By Zaida Diaz
Last weekend a number of fierce, creative and inspiring women gathered in NoHo’s Arts District for our first ever pop-up event titled, Orgullosamente Latina. Mannnn was it everything we dreamed up and more! As a platform for WOC, one of our biggest aims is to empower and support our sisters. Founder and host, Jocelyn De Leon, invited Nielson’s VP of Strategic Initiatives & Consumer Engagement, Stacie de Armas, to deliver a powerful presentation about the modern Latina, her buying power and her social influence. As if that wasn’t enough, we later got an inside look into the career journeys of five prominent women in the entertainment industry. Panelists included radio personality at Big Boy’s Neighborhood, Ayyde Vargas, La Mega’s Melissa “La Popis” Rios, artist and content creator, Jessica Flores, Buzzfeed video producer, Julissa Calderon and podcaster Luz Warrior.
If you missed what was probably one of the dopest events of the year, granted I’m a little biased (sorry not sorry), don’t stress boo. You already know ya girl’s got you covered. Here’s my list of top takeaways from Orgullosamente Latina:
1. Selena Quintanilla remains the QUEEN.
You probably already knew that though. When asked who inspires them, many of the panelists, gave their due praise to the Tex-Mex singer.
She was the first person who I felt like really represented us. She spoke Spanish and English. She loved her Mexican culture as much as she enjoyed her American culture . . . I was like wow, who is this superhero? – Ayyde Vargas
2. You’re not crazy for dreaming big.
Our panelists would not be where they are today if they didn’t aspire to become radio personalities, podcasters, video producers etc. They surely wouldn’t be in those positions had they listened to the multitude of people doubting their dreams. Remember, just because others (even those closest to you) don’t have your vision, it doesn’t mean your crazy. In the words of La Popis, “No estas loca.”
3. Embrace your culture.
Your identity makes you an asset in the workplace. There are about 57 million Latinos in the U.S. As a Latina millennial, being able to connect with the nation’s largest ethnic “minority” puts you at an advantage.
Being bilingual, knowing your culture, knowing that you can relate not only to Caucasians, but also to Latinos is your leverage. – Jessica Flores
4. There’s plenty of room for Madrinas.
Before you raise your eyebrow lemme explain lol. “La Madrina” is simply another term for the deliberate influencer. According to Stacie’s research, people often seek out Latinas for advice (especially when it comes to food, vacation/travel and making purchases). Check out the numbers:
So if you’ve ever wanted to start your own food review series or vlog about your latest adventures then girlllll get yours ’cause there’s an audience ready to listen/watch.
5. Speak to Latinas in their authentic voice.
Whether you’re a business owner or content creator, you need to know who your consumer is. If you’re targeting Latinas, then understanding what motivates and interests them is key to your success.
When 71% of Latinas say they will buy from a company they trust, even if it costs more, then as a business owner this is super insightful. If your customer service game is on point, then it’s very likely that your customer won’t mind paying a few more $$ for your product.