Latine Media Shifts

Media Preferences Shifting Among U.S. Hispanic/Latine Audiences 

The media landscape is constantly evolving, and the latest findings from Horowitz Research’s FOCUS Latinx Volume I: Subscriptions 2024 shed light on significant shifts in the viewing habits of U.S. Hispanic/Latine audiences. This annual report tracks changes in pay and free TV, streaming, internet, and mobile usage among this demographic, revealing a clear trend away from traditional cable and satellite services toward streaming platforms.

Declining MVPD Penetration

The most striking finding from this year’s report is the continuing decline in MVPD (Multichannel Video Programming Distributor) penetration among Latine households. Only 39% of Latine households now subscribe to cable or satellite services, a stark contrast to the 48% subscription rate among consumers overall. This marks a substantial decrease from 2023, when 60% of Latine households still held onto traditional TV subscriptions. 

A Shift to Streaming Services

Historically, Latine audiences have been early adopters of subscription streaming services. Despite this, many Latine households maintained their traditional TV subscriptions to ensure access to Spanish-language content. However, the recent surge in high-quality Spanish-language and Latine-themed content available on streaming platforms has led to a significant shift. Today, 75% of Latine viewers watch at least some content in Spanish, and the demand for Spanish-language programming spans across all levels of acculturation. 

For Spanish-dominant and bilingual Latine consumers, the availability of Spanish-language content remains a crucial factor when selecting a TV service. A notable 68% of Spanish-dominant and 66% of bilingual Latine consumers consider this aspect important. As streaming services continue to expand their Spanish-language offerings, more Latine households are opting to cut the cord with traditional MVPD services.

The Rise of Free and Subscription Streaming

Horowitz’s 2024 study highlights a significant increase in the use of both subscription and free streaming services among Latine content viewers. A robust 78% of Latine households now use subscription streaming services, compared to 63% of the general population. Additionally, 80% of Latine viewers access free streaming services, a figure notably higher than the 67% observed among the broader audience.

The popularity of virtual MVPDs (vMVPDs) such as YouTube TV, Sling, and Hulu with Live TV is also on the rise among Latine audiences. Currently, 36% of Latine households subscribe to vMVPDs, compared to 23% of the overall population. This growth is particularly impressive given that usage of free streaming services among Latine viewers was only 14% in 2019.

Top Streaming Platforms for Latine Households

Latine households show a clear preference for certain streaming services. The top subscription video on demand (SVOD) platforms include Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Hulu, and Max. For free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) services, Tubi, Pluto TV, YouTube, Freevee, and Roku lead the pack. These platforms have successfully captured the attention of Latine viewers by offering a diverse range of content that resonates with their cultural and linguistic preferences.

The Importance of Spanish-Language Content

Adriana Waterston, Executive Vice President and Insights and Strategy Lead for Horowitz Research, emphasizes that the fundamental engagement strategies for Latine audiences remain consistent despite the shifting landscape of content delivery. “Services hoping to attract and retain Latine audiences must continue to focus on presenting the best Spanish-language offerings with high quality, desirable new content as well as robust libraries of classic Spanish shows and movies to represent real value for these viewers,” she notes.

Comprehensive Study Insights

The FOCUS Latinx Volume I: Subscriptions 2024 report provides an in-depth look at the evolving media consumption habits of U.S. Hispanic/Latine consumers. It examines various aspects of the media landscape, including MVPDs, vMVPDs, SVODs, AVOD, FAST, over-the-air (OTA) services, and 5G technology. The study delves into both Spanish and English viewing behaviors and assesses the demand for Spanish-language, international, and U.S.-targeted Latine/Hispanic content.

The data for the 2024 study were collected through a survey conducted in January and February of 2024. The survey included responses from 721 Latine TV content viewers aged 18 and older. The data have been weighted to ensure the results accurately represent the Latine TV universe. The comprehensive report is available in several editions, including total market, FOCUS Latinx, FOCUS Black, and FOCUS Asian, providing a broad perspective on media consumption across different demographic groups.

Conclusion

For service providers and content creators, the message is clear: to capture and retain the attention of Latine audiences, it is essential to deliver high-quality, culturally relevant content that meets their linguistic preferences. By doing so, they can not only attract a growing and diverse audience but also build lasting relationships with viewers who value content that resonates with their cultural identity.

ABOUT HOROWITZ RESEARCH DIVISION OF M/A/R/C RESEARCH

Horowitz Research is a leading provider of consumer market research specializing in consumers and their relationships to media, content, and technology with a particular expertise in cultural insights among America’s Black, Latinx, Asian, LGBTQIA+, and Gen Z audiences. The company offers a full suite of à la carte syndicated reports as well as custom quantitative and qualitative consumer research for companies ranging from small start-ups to Fortune 500. Horowitz Research was recently acquired by M/A/R/C Research, a Texas-based research and insights firm. For more information, visit www.horowitzresearch.com.

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