This past week, I received one of the greatest honors since I started Latino Branding Power just over two years ago. On Monday, March 25, at the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Annual Awards Banquet, I received the award for Hispanic Business of the Year in recognition for efforts with Latino Branding Power. It was an incredible honor to be recognized by my peers, the West Michigan Latino business community, and the many people who have supported me over the years.
I was honored last week to be invited to participate on a panel discussion with other esteemed West Michigan colleagues at Davenport University. The panel was part of a series by the university entitled Secrets of Success. We were asked, as Latino business owners, to talk about lessons learned, barriers overcome, and our thoughts about how other businesses and organizations can connect to the burgeoning Latino demographic. It was a privilege to be invited and I truly enjoyed the engaging conversations held with the audience and my fellow panelists.
I recently accepted a chair position for the marketing committee of the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (HCCWM). During a recent meeting, we discussed the breakdown of the HCCWM’s membership base. Roughly half of the organization’s members are “general market” businesses seeking to connect with the region’s Latino customer base. The other half consists of Hispanic business owners. Of these, half are bi-lingual and acculturated to the U.S. way of life but still have significant connections to their Latino roots. The other half consists “recent arrivals”, primarily immigrants from Latin American that are Spanish dominant. We had a good discussion about how we will need to differentiate the HCCWM’s marketing strategies to appeal to these various members.