Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Hispanic Cultural Dimensions and Archetypes

In my latest readings, we cover the topics of cultural dimensions and archetypes.

As marketers, one of our goals is to connect with people on an emotional level. To do this, we obviously need to know more about our market. At the same time, we need to know what makes a person laugh and cry before we can begin to know what makes a person entertain or commit to a product/service. To make our products and services meaningful, we have to tap into the emotional drivers of a market.

The emotional drivers of the Hispanic market are built upon several cultural dimensions. For example:

* There is a Polychronic nature in the US Hispanic market as opposed to the monochronic nature of the non-Hispanic market. This simply means that the Hispanic market is more accepting of a certain level chaos where non-Hispanics tend to prefer one-on-one treatment and orderly processes.

* Hispanics prefer monomorphic leadership as opposed to the non-Hispanic preference of polymorphic leadership. This simply means that Hispanics tend to rely on one person whom they respect for advice in several different areas as opposed to non-Hispanics that tend to prefer leveraging many experts that are specialists.

* Hispanics value collectivism where non-Hispanic can be characterized as individualistic.

* Hispanics attribute causality to external entities where non-Hispanics are more likely to embrace the ideas of self determination.

Korzeny also highlighted several archetypes that help describe the attitudes, feelings and behaviors of the market. These archetypes can be observed in popular culture and quantified through in-depth ethnographic interviews and observations.

* Money - Hispanic culture doesn't value money as non-Hispanics do. Wealth for a Hispanic is often derived from enjoying life and enjoying the moment.

* Fatalism - Hispanic culture subjugates life's activities to fate and this manifests itself into the idea that one should live life for today and worry about tomorrow when it comes.

* Celebration of Life - Rooted in Catholicism, Hispanics celebrate the life that each morning provides (because at night when you go to sleep you do not know if you will wake in the morning).

* Guilt vs. Shame - Hispanics have a strong sense of existential guilt and represent an extreme in the guilt continuum.

* Parent Child Relationships - As mentioned in previous posts, there are roles within the family that are unique and defined.

* Machismo and Marianismo - This is the male/female relationship that is characterized by macho males and compliant females.

In understanding the cultural dimensions and cultural archetypes of the Hispanic market, marketers can better position campaigns to better meet the needs of this market. In my next post, we'll take a look at a few case studies that illustrate how cultural dimensions and archetypes can play a valuable role in the success of a campaign.

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