Hispanic Millennials, those aged 18 to 34, represent the largest segment of the Hispanic population after Generation Z (aged under 18). Their size and the purchasing power they wield provide a great opportunity for food marketers who want to tap this vital segment.
Latina Millennials, however, cannot be painted with a broad brush. Their tastes and purchasing patterns vary with their level of acculturation. I’d like to introduce you to one of them. Her name is Sophia Sano.
She is a fully acculturated Latina and she considers herself a foodie. Sophia has grown up in the United States. She loves the dishes made by her mami, her tías and her abuelita, but she also likes to experiment, integrating the flavors she’s sampled from cultures as varied as Indian, Chinese, Italian or Korean.
Sophia is one of the personas developed as part of the Latina Millennial Grocery Shopper Model, which will be unveiled later this year. This model is just the latest segment of the Hispanic Millennial Project, which explores a variety of topics, including grocery shopping and health attitudes.
Sophia confirms many of the trends in the United States on grocery shopping, which is shifting to a desire for global and exotic fare as well as healthy fresh. She is the most acculturated within her cohort of Latina Millennials. She likes to bring out the best of her heritage and combine it with flavors from far-away places.
Sophia is also a discerning foodie, making deliberate purchases based on research and her own diet criteria. According to data from The Hispanic Millennial Project, she believes healthy meals can be great-tasting and she’s reading food labels to know what she buys. Before Sophia even goes to the store, she has spent time online researching specific products, as well as checking store flyers for specials.
Due to Sophia’s acculturation, she identifies with food and mommy bloggers, recognizing an opportunity to share her point of view. She combs Instagram and Pinterest for recipes and watches how-to videos on Facebook and YouTube to see the best ways to combine unique flavors.
Advertisers should take note that Sophia also likes to share these recipes with friends and family. She is most often motivated by her sense of adventure but not at the cost of providing healthy items for herself and her family. An approach focused solely on her heritage will not be as effective.
So when you see that food truck selling Korean BBQ tacos made with bulgogi sauce, think of Sophia Sano making these cool combinations at home.