How the NFL Can Get Hispanic and Latino Outreach Right

'Por la Cultura' campaign offers lessons in marketing to diverse communities and owning mistakes

The National Football League left everything on the field for Hispanic Heritage Month.

What's the deal?

The NFL recognized Latino and Hispanic coaches, players, and executives. It teamed with community organizations including the Hispanic Heritage Foundation and Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement. It partnered with celebrities, clothing designers, and its own teams to reach underserved audiences.

On social media during its “Por La Cultura” campaign’s first day, the league put a tilde over the “n” in NFL that, it said, provided “unmistakable Latin flavor.” While the league said it was meant to be playful and lighthearted, the tilde’s juxtaposition against the league’s stated mission to “amplify the voices” of its Hispanic and Latino community led critics to throw a flag on the play. Elizabeth Rodriguez, associate director of strategy for branding firm Siegel+Gale, considered the logo disappointing for its misused eñe and its missed opportunity to address organizational change.

The bottom line:

For the NFL, the reaction to the logo has been a chance to learn and improve. For marketers everywhere, it offered lessons about clarity, consistency, and cultural context.

Read: Adweek

Newsletter: 10/06/22 issue