Ten years after initial publication, New York-based magazine Urban Latino is staying true to its editorially-driven roots, while expanding online to stay contemporary. “When we first started, 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. “I was and still am a big fan of Vibe magazine, and initially set out to bring that model to the Hispanic community.”
And as the magazine has grown and aged, so has its audience. Its target audience is older 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, which mirrors 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. 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. “For instance, our next issue profiles Fidel Castro and his life. 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.