Olga Bueno


What: Tú cuentas, the platform dedicated to US Hispanics’ opinions on products and services, has revealed the results of their latest study. We at Portada talked to Olga Bueno, founder and CEO, about the key findings.
Why it matters: Tú Cuentas’ survey has shown Hispanics are optimistic about the future as long as key values are in order, which should be integrated into marketing efforts to address this audience.

Olga Bueno, founder and CEO of Tú Cuentas

When Olga Bueno founded Tú Cuentas back in 2011, she noticed there was not a place available online where Hispanics living in the US could speak openly about everyday opinions and habits. Now, Tú Cuentas is a place where Latinos feel safe, like someone is paying attention to their needs and it is worth it to participate in surveys that could have some resonance in the Hispanic market. We talked to Olga a few months ago about the essence of her work; this time, she provides her insights on the latest survey conducted by Tú Cuentas, which sheds light into Hispanics’ feelings and perspectives about the new year, living in the United States, and how their lives have changed with Drumpf’s administration. Thanks to the survey’s insights, marketers (and particularly multicultural) can get a good idea of how to successfully connect with the ever-growing Latino audience in the U.S, and more importantly, how to gain their trust.



1. In Spite of All, U.S. Hispanics Remain Optimistic

According to the survey results, Hispanics in the United States are highly optimistic. In spite of the new administration, and contrary to what could be expected, they feel their lives have improved during the last year rather than worsened. “One would expect immigrants here to feel more rejected, to believe it has been a bad year for them,” said Olga Bueno. “But somehow they are happy, grateful to be here, and they have faith that everything will be better. I was surprised to hear that 2017 was better for them than 2016 after having Drumpf as president and the country becoming more anti-immigration.”

Even though 51% of the respondents believe they would be better if Hillary Clinton had won the election, 65% agree that 2017 was better than 2016, and the main reason was that they felt stable at work.














2. Hispanics Decide to Stay Positive and Make it Better

Perhaps the key words would be “in spite of”. US Hispanics are aware of the country’s issues. When asked what they feel are the most important problems, a majority mentioned racism, terrorism and immigration, but in spite of all the things that could go wrong, they decide to stay optimistic. In Olga Bueno’s words, “Family and work are the two aspects that really matter, if those are fine, then it’s okay. Even if the rest is not going that well, I choose to remain optimistic and trust that it will get better.” Then, 2017 was better than 2016 because they worked to make it better. They put enough effort into family and work life, and they plan to keep on working in 2018. According to the survey, 63% of the respondents think they will be financially better or much better in 2018 than in 2017, and only 6% think they will be worse or much worse.


3. Marketers Need to Learn to Communicate with Latinos

Once upon a time, marketing campaigns targeted to Hispanic needed simply to be in Spanish and they could be effective. Now, there’s an idea that language alone is not enough, and there has been a successful move towards culturally-targeted strategies rather than language-targeted. “Marketers feel the future Latino,” asserts Bueno, “a more acculturated Latino, born and raised in the U.S., proud of their country and relatively integrated to the American society.” But this does not necessarily represent Hispanics’ true connection to their heritage. In Olga Bueno’s experience, even when consumers prefer content in English, they are still interested in using Spanish as an anchor to their Latino identity. Even when it’s easy to go with the majority, “We’ve seen people whose second language is Spanish choosing to speak it over English. For them, Tú Cuentas is a Latino place, akin to their community, so they feel like using Spanish with us,” she explains.

Tú Cuentas is a Latino place, akin to their community, so they feel like using Spanish with us.


4. Hispanics Might Not Know How Important Their Vote Is

Among the key findings of the study conducted by Tú Cuentas, Olga Bueno mentions that Hispanics in America are not fully aware of the collective power they have to influence policy, even if they are fully cognizant of what needs to be improved in the country. “I was surprised because they know about the country’s problems, like racism, immigration, gun control…, but they don’t know why they are voting next November,” she says. “Something we need to achieve with the Latino market is letting them see they have power, their community is powerful, but they need to be better informed.”


5. Multicultural/Hispanic Marketing Has a Great Future

At the end of the day, knowing all this about how Latinos feel in the U.S. gives us great insight into the needs of the Hispanic market, but marketers need to use this information wisely. As Olga Bueno explains, “They will remember, and future generations will remember, who is on their side and who is not. They’ll remember which company has listened, and which company has turned its back on them. Firms should not forget, this is a minority that is gradually becoming a majority that should not be pushed aside.”

They’ll remember which company has listened.

Hispanics account for a significant part of all Americans, and while some companies are on the right track, there is still a lot to learn about how to communicate with them, and how to become a brand they not only trust, but they want their family to trust as well.

Olga Bueno, Co-Founder of TuCuentas.com, in many ways epitomizes the Hispanic digital entrepreneur. A few years ago, Bueno saw that “Hispanics lack an online venue made for them, where they interact with other Latinos and learn from their experiences with a variety of products and services.” So she created TúCuentas.com, Bueno tells Portada all about it below.

Portada interviews Olga Bueno, Co-Founder TU CUENTAS, LLC.

Portada: How did Tucuentas.com come about?

O.B:“Earlier in my career I noticed that my clients (big U.S. corporations) reached Latinos mainly via TV and print, with very limited online efforts. Nevertheless, research at that time indicated that Latinos were already online. But they seemed to lack an online venue made for them, where they could interact with other Latinos and learn from their experiences with a variety of products and services. So, we created Tú Cuentas as a venue where Latinos could speak up and learn from other Latinos. Tú Cuentas has a double meaning in Spanish “You count” and “You tell”.

Portada:  What is the business model behind Tucuentas.com?

O.B: “From the beginning, we did not want to be associated with any particular brand. So we created our platform for our members to share their opinions and tell us anything – positive or negative. As a result, we do not offer advertising on our site. We make money by using our most precious asset, honesty from our members. This translates into market research for companies: online surveys, discussion forums, poll questions, private online communities and online ethnographies. Our members speak up on our site as they would with their friends, because they see us not as a company, but as a friend. We in turn reward them with points that can be exchanged for amazon gift cards or PayPal credits.”

Portada: What pages get more visits on Tucuentas.com , English or Spanish and why?
O.B: “Definitely the Spanish pages. Our membership skews towards Spanish preferred. We see that the Spanish speaking population is particularly underserved in the online communities sector and we want to cover that gap.”

 We created a site that works, an engaged membership and have a proven track record of satisfied clients including Xoom and Grupo Gallegos.

Portada: How do you recruit/build your audience?

O.B: “We started building our audience using Google AdWords and Facebook Ads (mainly in Spanish). Additionally, we have a feature in our online community that allows us to track referrals from members and automatically assigned them points as a token of appreciation. When we need to recruit a specific demographic, we use both online ads and member referrals.”

Portada: Why are you looking for finance and for how much? 

O.B: “We built www.tucuentas.com with no outside funding. We created a site that works, an engaged membership and have a proven track record of satisfied clients including Xoom and Grupo Gallegos among others. In order for us to grow, we need outside funding to add more features to the site, increase our database and dedicate efforts to business development.”

Portada: What would your ideal investor in Tucuentas.com be? 

O.B: “Our ideal investor would be a market research company looking to expand their services to include the Spanish-speaking U.S. Hispanic Market. This would allow us to leverage our expertise and valuable tool with a larger client base.”

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