New York -- When the most recent Census numbers came out, it backed up what Hispanic programmers have been saying for awhile -- that young Latinos are the fastest growing segment of the population.
"We've been forecasting this was going to happen," said Claudia Teran, executive vice president, business and legal affairs and deputy general counsel, Fox Networks Group.
"It was an emerging growth market and now it's a mature growth market," added Richard Buchanan, vice president and general manager of content services, Comcast Media Center.
Reaching the "American Modern Latino Image" was the main focus during the executive roundtable at B&C/Multichannel News' 10th Annual Hispanic TV Summit here Wednesday.
"It's the fastest growing segment of the population, who doesn't want to go after young Latinos in this country?" asked Diana Mogollón, GM, mun2.
"It's getting bigger, this demographic is getting stronger," said Judi Lopez, senior vice president of affiliate sales & marketing, nuvoTV. "They want to see themselves on television in a way that they can relate." Lopez echoed arguments made earlier in the day about the importance of showing something that is not stereotypical and that most are now English-speaking.
"That's very different than [what] companies may think," added Teran, who said that roughly 60% of the U.S. Hispanic population is now U.S.-born.
"Every time the census comes out, there's like this awakening of the market," said ESPN Deportes general manager Lino Garcia. "Every CEO is asking their CMO what is their Hispanic plan." Garcia cautioned against too much optimism however, saying that marketing towards Hispanics is still slow. He said Hispanic budgets still account for just 5% of the overall marketplace. "The reality is that the spending is not very proportional."
Besides being the fastest growing segment of the population, Buchanan noted that this group is also the quickest to adopt new media technologies. "It's getting to be ahead of the mainstream."