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I’m not Mexican

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I say this not to exclude anyone, but to educate.

I am a Latina.  Born in the US, raised in the south.  The question back then was a simple “what are you” because apparently it was not self evident that I was a person, and the fact that I was neither white nor black was a little confusing.

I did not have the pleasure of meeting a Mexican until I was almost 20, which is also around the time that I first had “Mexican” food (tacos & such).

Since then I have had the honor and pleasure of working with countless numbers of Mexicans, have enjoyed vampiritos, learned a thing our two about the Mayan ancestry, have visited many destinations in Mexico, enjoyed some of the vast delicacies available throughout the different regions, and even met my husband (who’s not Mexican either) in Mexico.

My point? Businesses, if you want to speak to my pocketbook, dimelo en Cubano!  Just because you translated it and dropped a lime in it, does not make me your audience. 

I am not acclimated, I am an American. I am not bicultural, I am a Latina. I stand with my fellow Latin@s on issues of immigration and racism.  I do not watch Univision or Telemundo because it doesn’t speak to me, but wish there were more programming like HBO’s Epitaphios because it was great!

I tell you this because the trillion dollar market segment that you are salivating for is not a one size fits all.   Take a moment to learn that in Chicago for example, latino’s in Pilsen are predominately Mexican,  while you can find mostly Boriquas (Puerto Rican for the uninitiated) near Humboldt Park. There’s even a Colombian community, but it seems most of the Cubans got smart and relocated to better climate. 😉

The conversation amongst marketers is that the future is in personalization… how, if you continue to lump us together?

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About mzelma

Culturally ambidextrous renaissance woman. Mom, wife, daughter, entrepreneur, blogger, shiny and fabulous, just like home! Find out more at www.about.me/mzelma

4 responses »

  1. Great post, Elma! I completely agree and understand where you are coming from. Being America and Latina myself, people want to pigeonhole me as only Dominicana. Yes, I love my culture, but I also love HBO, speaking English, and being American. I’m multifaceted! Lol.

    Again, great post 🙂

    Reply
  2. LOVE this article, Elma! I could not agree with you more about marketers needing to educate themselves about Latinos (read: continue to do research even though the trillion dollar market stat stopped them in their tracks) and act accordingly/strategically. Usually brands are pretty thorough about doing market research and being strategic about the verbiage of their ads, so I’m still a little baffled (like you) that this same attention to detail (and seriousness) is not commonplace when trying to branch out to the Latino market instead of just general market.

    Reply

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