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Why You May See More Latinos Driving Priuses

Toyota is tapping into one of the nation’s fastest growing markets: Latinos — a segment that’s rising in number, purchasing power and influence — and even so, a segment that most sustainable brands seem to be entirely sidestepping. The automaker recently launched a social media campaign designed for U.S. Latinos that hopes to drive environmental awareness (so to speak) and encourage the community to “continue on the path of going green” (which of course includes driving a Prius).

Toyota is one of the few brands that’s using an environmental message to target this increasingly influential consumer group, which is expected to comprise 30 percent of this country’s population by 2050. Through social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, the campaign promotes greener living by showcasing how a select group of celebrity influencers spends their days living sustainably. Eco-minded actors, musicians and television personalities, such as singer-songwriter Jon Secada (pictured above), are part of this trailblazing campaign meant to increase awareness of sustainability among Latinos.

Toyota seems to have gotten the memo about Latino consumers’ growing might and interest in sustainability. Why haven’t other brands followed suit? A report I wrote and released through Saatchi & Saatchi S last year explores why that might be the case. The report, The Myth of the Sleeping Giant: Why Latinos Are the Fastest Growing Segment the Sustainability Industry Has (N)ever Seen, uncovers the untapped potential of the U.S. Latino market for sustainable business and provides insights on how to engage this increasingly influential demographic.

Curious to learn more? Next week at SB '13, I’ll be part of a panel that further explores this complex topic. Thursday’s panel, titled "Green and Brown: What America's Changing Demographics Mean for Brands of the Future," will feature author Graciela Tiscareño-Sato; Jason Riveiro, Multicultural Marketing Manager at Sherwin-Williams; Verena Sisa, Chief Strategy Officer at Conill, the agency behind Toyota’s recent campaign; and me.

We’re looking forward to a lively conversation about how these demographic shifts are shaping the business landscape and will shape the future of sustainable brands — hope you can join us! Either way, we would love to hear your thoughts.

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