‘Bebe Boomers’ redefine what it means to be Latino in the U.S.
First there was Generation X, then came Y and Z. Now the so-called “bebe boomers” are taking over — and they’re transcending cultural barriers.
The Hispanic Group, an independent communications agency coined the term “bebe boomers” last week to describe the growing population of Latinos born in the U.S, and the cultural shift that joins this boom. Think of all the bebes (or babies) born to first- generation American citizens whose lives are rooted in the U.S. The “bebe boomers” are in touch with the American way of life, yet have a strong appreciation for their parents’ cultural values.
One in four babies born in the U.S. is Hispanic, according to data collected by the Hispanic Group. The Latino demographic explosion we are seeing today resembles the baby boom of the post-World War II era. However, this boom is based on ethnicity. “The most important immigration wave that exists today is the Hispanic wave,” says Jose Luis Valderrama, the firm’s founder and president.
In the next 25 years, Valderrama says, “bebe boomers” will change the face of consumerism in America. By 2013, the purchasing power of the U.S. Hispanic population is expected to reach $1.3 trillion a year, according to Hispanic Group. Advertisers need to pay attention.
As a Salvadoran-American born in the U.S. to immigrant parents, it didn’t take me long to realize that I am what Valderrama would call, a “bebe boomer.” At times I’m too Latina to be American, and too American to be Latina — I’m a blend, a mixture of two distinct cultures. I watch Dancing With the Stars religiously, and yet I can’t help but curl up on the couch every Saturday night to watch Sabado Gigante with my family, as I’ve done since I was a kid.
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