February 18, 2015
DALLAS, February 17, 2015 -- SMU Cox Latino Leadership Initiative (LLI) held its inaugural symposium on Friday, February 13, at the SMU Cox Collins Executive Education Center. The event highlighted “Engaging Latinos through Social Media,” and discussed the intersection of today’s information technology and demographic trends surrounding the growth of the Hispanic population.
“The primary messages from all the expert speakers at our symposium were that Latinos use social media even more than non-Hispanics, that the growth of their participation in these networks is rapidly continuing, and that they can be effectively engaged through these vehicles in specific ways,” said Anthony Herrera, Executive Director, Latino Leadership Initiative, SMU Cox School of Business.
Symposium speakers included:
Pete Lerma, Principal and Founder, Richards/Lerma Group
Jason Llorenz, Lecturer, Rutgers University
Christian Martinez, Head of Sales, Multicultural, Facebook
Daniel Monistere, SVP Client Services, Nielsen
The panel was moderated by Professor Miguel Quiñones, Department Chair and O. Paul Corley Distinguished Chair in Organizational Behavior, SMU Cox School of Business and LLI Academic Director.
A few of the panelists’ insights included:
- By 2060 one-third of the U.S. population will be Hispanic.
- Two-thirds of Latinos are “made in the USA” (U.S. born) and the demographic group trends toward youth (18-49 years old), who regard themselves as ambicultural – 100 percent American and 100 percent Latino.
- “The smartphone is the digital dashboard that runs Latino lives,” said Daniel Monistere with Nielsen. Seventy-eight percent of Latinos own a smart phone and use it more than non-Latinos (45 hours, 23 minutes per week).
- Engaging in social media with Latinos requires messages that resonate with their culture, optimizing for mobile and branding with video. Their culture is social, joyful, fun. “Mobile is king,” according to Christian Martinez, with Facebook. Hispanics spend 36 minutes daily on Facebook alone, and 80 percent prefer some Spanish content. They use Facebook to communicate with friends and family in the U.S. and in other countries, and are highly drawn to video.
- “Latinos have a deep connection to community and see social media as a tool for social change,” said Jason Llorenz, Rutgers lecturer. To engage with Hispanics you must focus on cultivating authentic voices, focus on meaningful communication and acknowledge Latino group complexity.
- According to Peter Lerma, principal at Richards/Lerma, Hispanics are leapfrogging the laptop to tablets.
LLI is a comprehensive undertaking designed to help meet the nation’s growing need for corporate leaders as the economy improves and national demographics evolve. The four pillars of LLI include:
- Individual Development for High-Potential Latino Managers
- Organizational Development to Build Multicultural Competence
- Business Insights through Latino Focused Research
- Latino Leadership Initiatives in Schools and Communities
“We’re at the leading edge of the demographic dynamic that is sweeping the country,” said Frank Lloyd, Associate Dean, Executive Education, SMU Cox Executive Education. “Our mission is to serve the business community. We would be remiss if we weren’t taking a leadership position in this.”
LLI corporate sponsors include AT&T, Aramark, Baylor Scott & White, Cash America, CBRE, EY, H&R Block, JCPenney, Kimberly-Clark, Merck, MoneyGram, Shell, State Farm and Walmart.
About SMU Cox Executive Education
SMU Cox Executive Education offers new, innovative and flexible programs – both open and custom – that provide a relevant and dynamic learning experience for professionals, managers, and executives. Programs provide skills development in areas such as management, leadership, sales and marketing, and accounting and finance. By developing these skills, managers are able to make better decisions, resulting in positive business results.
About SMU Cox
The Cox School of Business (cox.smu.edu), originally established in Dallas in 1920 on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, and was named in honor of benefactor Edwin L. Cox in 1978. SMU Cox offers a full range of highly-ranked undergraduate and graduate business education programs: BBA, Full-Time MBA, Fast Track MBA, Professional MBA (PMBA), Executive MBA (EMBA), JD/MBA, MA/MBA, Master of Science (MS) in Accounting, MS in Business Analytics, MS in Finance, MS in Management, MS in Sport Management, as well as Executive Education and multiple certificate programs. The school also offers a number of unique resources and activities for students, including the Business Leadership Center (BLC); the Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship; the Folsom Institute for Real Estate; the Maguire Energy Institute; the Global Leadership Program; and the Associate Board Executive Mentoring Program, as well as an international alumni network with chapters in more than 20 countries.