PACO has worked with the Bears since 2012 to help them engage with and grow the sport of American football in Chicago’s Hispanic community.
Working in partnership with the Bears, we identified several avenues to help achieve our challenge objectives. These included:
- A focus on culture: Our research showed that the core and casual Hispanic Bears fan in Chicagoland was nearly twice as likely to be bicultural and/or primarily speak English than the overall Latino population. Using culture rather than language as the primary focus of outreach efforts and integrating ¡Vamos Bears! into the broader brand campaign helps ensure Hispanic fans feel a part of the larger fan base, not apart from it.
- Culture in Social Media: Helping the Bears with outreach to Latinos is a year-long exercise. We work to create posts for relevant holidays such as Día de los Reyes, Posadas, Noche Buena, and, yes, Cinco de Mayo.
- Community Events: PACO works with the Bears to identify and establish the team’s presence as not only a supporter, but a part of Chicago’s large Hispanic community. Participation at events such as the Puerto Rican People’s Day and Mexican Independence Day parades, Ruido Fest, and others, demonstrates this commitment.
- Community Partnerships: In addition to event activations, PACO has helped the Bears identify and form alliances with organizations such as the IHCC and Mariachi Heritage Foundation as well as individuals such as B96 morning show host Gabe Ramirez. Bears partnerships also allowed the creation of instant fan favorites such as a custom Bears Lotería deck featuring artwork by local artist Kane One.
The Bears’ efforts have been met with continually increasing success. Social media efforts have seen considerable engagement, both from fans in Chicago and abroad – interestingly on Cinco de Mayo (a non-culturally-specific celebration that takes place well outside the football season) in particular. From a baseline of relatively low engagement, the Bears’ presence at events grew to reach over 380,000 people in 2019.
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