Maximizing Your Bicultural Skills

By Ramona Ortega
Mi Dinero Mi Futuro

In case you haven’t heard chica, Latinos are the new hot market! According to the leading consumer research group Nielsen, “Hispanic women are a key growth engine of the U.S. female population and are expected to become 30 percent of the total female population by 2060.” Nielsen is appropriately calling this demographic change the “Latina Power Shift.” This is great news for Latinas majoring in business and marketing, particularly those of you who are bilingual and have a foot in both worlds. Latina identity is notoriously complex. We come from many regions and have different cultural nuances, but one thing is clear: despite our assimilation, our cultural identity is just as important today as it was to previous generations.

Knowing how to navigate between Latino and mainstream culture is a skill in high demand.

Consumer brands are very aware of the trillion-dollar Latino market and they are making sure they are speaking to those consumers both literally and figuratively. The big Fortune 500 brands each have specific “Hispanic” marketing campaigns. For instance, brands will team up with influential Latinos or Hispanic programs to make sure they are engaging with the Latino market. Mostly, these are social media campaigns that leverage Latinos’ dominance in the blogosphere.

If you are looking to become a career-savvy Latina and take advantage of the Latino consumer explosion, here are the top 10 things you should be doing now:

  1. Do your research. Create sophisticated keyword searches to identify companies that have launched or about to launch Latino or Hispanic initiatives or campaigns and utilize the numerous professional networking sites to connect with potential employers in these companies.
  2. Read Hispanic-focused business magazines to stay informed about business trends. This is a great way to impress a potential employer in an interview.
  3. Become proficient in reading and writing in both English and Spanish. Two is always better than one!
  4. Update your professional networking profiles with words like “cultural ambassador” and make sure to follow Latino-focused brands and companies.
  5. Identify the target job title you desire and study the social profiles of those with that title. Take note of their skill set and the types of positions they previously held.
  6. Create a social media footprint that identifies you as a social influencer. This should be a professional social media identity, so keep it clean. Creating a blog based on your area of expertise is the best way to generate followers.
  7. Cultivate strong community ties through memberships in Latino associations and organizations. Having a deep network will convince employers that you have the ability to penetrate the Latino market.
  8. Be sure to know the industry buzzwords – so you can sell yourself in an interview.
  9. If you are not a business or marketing major, take some online courses in these areas to become familiar with business concepts and strategies.
  10. Keep your eye out for any potential opportunity. Oftentimes, the best opportunities are ones that you create.
  11. LatinaLista Editor’s Note: The author was compensated by University of Phoenix for this blog, but all thoughts and opinions are her own.

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