The diversity of New York City's 2.6 million Latino readers is reflected in their newspapers. Besides the two well known dailies El Diario/La Prensa and Hoy, there are countless weeklies and monthlies targeting specific neighborhoods, nationalities, religions and interests within the Hispanic market. Michelle Rea, executive director of the New York Press Association, which represents many of the more than 200 ethnic papers in New York City, helps companies plan and buy ads in ethnic print. Rea says each of the papers fills a specific niche. She disagrees with the commonly held perception that advertisers are only interested in high circulation figures. “All the companies I talk to are dying to advertise in ethnic papers. It really comes down to the media buyer and whether or not they're willing to do their homework.” If Hoy's circulation misstatement is any indication, most media buyers and advertisers are not.


Publishers struggle to drive up circulations – and get the audits to verify them – in order to attract the major ad accounts that will drive revenues. Hora Hispana, launched in early October, is the latest in a string of Spanish-language publications launched by the Daily News (daily, circ. 747,053). Hora Hispana, a 200,000 circulation free weekly, is hung on door knobs in high-density (75%) Hispanic neighborhoods in the Bronx (65,000), Upper Manhattan (35,000), Brooklyn (60,000), and Queens (40,000). Readership will be primarily Puerto Rican, Dominican and Mexican, and includes a large number of Latinos who do not identify with a specific nationality. Hora Hispana is bundled around long-standing supermarket (Pathmark, Albertson's) circulars and distributed to Hispanic households on the circulars' well-established distribution routes. Rudy Zaccagno, retail advertising and business manager at the Daily News, is clear about their goal. “We are looking to become the dominant paper in New York City for advertisers who want to reach the Spanish-speaking population. We have a circulation that will be able to attract major national accounts.” Hora Hispana advertisers include Rockaway Bedding, P.C. Richards, and Seaman's. Zaccagno says Macy's and Pathmark are coming soon.

El Diario/La Prensa (Impremedia, LLC, daily, paid circ. 57,550, Spanish), the oldest of the Spanish language newspapers with a weekly circulation only about 100,000 more than Hora Hispana, has survived in New York City for almost a century. “We have grown with the community,” says publisher Rosanna Rosado. She says that many of the newer Spanish language papers see Hispanics only as a market. According to her, El Diario/La Prensa sees its newspaper, and newspapers in general, as essential survival tools. “A lot of English language publishers who publish Spanish supplements do so with the mission of eventually bringing readers over to their English language pubs. Their commitment is first and foremost to the English language pub.” The Daily News, a general market paper which also publishes the bilingual monthly supplement VIVA (circ. 425,000) and the new weekly Hora Hispana, sees it differently. “We have never rolled out such an array of products in such a concentrated period of time,” says Les Goodstein, chief operating officer of the Daily News. “All of them are targeted at specific audiences, but the goal is to grow the sum of the parts.”

Hoy (Tribune Corp., daily, paid circ. between 40-50,000, publisher's statement), the other Spanish language daily, is still an upstart compared with El Diario, which has strong ties to the Hispanic community, particularly Puerto Ricans – many of whom have lived in the New York area for several generations. Hoy has more local content focusing on New York's many emerging Spanish-speaking communities and the different countries they represent. According to Hoy's publisher Digby Solomon Diez, Hoy's NY readers tend to be younger with higher incomes and skewed a little more male than El Diario. Noticias del Mundo, an 8,000 circulation daily popular among older Hispanics and Mexicans, folded earlier this year after running at a loss for its entire 24 year existence. According to Solomon Diez, Noticias' departure from the market has had no measurable effect on Hoy.

Dailies compete with dailies, Hispanic or not

El Diario publisher Rosanna Rosado points out that El Diario and Hoy are not only competing with each other and other Spanish-language papers, but also with English language dailies. “That's who we're sitting beside on the newsstands.” According to a 2003 survey of 1400 Hispanics in New York City and New Jersey conducted by the Hispanic Federation, the number one newspaper read by Hispanics was The Daily News (32%). Rudy Zaccagno, retail advertising and business manager at the Daily News says the paper has about 400,000 Hispanic readers. El Diario/La Prensa came in second with 19%, followed by The New York Times. The New York Post (News Corporation, daily circ. 652,426 pending ABC audit) which came in 4th in the survey, just ahead of Hoy, reported that their monthly Hispanic supplement NYP Tempo launched last October, increased Hispanic readership by 20% during its first 6 months, bringing Daily News Hispanic readership up to about 19%.

Hispanic monthlies target an increasingly acculturated Hispanic

NYP Tempo (The New York Post, monthly, circ. 678,000, English), an arts and entertainment supplement targeting young, hip, bicultural Hispanics, is distributed once a month inside every copy of The New York Post. “The New York Post took a gutsy stance,” said Tony Martinez, special section marketing manager at The Post. “We understand that Hispanics aren't limited to certain zip codes and that they might pick up a paper in a neighborhood other than the one they live in. Also, we believe that our non-Hispanic readers will also be interested in Latino lifestyles and entertainment.” Martinez explains that The New York Post's decision to publish a widely distributed English language paper targeting Hispanics was based on a lot of market research. The research showed that not only were Latinos the fastest growing market, but that the segment of the Latino market growing the fastest was the second generation, bicultural Hispanic.

Desmond D'Silva, Media Supervisor at Mediacom Latino, also recognizes this growing population, but envisions a slightly different editorial product. “I think the demographic that really wants a paper indicative of their lifestyle is the 25-50+ Hispanic who is very acculturated, educated and climbing the corporate ladder as quickly as his/her American counterparts. In essence, we need a New York Times sort of publication that really looks at the daily life and needs of the upwardly mobile Hispanic professional.” The New York Times is currently working to attract Hispanic readers to their English language pub. The Times' Hispanic campaign includes Spanish language radio ads, seminars in Spanish on preparing for college, real estate and small business management, media sharing with Spanish language pubs, and Hispanic targeted messages in English which are integrated into their direct marketing campaigns.

Although NYP Tempo's news and entertainment supplement may seem very different from the New York Times type publication D'Silva describes, Martinez says this is just the beginning. “The weekly ‘Tempo Teaser' which began October 6th is our initial step toward increasing frequency and expanding our editorial product. Eventually we hope to include more news and politics and move toward weekly distribution.” Currently NYP Tempo's ad mix is 60% national/40% local and includes advertisers like Johnny Walker Black Label, Steve Madden, and the J-Lo Clothing line.

The Daily News publishes VIVA (circ. 425,000), NYP Tempo's main competitor, a less flashy, less celebrity-focused monthly that targets a slightly older, more conservative Spanish speaking or bilingual reader. VIVA is distributed inside the Daily News to specific zones designated to have a high concentration of Hispanics. El Diario/La Prensa also has its own bilingual, monthly publication – Urban/Sofrito, which calls itself “culturally relevant and cross-generational,” but appears to target younger Hispanics. Some of the Hispanic neighborhood newspapers that have been launched in the past few years are also bilingual – Manhattan Times in Washington Heights (weekly, circ. 15,000), Highbridge Horizon in the Bronx (weekly, circ. 5,000) and La Voz de Queens.

Magazines in NYC

National magazines like People en Espanol (Time, Inc., monthly, circ. 425,000, Spanish) also compete for readership and advertising in New York City. New York is People en Espanol's 2nd largest U.S. market, with a circulation of over 44,000 or roughly 10% of its total U.S. circulation. According to Jose Perez, director of consumer marketing, People en Espanol's New York readership is approximately 38% Mexican (19% are U.S. born), 25% Central and South American and 18% Puerto Rican, Dominican and Cuban. “We overindex against the Carribbean, South and Central American populations – a direct correlation with our editorial, which focuses on Latinos of diverse nationalities, not just Mexico.”

Carrie Barnes


Portada Staff

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