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Research: How effective was Macy’s, JC Penney’s, Walmart’s and Target’s Hispanic TV spend over the Holidays?


sean muller headshotSean Muller, CEO of  TV advertising analytics provider iSpotTV writes the below exclusive column on how major retailers targeted the Hispanic population over TV during the Holiday period and the impact it had on social media activity related to the airings.  As the Hispanic market continues to grow, big brands have been catching on. And, this season’s holiday and Black Friday advertising for retail stores showed no exceptions. At least, not for JCPenney and Walmart.

Since the 2014 World Cup, JCPenney has switched gears and began tailoring its advertising toward the Hispanic market. Fast forward five months to November, JCPenney still leads with the highest percentage of total ads aimed toward this demographic among Walmart, Target and Macy’s.

Between Nov. 1 through Dec. 31, 43 percent of JCPenney’s ads were in Spanish. Macy’s had the second-highest percentage of commercials in Spanish at 29 percent, Walmart was at 23 percent and Target had the least percentage of commercials in Spanish at 19 percent.

In comparison to Walmart, Target and Macy’s, JCPenney had among the fewest amount of creatives, but had the highest concentration of commercials in Spanish — and spent less money in the process.

Big Spenders (Nov. 1 – Dec. 31, 2014)

RetailerExpenditure in US$ MillionNumber of CommercialsNational Airings

Source: iSpotTV

Most effective Holiday Ads

iSpot has a tool called Ad Effectiveness Rating, a score that measure how well a commercial did in comparison to other commercials in the same category. The score comes from dividing the volume of digital activity that resulted from the commercial (the earned digital impact across social, search and online video of the TV ad,
by the estimated TV spend as compared to all other campaigns on national TV.

Of the top three most effective ads for JCPenney, the top two were in Spanish. The most effective spots advertises the sale “Alístate Para las Fiestas.” One commercial features loved ones opening presents. The commercial has an effectiveness rating of 7.2, while the industry average during the holidays was 3.8. The other spot earned a rating of 7.4.

Walmart’s most effective ad is officially titled “Con Tantos Ahorros de Walmart ¡Saldrás Corriendo por Ellos!” The commercial is about a couple spending time together on a sofa while watching TV. When a commercial for Walmart’s rollbacks, the husband looks toward his wife and realizes she has suddenly vanished. The commercial had an effectiveness rating of 7.9.

Top Three English-language Networks by National TV Airings

(Between Nov. 1 through Dec. 31:)

– JCPenney, Lifetime 7.4 percent, USA Network 6.4 percent, E! 6.1 percent

– Walmart, BET 6.1 percent, UPtv 5.6 percent, TV One 4.9 percent

-Macy’s, Ovation 6 percent, Nick 3.6 percent, MTV 3.2 percent

-Target E! 7.3 percent, Nick 6.4 percent, MTV 5.2 percent

Spanish-language Networks by National TV Airings

Retailer/NetworkProportion of TV Ad Budget spent on UnivisionInvesment in US$ (millions)

Note: Currently, the Spanish-language networks national monitors are Univision, Telemundo Source: iSpotTVA look at the Univision spendThroughout the holidays, JCPenney, Walmart, Target and Macy’s all aired commercials on Univision. JCPenney and WalMart focused on the Latin network the most.Source: iSpotTV

These efforts are not new to JCPenney. The retailer has been continuing to increase its marketing efforts toward Latinas. JCPenney concentrated on the Hispanic market during the World Cup.Fifty-seven percent of JCPenney’s 14 national commercials were in Spanish – airing more Spanish-language commercials than Walmart, Target and Macy’s.“Hispanics make up nine percent of JCPenney’s customer base and account for a double-digit percentage of store sales, in addition to a single-digit percentage of online sales,” according to an article on Ad Age. “The segment is expected to be the single-biggest source of growth for the retailer in 2014.”Despite that JCPenney has spent less money on national TV airings and has instead focused onproducing new commercials, the message is clear that it continues to reach out creatively to a new, continuously growing market. Hopefully its shift in this multicultural marketing approach will maximize business.

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