Trends in the Fast Food Consumption of Hispanics

By June 9, 2016 No Comments

The Hispanic market is growing rapidly. Between 2010 and 2050 there will be a 163% growth in population, with Hispanics making up nearly 30% of the US population by 2050. So how should marketers adapt their advertising strategy to reach this important, growing market at the right time, with the right message?

Here, we use RealityMine’s TouchPoints USA and TouchPoints Hispanics data sets to examine the differences in the fast food consumption of Hispanics. This example highlights the significant differences in the behavior of Hispanics in comparison to the general US population.

Daily reach for purchase of fast food

Figure 1 below shows the daily reach within Hispanics and the general US population for the purchase of fast food. As you can see, purchases drop significantly on Mondays and Sundays for the general population, while purchases stay roughly the same throughout the week for Hispanics.

Daily reach of Fast Food

Figure 1: Daily reach for purchase of fast food. Source: USA TouchPoints and TouchPoints Hispanic Edition.

Fast food consumption throughout the day

Another significant trend can be seen when examining the time of day when fast food is consumed. Among the general USA population, fast food is more likely to be considered a lunchtime meal, with consumption peaking between 12 PM and 1 PM, and a smaller peak for the evening meal between 5 PM and 6 PM.

For Hispanics, the picture is very different. Equal peaks can be seen at lunch and evening meal times, and we can see that evening meal times are slightly later than the general population, with the peak occurring at 7 PM, rather than 6 PM.

Fast food consumption throughout the day

Figure 2: Fast food consumption throughout the Day. Source: USA TouchPoints & TouchPoints Hispanic Edition

Hispanics purchase fast food with their family

An examination of the company in which fast food purchases are made also highlights significant differences in behavior. Hispanics are more likely to enjoy fast food in the company of their family than the general population. This is the case throughout the day, for each meal and snack, but it’s particularly prevalent as the day progresses. Hispanic families are more likely to sit down together and enjoy fast food than those in the general population.

Company in which Fast Food is purchased

Figure 3: Company in which fast food is purchased. Source: USA TouchPoints & TouchPoints Hispanic Edition

Emotional state while consuming fast food

Because receptivity to advertising peaks when emotional states are positive, TouchPoints captures data on the emotions of respondents throughout their day. In figure 4, below, we have grouped together the positive and negative emotional states to give an overview of the likely receptivity of these two groups, throughout the day, while consuming fast food.

Positive states remain similar in the first half of the day, but show significant differences as the day goes on. Between 8 PM and 2 AM, there is a 10 point difference in positive emotions between Hispanics and the general population.


Figure 4: A summary of incidence of a cluster of positive (5) or negative (10) emotions occurring simultaneously with fast food consumption. Source: USA TouchPoints & TouchPoints Hispanic Edition.

Key conclusions for fast food brands

  • There is an opportunity for fast food brands to target Hispanics on Monday and Sunday, when demand from the general population drops off, but stays strong for Hispanics
  • This is also true of evening and late night meals
  • Advertising messaging should consider the importance of family gatherings for the Hispanic market in particular, perhaps offering family meal deals for this market in the evening
  • Hispanics are more likely to be receptive to advertising in the evening and early morning than their counterparts in the general population
  • If the messaging is trying to target people in a negative emotional state, this is broadly similar for both groups throughout the day.