is mainly during Hispanic Heritage Month. It would be fantastic to see it year round. e-ne-fel?

Some of the pretty neat major media plays they rolled out included:

(1)    Language. The word ‘de’ was on the teams’ official names: The rivalry between the Dolphins de Miami and Jets de Nueva York was broadcasted for the first time ever in Spanish on Telemundo, the second-largest Spanish-language content producer in the world. ESPN also aired the game in English, but had the names of the teams on the screen in Spanish.

(2)    Celebrities. The national anthem was sung by an all time Hispanic legend, Gloria Estefan: Also featured was Marc Anthony, together with Fergie of The Black Eye Peas, singing the national anthem, and Gloria Estefan introducing Enrique Iglesias for the special halftime performance.

(3)    Broadcasters. Broadcasters attempted their luck by saying a few words in Spanish – we nearly fell out of our chairs in shock when one of the broadcasters attempted to say the names of the teams in Spanish. What a great effort!

Efforts didn’t end there; perhaps it is their Miami location that lends a certain deeper understanding of the importance of the Hispanic audience, but the Dolphins joined forces with Univision Radio Miami to broadcast games in Spanish in an attempt to reach their Spanish-speaking fans. ESPN Deportes also got in on the action, launching its Fanatico Latino, an integrated marketing campaign to honor Latino sports fanatics in general.

You see, Hispanic fans are on the rise: According to Reuters, 25 million U.S. Hispanics watched the NFL regular-season games in 2008, with 64.4% of English-speaking Hispanics saying they watch football. Some just love the fanfare and atmosphere, and others really just love American football. And in Mexico, NFL fans have been growing steadily, as Kevin Baxter from the L.A Times reported this year.

So what are the implications of these new U.S Hispanic campaign efforts?  No matter the reason, it is clear that a passion for sports results in a massive consumption of sports-related goods, and it seems that the brands and sports truly committed to the U.S Hispanic market no longer wish to miss out on an ever-growing market with huge potential for profit.

GOOOOOOOOOOOL vs. Touchdown! perhaps? Maybe we should ask Andres Cantor to narrate a game. Take a look at how the game of chess has hired him in this Geico spot. It’s superb.

It does indeed look like Fanaticos Latinos are a force to be reckoned with.

SOURCE Boden PR/ Tiffany Barranco and Natalie Boden

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