Research: New insights on how mobile marketing can engage Hispanic movie-goers

What: A new study shows how Hispanics usually choose what films to watch, when to go to a theater and how do they prefer to purchase movie tickets.
Why is it important: U.S.-based Hispanics are interested in using social media and mobile phones for movie discovery and ticket purchasing, but the movie industry must provide easier access and employ better marketing tactics to engage them.

Despite the fact that Hispanics movie-going habits exceed those of the general U.S. population, discovery and purchasing habits were not as technology-driven as expected, as shown in a study conducted by Lopez Negrete Communications, Inc., Social Lens Research and MocoSpace mobile gaming platform.

Social Lens Research recruited 2,308 U.S.-based Hispanic respondents via MocoSpace to determine if movie discovery and purchasing habits among Hispanics relied heavily on the use of social media and mobile devices. Lopez Negrete Communications offered strategic guidance around the Hispanic market, as well as movie industry expertise to the study.

Hispanics surveyed are avid moviegoers; 75% go to a movie at least once a month and 34% go more than three times a month. 62 percent of respondents were between the ages of 18 and 34 years old, and 55 percent were females, of which 50 percent have children under 18 years of age.

The findings indicate that the movie industry has opportunities to better reach, engage and increase sales by enhancing mobile capabilities and content. Almost 85% of respondents expressed interest in mobile capabilities and content enhancements, however 54% of respondents felt that buying movie tickets on their mobile phone was too hard.

Top areas for improvement included mobile enabled deals and promo alerts, reward programs and trailer previews. Holidays and opening weekends are the best opportunities to market and reach Hispanics via their mobile phones, as 73% of Hispanics reported going to a movie theater over a holiday and 58% on movie opening weekends.

–Alex López Negrete
CEO and President
Lopez Negrete Communications, Inc.

Hispanics’ top sources for movie discovery are still the traditional ones, such as word of mouth, in theatre movie trailers and TV ads. While 75% use mobile to find movie listings, 92% of respondents still buy movie tickets at the theater. In fact, top five sources for finding new movies were TV ads (57%), trailer at movie (47%), recommendation from friend/family (42%), trailer seen online (39%), buzz on social media (30%).

Overall, Hispanics are more likely to share about a movie that they LIKE versus the ones they DID NOT LIKE. One-to-one communications are critical overall whether they LIKE or DO NOT LIKE a movie. 40%+ shared their opinion via social network sites.

If Hispanics LIKE a movie, most will share their opinions by talking to people about a movie in person (55%) and texting (54%). If they do NOT LIKE a movie, they are more likely to share opinions on social media.

–Justin Siegel

There were three top mobile marketing and commerce opportunities for reaching Hispanic moviegoers:

1) Holiday and Opening weekend promos and deal alerts: Get more Hispanics to choose a movie or theater by offering promos and campaigns around holidays and weekends. Simple promos and deal alerts, campaigns on high movie going times are a reasonable and easy action to implement for attracting more Hispanics to a show-time at a theater.

2) Make it a more local/social/rewarding movie experience: Movie going by nature is a local experience. Given the high rates of opening weekend or holiday attendance, there are opportunities to have more location-specific experiences and social events focused in top Hispanic DMAs, to drive buzz and sales for theaters or movie producers. Easy and cost-effective social tactics that reward and incentivize customers should be encouraged (e.g. a badge for the person who gets the most friends to attend, free popcorn if customers purchase tickets as a group of four or more movie goers).

3) Facilitate mobile movie ticket sales: A surprising 92% of Hispanics are buying their tickets in-person. 54% felt that buying tickets via mobile was too difficult. 22% felt a better mobile ticketing app was needed. Further exploration about the types of app and usability features that will encourage customers to buy tickets on their mobile is needed.

Results can also be seen as an infographic.

Source: Social Lens Research.