What: The NFL has increased its work engaging the Latino community through various efforts including games in Mexico City and the new Hispanic Leadership Alliance.
Why it matters: The power of the Latino dollar and influence over brands is ever-increasing, and programs like this reinforce their desire to connect.
Earlier this year the NFL announced an expansion of its efforts to better engage the Latino audience in Mexico, which included more grassroots efforts and the extension of their series of regular season games in Mexico City. For brands looking to take the power of the NFL and marry it with the growing and engaged fans, not just in Mexico but Latino fans in the U.S., the effort makes great sense as the league finds ways to grow its massive following.
This past week the league announced another extension of that effort, bringing on Nationwide Insurance to launch the Hispanic Leaders Alliance, in conjunction with the Hispanic Heritage Foundation. The program will expand the relationship between the NFL and HHF, which has existed since 2011, through webinars, community events and other efforts to better position the league with a community they have been steadily growing. Nationwide’s involvement will give the program a much-needed corporate boost as well, providing a longtime NFL partner with a bigger avenue into the growing Latino market and expanding a leadership position in the community.
One of those key growth areas remains the Latino community, and the great success the league enjoyed this past season in Mexico will be expanded by efforts like this one and others to come.
“The launch of the Hispanic Leaders Alliance signifies a continued commitment by the NFL, the Hispanic Heritage Foundation and Nationwide to connect with and serve Latino communities across the country,” said Dawn Hudson, NFL Chief Marketing Officer this past week. “We are excited to connect with this network of leaders on a year-round basis and continue to impact the local communities of our 32 teams.”
A key part of the existing program has been acknowledging leaders during Hispanic Heritage Month, with more than 200 Hispanic leaders from across the country already recognized and more than $400,000 granted to non-profit organizations. The efforts will now focus in every market, as well as with the NFL’s Latino community outreach which can bolster its efforts south of the border as well.
“Nationwide is honored to partner with the NFL and Hispanic Heritage Foundation to support this newly formed Hispanic Leaders Alliance,” added Mike Boyd, Senior Vice-President of Marketing at Nationwide. “Our sponsorship along with the Hispanic Heritage Leadership Awards align with Nationwide’s goal of partnering with organizations that share our values of improving the lives of others and giving back to their communities.”
With Super Bowl week here, the NFL will look to wrap up what has been a tumultuous season and continue its push to marry brands that they have gotten great benefit from to their dedicated extended community programs. These programs will be great currency for the league as it continues to reshape its public persona and grow from the many positive efforts its players and teams are doing in the community. One of those key growth areas remains the Latino community, and the great success the league enjoyed this past season in Mexico will be expanded by efforts like this one and others to come.
The power of the Latino dollar and influence over brands has never been stronger, so marrying Nationwide to this program is a great sign of the future and sets a nice benchmark for future work.
Jerry Milani is a freelance writer and public relations executive living in Bloomfield, N.J. He has worked in P.R. for more than 25 years in college and conference sports media relations, two agencies and for the International Fight League, a team-based mixed martial arts league, and now is the PR manager for Wizard World, which runs pop culture and celebrity conventions across North America. Milani is also the play-by-play announcer for Caldwell University football and basketball broadcasts. He is a proud graduate of Fordham University and when not attending a Yankees, Rams or Cougars game can be reached at Jerry (at) JerryMilani (dot) com.