Tapping Into the Latino Market

When Latinos encounter a Coors Light ad, it’s up to Cristobal Rivera to ensure they know, “Coors Light gets me.” As a brand manager for MillerCoors LLC in Chicago, Rivera oversees the short and long-term planning and execution of the Coors Light brand within the Hispanic market. Since graduating from Duke University in 1998—the first member of his family to attain a college degree—Rivera gained experience in e-commerce, compliance, sales, and marketing in positions held at Prudential Financial and PepsiCo before joining MillerCoors in 2010. Within a year, he was promoted to brand manager and works with various creative agencies to create Coors Light TV, radio, and billboards for the marketplace.

“If we get the mix of research and communication elements right, our consumer will instantly feel connected to the piece and respond positively to our brand.”

Can you give an overview of the popular products and services at MillerCoors?

MillerCoors is the second-largest beer company in America. With almost 200 years of brewing heritage, the company makes, markets, and sells over 30 well-known brands—like Coors Light, Miller Lite, Blue Moon, and Keystone Light to name a diverse few—that appeal to pretty much all beer lovers across the board.

Can you describe your day-to-day responsibilities as brand manager?

My daily tasks vary from month to month. In the early part of the year, I’m focused on the fun part of the job, which is overseeing getting the bulk of the brand’s marketing out the door. To do so, I work with various creative agencies to create Coors Light TV, radio, and billboards for the marketplace. By the middle of the year, my focus has changed to ensuring execution of the Hispanic marketing plan in local markets. I’ll spend a great deal of time partnering with the local sales and marketing teams to ensure they have the information and resources to win in the market. Rounding out the year, I transition to planning for the upcoming year’s strategy and communication. This is a laborious process of consumer research, analysis of business performance, and understanding our competitors’ current and potential moves.

Can you describe your outreach efforts to the Hispanic market?

Coors Light is focused on delivering refreshment “as Cold as the Rockies,” as our tagline says, to all consumers. For the Latino market, we’re delivering this cold refreshment message via the brand’s sponsorship of the Mexican soccer league’s Primera División. As the first brand to ever commercialize this soccer league in the US, we leverage our guys’ number-one passion point—soccer—to expose them to the brand. As fanatics of soccer, we work hard to provide our consumers with cool programs, promotions, and special experiences to give them an inside look into the league. A recent launch we’re quite proud of is our digital platform, FanaticosDelFrio.com. It’s the most soccer-centric site for the Primera División Mexican soccer league out there. Take a look, it’s informative and very interactive … and has plenty of cool, unique content for fans.

Please describe the differences between branding a product to the Hispanic consumer and other
consumers? 

A lot of work and attention to detail goes into marketing authentically to Latino consumers. Our mission is to ensure that when Latinos see a Coors Light communication, they feel and say, “Coors Light gets me.” To do this, we do extensive research to understand them and the occasions in which they enjoy beer, which differ from consumer group to consumer group. We then spend countless hours translating these insights from research into our communication’s copy and imagery. If we get the mix of research and communication elements right, our consumer will instantly feel connected to the piece and respond positively to our brand.

What advice do you have for younger executives interested in brand management? What skill set do you need to succeed?

Brand management is an amazing career. Given that the job’s mission is to advocate for consumers’ needs and wants, the job keeps you on your toes and your ears to the ground at all times. As for skills to develop for promising new marketers, communication skills are a huge must. It is critical to have clear, compelling, and simple communication when trying to sell your solutions to the business, communicate with consumers, or problem solve with an agency. A second skill that is critical to the position is the ability to collaborate with others. As a brand manager, yes, you direct the ship … but with the help of a lot of experts from supply chain, operations, finance to sales. It is important that you are able to partner with these internal partners to solve your business’ issues.

Describe your outreach efforts to the Hispanic market.

Coors Light is focused on delivering refreshment “as Cold as the Rockies,” as our tagline says, to all consumers. For the Latino market, we’re delivering this cold refreshment message via the brand’s sponsorship of the Mexican soccer league’s Primera División. As the first brand to ever commercialize this soccer league in the US, we leverage our guys’ number-one passion point—soccer—to expose them to the brand. As fanatics of soccer, we work hard to provide our consumers with cool programs, promotions, and special experiences to give them an inside look into the league. A recent launch we’re quite proud of is our digital platform, FanaticosDelFrio.com. It’s the most soccer-centric site for the Primera División Mexican soccer league out there. Take a look, it’s informative and very interactive … and has plenty of cool, unique content for fans.

What are some of the key differences between branding a product to the Hispanic consumer and other consumers?

A lot of work and attention to detail goes into market authentically to Latino consumers. Our mission is to ensure that when Latinos see a Coors Light communication, they feel and say, “Coors Light gets me.” To do this, we do extensive research to understand them and the occasions in which they enjoy beer, which differ from consumer group to consumer group. We then spend countless hours translating these insights from research into our communication’s copy and imagery. If we get the mix of research and communication elements right, our consumer will instantly feel connected to the piece and respond positively to our brand.

Can you offer advice to younger executives interested in brand management? What skill set do you need to succeed?

Brand management is an amazing career. Given that the job’s mission is to advocate for consumers’ needs and wants, the job keeps you on your toes and your ears to the ground at all times. As for skills to develop for promising new marketers, communication skills are a huge must. It is critical to have clear, compelling, and simple communication when trying to sell your solutions to the business, communicate with consumers, or problem solve with an agency. A second skill that is critical to the position is the ability to collaborate with others. As a brand manager, yes, you direct the ship … but with the help of a lot of experts from supply chain, operations, finance to sales. It is important that you are able to partner with these internal partners to solve your business’ issues.