It hurts to see the Creatives disappearing so quickly.
Especially because it’s not all Creatives that are vanishing… it’s just the Latino ones.
There was a time, not long ago, when U.S. Hispanic ad agencies were filled with unique, original creative work driven by talented Creatives.
Then, in recent years, the General Market ad agencies claimed that multicultural business for themselves.
Unfortunately now, in 2017, they don’t invest in Latino talent or creativity the way their Hispanic counterparts did. They contract English-to-Spanish translators instead – whether or not their clients’ target markets are best served by bilingual rather than bicultural messages in the first place.
For a while, there was a trend of General Market agencies hiring Latino Creatives only to relegate them to the work of translation. Brilliant, imaginative minds were reduced to having to copyedit or interpret someone else’s work, rather than being allowed to create anything original of their own.
Now, even that’s coming to an end. More and more frequently, I’m seeing that General Market ad agencies have realized that they can simply cast Latino-looking actors and models (which they usually describe in casting notices as “ambiguously ethnic”) and not hire any full-time Latino staff at all.
I don’t know how, or if, the shrinking role for Latino Creatives can be reversed… In the meantime I raise a toast to the inventive, innovative ones who helped build the U.S. Hispanic ad industry in the first place, so that the General Market found something they could take over today.
*Bernadette Rivero, President, The Cortez Brothers