What Your Brand Needs to Know about Hispanic College Students

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It is no secret that college students are one of the most diverse generations in the US. Of the 75 million, over 42% are multicultural. 24 million identify themselves as Hispanic, comprising half of the total US population, according to Viant. Their study takes a look into the insights for marketers to understand this fastest growing segment.

The power of Hispanic women

Latina women are quickly becoming the new majority customer for retail, as their purchasing power is up to $3.3 billion. They average spending $1,998 on apparel and service purchases per year, in comparison to $1,569 for non-Hispanics, according to Multicultural Retail 360. The dollars only demonstrate part of the growth: by 2060, Hispanic women will make up 30% of the total female population.

Get social

Hispanic college students are an extremely digitally-savvy group, as they are more willing to embrace mobile and social media platforms. They are also more open to communicating with brands over social media. Almost 50% of Hispanic college-aged shoppers shared that they had either discussed a brand online with others or used a brand’s hashtag compared to 17% of non-Hispanic shoppers. Additionally, 58% of Hispanic women follow beauty brands on social media compared to the 14% of the general college student population.


Retail spending

Taking a look at department store shopping behavior, Hispanic millennials are 26% more likely to shop at JCPenney or Nordstrom and 21% more likely to shop at Macy’s. They spend the most money at JCPenney, outspending non-Hispanic college students by about 10%. Because Hispanics are a more social and multigenerational cultural group, they believe retail stores should experiment with changes in store layout to accommodate larger groups and facilitate in-store shopping experiences.

Besides traditional brick and mortar stores, Viant examined their spending behavior at the nation’s largest online retailer, Amazon. One out of five Hispanic college students shop at Amazon, and they shop 1.6 times more often than at Nordstrom, one of the top department stores.


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