Hispanic Focused TV: Fad or Here to Stay?

Posted: Apr 22 2014

It’s an interesting time in Hispanic and Latino audience targeting. The Starz channels have just made news, they’ve shuffled content to draw in more African-American and Hispanic viewers. Their ‘Encore Drama’ channel is morphing into ‘Encore Black’, and ‘Encore Espanol’ is beefing up with additional Spanish-language offerings. 

And that’s not the only move in visual media these days. TV channels such a ‘Mundo Fox’, ‘MunTv’, ‘Fusion Tv’ etc. are making headlines with their new targeting of both English and Spanish language speaking Hispanics. It’s a Hispanic moment for television. The number of Hispanics is expected to explode in the U.S. over the next few decades, so it appears our media execs have heard the call and are gearing up to reflect this growth.

The real question however is: do Hispanics really want ‘different’ programming? As ‘Fusion TV’ found in its research as it was nearing launch - Hispanics don’t want to be marginalized into specific buckets of programming. In fact one of Fusion TV’s exec’s is quoted as saying [Hispanic millennials] ‘don’t want content that only speaks to them’. So for this reason Fusion scaled back it’s plan and is only ‘winking at Hispanics’.  

I wish them luck, as well as Rosario Dawson. She’s launched a plan to work with Lionsgate Entertainment on Hispanic programming for both the big and small screen. Her new endeavor is called ‘Pantelion Films’. She's not off to a bad start...at all.  A recent Pantelion film 'Instructions Not Included' got off to a great start a few months ago - becoming the highest grossing Spanish language film to ever be released in the U.S.

It’s an interesting world the media is targeting now, as suddenly the Hispanic market is gaining a lot of credibility. As a former media person, it’ll be really interesting to see which one of these various new endeavors makes it, and which fall by the wayside.

Your thoughts?

-Zee Diaz

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