More than Machismo: Hispanic Men’s Magazine Market
Much like the general market, Hispanic men’s magazines and digital media properties run the gamut of subject matter, from general interest to urban interest, sports to automobiles.
One magazine that is not intended to be exclusively for men, but whose audience is largely male is New York’s Urban Latino. The monthly magazine has been around for over ten years and, as its name implies, covers topics that are of interest to the urban Latino community. “When we first started back in 1994, we were really just trying to get exposure for artists that we liked that we felt were not getting the attention they deserved,” says publisher Jorge Cano-Moreno. “I was and still am a big fan of Vibe, and initially set out to bring that model to the Hispanic community.”
And as the magazine has grown and aged, so has its audience, with its target audience being Hispanic males, 27-35. “A lot of our readers are second and third generation Latinos,” says new editor-in-chief Zeta Rivera. “So a lot of our content focuses on things that are relevant to more acculturated Hispanics, while still maintaining the home-country sensibilities of their parents and grandparents.” That is why they publish the magazine in English, says Rivera, although she adds that there is some Spanish thrown in there too, mirroring the way many second and third generation Latinos communicate with each other.
One way in which Urban Latino sets itself apart from its competitors is by publishing themed issues, such as a hip-hop issue. One thing they want to make clear however is that the magazine is not your typical “blinged-out” forum for rappers to show off their fancy necklaces. “We deal with topics on a more substantive level,” says Rivera. “Our next issue profiles Fidel Castro and his life, for instance. For so many younger Latinos, this is a familiar face, but so many people really don’t know anything about him.” The publication’s circulation is around 85,000 monthly, overwhelmingly subscription-based. Advertisers include Nissan, Land Rover, Pepsi, and Hennessy. Urban Latino is currently in the process of rolling-out an online edition of its magazine.
Catering to a more upscale audience, Hombre magazine targets successful Latin men aged 21-39. Its mission is to serve as a forum for successful Latin men by both profiling them and appealing to their lifestyle interests. The magazine brands itself as being “For Men of Passion,” and accordingly tries to include elements that its readership is passionate about, such as “futbol,” travel, food and, of course, beautiful women.
Hombre is bilingual, with the articles written in English and then summarized in Spanish. When asked from where the need for a magazine like Hombre comes, Robert Dominguez, editor at large, says, “Today, Hombre is the only magazine of its kind. There is a real need to address Latin men and their interests. There are publications in Spanish, but Hombre is the only bilingual publication in today's marketplace for Latin men.” Advertisers interested in reaching Hombre’s readers include Absolut, Fruit of the Loom, Harley Davidson, Jose Cuervo and Calvin Klein, among others.
Hombre’s distribution relies on subscriptions, newsstand sales, and distribution of promotional copies at events. “Sponsorship and participation in major events is an important focus of the magazine,” adds Dominguez.
Targeting a similar audience as Hombre, and covering more or less the same editorial terrain, Bello is a quarterly magazine with an audit-pending circulation of around 351,000 copies. Full page ads are available for $26,000. Another difference is that Bello is an English only magazine that attempts to capture some general market readership in addition to its Hispanic readership.
Its tagline is simply “Power, Culture and Success,” indicating the market segment that it is trying to appeal to. Each issue features editorial coverage of politics, art, fashion culture and international. Being a quarterly publication, the magazine tries to cover as much ground as possible, so it also reports on sports, real estate and technology.
Last year, Bello partnered with Time Warner Cable to promote the magazine with banner advertising on Time Warner's website, as well as on some of TWC's radio and television properties. Bello currently has a distribution arrangement with HEB stores. The magazine's ad-sales representatives are PanAmerican Communications in the Southeast and HMPM on the West Coast. Its main ad-category is automotive, with Mercury, Honda, BMW and Lexus all advertising.
Representing the highly popular auto category is Sobre Ruedas, the Spanish language monthly that distributes nationally as an insert and has a circulation of over 620,000 copies. The publication is inserted in newspapers nationally, including El Nuevo Herald, El Diario La Prensa, La Raza Chicago, La Opinion in L.A. and others. Editor Jaime Florez says his pub is different from some of the other Hispanic automotive magazines in that, “We’re a bit more oriented to the consumer than some of the other magazines that cater to tech-savvy auto enthusiasts. Our magazine is accessible to anyone with an interest in cars.”
Editorial Televisa has a host of men’s magazines tailored to the Hispanic market. Most of these are successful general market publications that have been adapted to serve a Latino readership. Maxim en Español, whose general market counterpart helped to redefine the modern men’s magazine, is also rather popular as a Spanish-language edition. Maxim en Español characterizes itself as “Irreverent, sensual, useful and spontaneous,” attributes which its readers would likely want to ascribe to themselves.” It deals with classic men’s interest topics like women, music, technology, sports, autos, etc. and tries to do so in a tongue-in-cheek manner.
The monthly magazine is written completely in Spanish, is distributed through subscriptions and newsstands, and has a circulation of 80,000. Interestingly, when the magazine first launched in Spanish, it had a single editorial team for the U.S., Central American, and South American markets. However, they found that the magazine was not resonating the way they thought it should be with their Latino readership.
Three editorial teams
For one thing, the idioms used by many U.S. and Central American Hispanics are quite different from those used in South America. Today, Maxim en Español has three separate editorial teams: One in Miami, handling the U.S. edition, One in Mexico handling Central America and the Northern Andes region; and one in South America providing content for the Argentina and Chilean markets.
Men’s Health en Español is another highly-popular title for both the general market and Spanish-language market. Its target readers are health-conscious males, 19-34 years of age. As its name suggests, much of the magazine’s editorial coverage is devoted to exercise, sports and healthy living, comprising 40% of the magazine’s coverage. The rest is devoted to sexuality and relationships, nutrition and weight control, work and stress issues and travel. The magazine claims to garner about five readers per copy.
ESPN Deportes la Revista is an important Editorial Televisa property with high brand loyalty. According to Miguel Chala, the magazine’s brand manager, 86% of the magazine’s readers do not read any magazine besides it. He also points out that the magazine, first published in August 2005, covers mainly sports of Hispanic interest such as Hispanic and European soccer teams, Dominican and Puerto Rican baseball. However, he says that it also covers general market sports such as NASCAR and football to help those who wish to learn more about sports popular with the general public. The magazine distributes about 50,000 copies in the U.S. and 20,000 in Puerto Rico.
Rival magazine Fox Sports en Español (750,000, monthly, Spanish), published by Cuatro Media is also quite a popular publication targeting the 18-34 male audience. Advertisers include VW, Johnnie Walker and Fruit of the Loom. The magazine is content-heavy and covers sports both on the field and in the boardroom. It is mostly distributed as an insert in Hispanic newspapers nationwide.
Also in the sports arena, and also mostly distributed as a newspaper insert, we have Sensacion Marketing’s products, Futbol Mundial (1 Million Circ., Monthly, Spanish) launched in 2002, and Beisbol Mundial (1 Million Circ., Monthly, Spanish), launched in 2005. Felix Sencion, President of Sensacion Marketing, says that there are a few things about his products that stand out from others in the market. “First, we were the first to market, launching Futbol Mundial in 2002. We also have the largest audited circulation, with a million-plus copies distributed of each product every month. Finally, we are thee first company in sports media to cross over from Spanish to English with our FMusa soccer magazine, distributed in USA Today.
Predominantly male readership
One interesting case is that of National Geographic en Español, which is not intended to be a men’s magazine, but whose readership is predominantly male. Chala asserts that the magazine is the most popular general interest magazine in Latin America. National Geographic en Español shares approximately 85% of its content with the general market edition and has the highest subscription price of any Spanish-language magazine distributed in the U.S., averaging $24.00 for a year’s subscription.
Overall, Hispanic men’s magazines mirror general market men’s magazines in scope and style. They cover a broad range of topics, and appeal to every sizable niche interest. One thing to look out for in the coming years, as the U.S. Hispanic population grows and becomes increasingly acculturated, is the arrival of more Hispanic magazines that cover topics of interest to Hispanics, but do so in English.
In addition to the host of print properties designed for Hispanic males like those cited above, there are a number of web destinations carved out just for men, too - no, not those destinations. Many of the aforementioned magazines have online extensions. ESPN Deportes has quite a sophisticated site, offering advertisers cutting-edge delivery methods, like pre-roll video, and channel sponsorships.
In a deal that is sure to put pressure on other online Hispanic sports websites, Fox Pan American Sports - which operates U.S.-based Fox Sports en Español and Fox Sports Latin America – penned a deal in December with MSN to create a content-rich online sports hub at www.foxsportsla.msn.com. The website will be customized to suit the sports preferences of the different visitors from the U.S., Mexico, and Latin America. The move is a departure from Fox Sports en Español’s previous approach of signing distribution deals with various Spanish-language portals. Now that they have consolidated editorial control over all of their content, they have decided to distribute it exclusively through the new website. Yahoo! en Español and Telemundo have also partnered in launching a Spanish-language sports site, http://Español.sports.yahoo.com.
In addition, some of the larger, Spanish-language websites have special channels that cater to men. Batanga has a channel called simply “Chicas,” featuring beautiful and scantily-clad women. It also has an auto channel.
AOL Latino does not have any channels aimed at the male libido, but does offer an auto channel, a sports channel, a soccer-specific channel, and a channel devoted to money and success.
Terra has a channel called “The Girls,” featuring photos of seductive women in limited clothing. Although there is no nudity, one must verify that he is an adult before entering…sources tell Portada. Terra also features a jokes channel, largely directed at men, and a recently launched women’s channel, directed specifically not at men.
So whether in the Hispanic print or online space, the options for men are myriad. Virtually every interest is represented, From Sports to street-life, to success. But the thread that binds virtually all of these properties is their inclusion of irresistibly sultry females, rendering the classic lyric particularly apt in summing up the Men’s magazine and online media market:
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