The twice-yearly MAGIC fashion industry trade show took place in Las Vegas last week (Feb. 17-19, Las Vegas Convention Center). The three-day fashion industry event put together thousands of fashion designers, buyers, marketers and suppliers.
For the first time there was an important Hispanic presence in the program as well as a new exhibition area dedicated to the Hispanic and Latin American markets: MAGIA, endorsed by the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, offered resources for retailers, buyers and marketers looking to tap into the Hispanic market.
The special seminars dedicated to the Hispanic market included one on the topic “Keeping up with the fastest growing market in the U.S.” by Carlos Santiago, President, Santiago Group.
Jose Lopez Varela, Chairman of AHAA, and Greg Anthony, SVP of Alloy Access spoke in a panel called “Is your Advertising and Marketing reaching Hispanics?”, which was moderated by Marcos Baer, publisher of Portada. Jose Lopez Varela emphasized how important it is for major retailers and apparel brands to allocate an important part of their budgets to the Hispanic market. He noted that both JC Penney and WalMart strong sales results are to a large extent due to their relatively high Hispanic advertising budgets.
Alloy Access´ Greg Anthony pointed out that one of his clients, a Natick, MA, based retailer has had achieved very good results targeting Hispanics. These good results are attributable to the frequency of their Hispanic newspaper advertising insertions as well as the strong community driven content of these newspapers.
Forces Affecting the Hispanic Apparel Consumer
Another panel, on the forces affecting the apparel landscape for Hispanic consumers was presented by Kim Rayburn, SVP of Global Solutions of BIG Research, Lorena Hidalgo, Hispanic Marketing Manager at Wrangler and Veena Chattaraman, Assistant Professor of the Department of Consumer Affairs at Auburn University, AL. The latter presented the main results of a study on bicultural women she recently conducted. The main conclusions include the following:
– Specific Hispanic branding has a greater impact for bicultural women than the Hispanic and mainstream segments
– The implicit cultural relevance of a product attributes positively impacts all these segments
– Product takes center stage: Marketers need to appeal to Hispanic market based on intrinsic needs of the Hispanic consumer and the cultural relevance of the product.
On Wednesday evening Televisa Publishing hosted a “Meet the Buyers” reception at the Mandalay Bay Hotel.
The Magic conference, which usually gets more than 20,000 visitors, was somewhat scaled back due to the recession this year. Among the MAGIC buyers, designers and other celebrities that were present at the show were hip hop pioneer and Def Jam Records icon Russell Simmons; actor Charlie Sheen; and actor-comedian Chris Tucker.
In addition, actor-rapper and Grammy Award winner Common put in some face time at the convention.
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