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AHAA/CMC


Key Messages:
AHAA: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing is rebranding itself under a new name: Culture Marketing Council: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing (CMC).
• This rebranding is a natural evolution from our founding name, Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies, to AHAA: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing and now Culture Marketing Council: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing.
• As the marketplace changes, we will continue to take the lead role in elevating the quality and effectiveness of U.S. marketing by harnessing the power of cultural expertise—driven by the Hispanic segment— and impact to drive business results.
• The CMC will retain the same structure and continue its thought leadership in cultural marketing across its education and research platforms with emphasis on Hispanic marketing expertise.

Why does AHAA feel the need to change its name?
Marketers must employ a broader approach beyond language, which was the norm 10-20 years ago. Today, it is all about culture which encompasses language, idiosyncrasies, lifestyle and behaviors. That’s why AHAA is rebranding as the Culture Marketing Council: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing, which embraces the next generation of cultural marketing specialists and influences not only its members but also a broader ‘general market’ or mainstream America.

Why now?
We are simply evolving with a changing industry, rebranding AHAA with an identity that is more inclusive and reflective of the dynamic marketplace of today and tomorrow. In its 22-year trajectory, AHAA has grown with the ever-changing demographics and marketing environment—from an organization that was founded exclusively to represent Hispanic advertising agencies to a broader coalition representing all marketing disciplines, including agencies, content creators, research companies, consultants and more. This rebrand as CMC reflects the forward evolution of a new American mainstream – one fueled by multicultural ethnicities and the dynamic state of the Hispanic consumer.

Is AHAA downplaying its commitment to Hispanic marketing?
Absolutely not. That’s why it was imperative to keep “The Voice of Hispanic Marketing” in our name. The Hispanic segment is leading cultural trends within the American mainstream, and as such, it is also leading and innovating cultural strategies within the overall marketing industry. CMC will remain committed to elevating and showcasing the power of culturally segmented marketing with Hispanic at its core. Our research and education platforms will continue educating corporations on the value of including cultural marketing strategies provided by marketers with deep cultural expertise. In this way, our Hispanic-focused insights can be shared across all culture experts in every marketing discipline.

What was the process that got us here?
This name change was a result of 18 to 24 months of work, which included a series of listening sessions with our members. The overwhelming feedback was that there was a need to elevate cultural expertise beyond language and ethnicity and ensure brands are hiring marketing specialists with deep understanding of the cultural insights, behaviors and nuances. As Norma Orci once said, “In order to have the Hispanic share of pocket, you must have the share of heart.” To get to the share of heart, you must address and include culture. As Hispanic marketers, we will lead the charge on demonstrating the value of culture marketing specialists and marketing strategies rooted in culture as the strategic imperative.

How will the CMC include, embrace and advocate for culture? Will this include African-American, Asian-American, LGBTQ, etc.?
Research has shown that culturally-driven strategies targeted to the appropriate segments
create more meaningful engagement leading to increased ROI. Using specialists that have the
expertise to leverage cultural insights – and thus ensure campaigns resonate, engage and spur action among multicultural audiences – is the gold standard for marketing. In a world where specialists are celebrated in every aspect of life, CMC reclaims this value to the thousands of marketing professionals
with cultural expertise. As Hispanic leaders, we have the opportunity to share our strategic insights with other cultural marketers across various spectrums. We anticipate strengthening our relationships and partnerships with other like-minded organizations that also value and elevate the role of cultural specialists.

What are the changes we can expect as an organization?
We might have a new logo but our commitment to cultural specialists and elevating the power of Hispanic marketing to corporate revenue growth remain the same. We will continue moving forward with business-building initiatives like the Directory, the Job Center which connects cultural specialists with companies needing our trusted expertise, educational member-only and industry-wide webinars, and our annual conference. In addition, we have an exciting new study which will be unveiled this spring which focuses on consumer digital behavior through a cultural lens.

How does this affect my membership?
There will be no immediate changes to your membership or membership pricing because of this rebranding, however with a broader platform of cultural specialization and new or strengthened partnerships with other organizations, we will continue enhancing the benefits to members and continue increasing the value of membership. You can expect CMC to deliver the same insight-driven data that helps you not only grow your business but also provide valuable research and trends to your clients.

How will the annual conference be different this year?
Taking place in Los Angeles on June 4-6, the CMC Annual Conference will continue exploring the hottest themes and trends in the marketing industry with talks and presentations by top newsmakers and forward-thinking marketers – all through the pivotal lens of culture. We also remain committed to demonstrating the power of the Hispanic consumer, showcasing Hispanic creativity and underscoring the solid link between cultural marketing strategies and ROI.

How can my organization and I become more involved with the CMC?
There are many ways to become more involved with the CMC – big and small. You can interact with us on our LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter pages (our new Twitter handle is @cmchispanic), check out our Smart Brief, use our Directory as a business-building tool, attend our webinars and conferences, post job openings in our Job Center or simply give us any feedback on any of our initiatives. We are always an email message away at info@ahaa.org. If you are looking for a bigger commitment, we have openings in several of our committees:

• Annual Conference – help us plan by joining our brainstorms, suggesting the speakers you want to hear from and identifying the most pressing topics for our industry.
• Awards – help us nominate contenders for the Marketer of the Year, the Rising Stars of our industry as well as Hall of Fame inductees and be privy to all the other multicultural awards, such as HAPE and USH Idea.
• Research – we are always looking for new data and insights to help you grow your business. What topics would be most valuable to you? And you don’t have to be part of the committee to suggest research studies! An email recently went out asking for your feedback – please drop us an email with your thoughts and ideas!