Trendy Tendencias: US & Mexico

Blog following and discussing new trends, specifically in the US and in Mexico.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Hispanic Marketing Case Study: Publix Sabor

Well, as I mentioned, I'm currently traveling. I'm actually on vacation and at "home" visiting my family in the US. I'm from Sarasota, FL, and growing up we did not have much of a Latin influence in my city. (We are a city on the Gulf of Mexico, the other side of the state from Miami.) So much has changed since I lived here. There are various special small Latin grocery stores, a REAL tortilleria, and a weekly spanish newspaper. I went to the stores and bank today and was amazed that I heard just as much Spanish being spoken as I did English. This is such a change from just 5 or 6 years ago!

A large grocery chain in Florida is Publix, and they have been planning & developing a new store style built to attract more latino customers for about 2 years...and it has finally launched: Publix Sabor. The differences in this store and other regular Publix stores includes: bilingual signs, large perishable departments including over 50 recipes for the deli department, store layout, and bilingual staff.

According to various articles I've read the "analysts" are betting against the stores' success, stating that other companies have tried it and miserably failed. (With the exception of HEB, which would up also moving into Mexico and becoming oner of the large supermarkets in a city that I lived in: Monterrey.)

My guess? I haven't seen the store, so it's kind of a tough call for me. I'm going to bet that it's mostly going to be a marketing game here. If they figure out the right way to approach the hispanic market while at the same time being an attractive place for "gringos" to shop...they'll do all right. But I really can't predict the future on this one. I hope it does well. I think it's kind of a cool concept, and it would be nice to have a company succeed so that others have someone to learn from. In the end, I think that this might represent a general shift that we will see over time...and someone has got to get it right sooner or later!

I'll be following their progress, and we'll try to revisit this Case in a few months.


At 4:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in Texas where we have HEB (which I absolutely love!). There's also a grocery chain called Fiesta that is marketed toward the Hispanic population. However I think the general view is that it's not doing well on the cross-over to attract "gringos" like you mentioned.

At 8:37 PM, Anonymous David Lopez said...

Today there's a lot web sites that sell mexican food and ingredients online, just check and you'll find mexican candy, salsas picantes, etc.
Mexican market is growing fast in the USA, and it's good that many companies now contract bilingual employees for their business.


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