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Hispanics lean into streaming, but still find accurate representation lacking in media

3 minute read | September 2023

Among the many media options that audiences have access to, Hispanics, like all U.S. audiences, spend the most time with TV. And when it comes to their TV content preferences, Hispanics remain dedicated streaming-first audiences. 

Compared with the general population, Hispanic adults spent 27.3% more time with TV connected devices (CTV)1 in first-quarter 2023. Notably, Hispanics have been leaders in CTV adoption for quite some time. As of May 2023, only 42% of Hispanic TV homes were traditional cable homes, down from 49% a year earlier2.

In addition to providing significantly more choice than traditional linear channels, streaming services have the ability to offer more of the diverse, representative and accessible content that Hispanic audiences are looking for.

Given their outsized CTV appetites, it’s no surprise that Hispanics find more of what they’re looking for on streaming platforms.

In the U.S., approximately 84% of the 1 million video titles3 available to audiences are on streaming services. But why are these services and content resonating so deeply with Hispanic audiences? The answer is volume and choice. And among the seemingly endless array of choice, Latinos find the most representations among dramas and documentaries4, highlighting a perceived lack of authentic Latino portrayals in many of television’s most-watched genres, including comedy, reality, news and sports.

Importantly, Nielsen’s most recent Attitudes on Representation in Media Survey found that Hispanic audiences are 19% more likely than the general population to say they feel underrepresented in TV and films. Hispanic representation in media is low, as data from Gracenote Inclusion Analytics shows that Hispanics had an 8.5% share of screen5 in streaming content in the first half of 2023, which is well below their representation in the U.S. population.

Comparatively, share of screen on broadcast was 22%. The downside there is that Hispanic adults spend the least amount of time watching traditional live and time-shifted television programming. Notably, Spanish-dominant Hispanics still spend 28.2% of their time on broadcast TV—an important cultural touchstone.

Even with nearly 800,000 titles originally produced in Spanish to choose from, nearly 30% of Hispanics say they have trouble finding something on TV to watch. In fact, our latest Attitudes on Representation on TV Study found that Hispanic audiences were the most likely to say that representation has declined in accuracy since 2021. This suggests that even though representation is increasing, especially on traditional TV, Hispanics don’t view it as accurate.

Understanding and respecting the diverse dynamics within the Hispanic community is not just a social responsibility; it’s a pathway to success. To build trust, improve representation and forge stronger connections with this growing community, brands and media companies must invest time and effort in understanding and meeting the unique needs of the Hispanic audience.

For additional insights, download our latest Hispanic Diverse Intelligences Series report. 

Notes

1CTV refers to any television that is connected to the internet. The most common use case is to stream video content.
Nielsen National TV Panel
3Gracenote Video Data, June 2023
4Nielsen Attitudes on Representation in Media Supplemental Study, 2022
5Share of screen, from Gracenote Inclusion Analytics, is the percentage of an identity group that appears on screen.
6Gracenote Global Video Data
7Nielsen Scarborough USA+ 2022, Release 2

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