Promoting the Latin American Association to Latinos in Georgia
To achieve the LAA’s publicity goals, HBE developed a two-part media relations strategy. The first would focus on the Hispanic media and would comprise consistent communication flow about all the programs, services and resources the LAA offers. Second, a focus on the general market media would similarly highlight the LAA’s programs, but in a way that would attract potential donors and supporters. In addition to event coverage and feature articles, HBE would work to secure interviews for the LAA’s executive director Santiago Marques, as well as other members of the leadership team.
In 2020, the campaign turned to focus almost entirely on the pandemic, as Hispanics were among those hardest hit by the COVID-19 virus because they often hold low-paying, essential worker jobs and live in multi-generational families. HBE worked extensively with the LAA and the media to encourage vaccination, fight misinformation, and help businesses recover from the pandemic-caused recession. For example, HBE publicized the first-ever visit to the LAA by a Georgia governor, Brian Kemp, who brought Public Health Commissioner Dr. Kathleen Toomey to discuss vaccine hesitancy and assure Latinos that Covid-19 vaccines were safe, effective and available. They returned weeks later for a follow-up visit, which included the media as well.
HBE also publicized the weekly vaccination clinics held at the Latin American Association, a far more appealing location to Hispanics than mass vaccination sites or vaccinations delivered at government buildings that many Hispanics are fearful of visiting. For Hispanics who needed food assistance, HBE publicized the re-opening of the LAA’s food pantry.
In addition, HBE publicized regular webinars the LAA hosted to get Latinos important, accurate information about the virus and break the stigma of vaccination, featuring guests such as famed Emory University epidemiologist Dr. Carlos del Rio, Georgia Insurance Commissioner John King, Georgia Public Health Commissioner Dr. Toomey, and LAA chief Marquez.
The Latin American Asociation has been in operation for 50 years and is the largest Hispanic nonprofit in Georgia. However, many of its vital programs were still unknown to much of the Hispanic audience, for whom it exists to serve. the LAA sought to expand its reach and recognition with help from HBE’s Hispanic division, led by Gina Espinosa.
HBE’s efforts have been successful, as the LAA has experienced increased traffic at events, seen more clients in the building, and received more donations. During the pandemic outreach, vaccination rates increased while struggling families and businesses received vital assistance. Hispanic media coverage has included EL Nuevo Georgia, Hisp Atlanta, Univision, Telemundo, Prensa Atlanta, and Notivision, while general market media includes 11 Alive, WSB, Fox 5, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Rough Draft, the and the Marietta Daily Journal, among many others.
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