In the thick of it: Making it happen in Chicago

In the thick of it: Making it happen in Chicago

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By: Christina Elizabeth Rodriguez

It seems like now that the presidential elections are over, people are starting to realize the power of the 50.5 million people in the United States. Well, politically, 24 million were eligible to vote, and there are problems emerging from that situation as I write this out. Either way, the country is now convinced that we have some say in how things are run and in the media marketing and entertainment business, we find a lot more people pulling from their deep pockets to spend where the big spenders lie: The Latino market.

Chicago has a very large Latino market with approximately 1.8 million Latinos. In fact, we’re taking over in a series of different areas from comedy, theater and production to entrepreneurial spirit, technological start-ups and digital strategy. Don’t believe what’s being written, just take a look around.

To tell you the truth, the majority of Pícaro Media traveled to Chicago to make it big in the improvisation world. Improv comedy, better said. Word was getting out that Chicago was developing its comedic arm and folks were being pulled from this emerging hub to do bigger and better things.

Production within city limits has increased immensely with just this season alone. The Mob Doctor, Chicago Fire, Boss and Underemployed are all being filmed in Chicago and folks are getting involved (in case you didn’t catch Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s cameo on the pilot of Chicago Fire). This not only brings in direct jobs and money for the city, but it also brings exposure to Chicago like never before.

Now, here’s the burning question: how many of these shows feature, play on or expose Latinos?

We’ve all been to the Mikey O Show, right? Well, get on it if you haven’t. It’s some of the best Latino comedy around. And guess what; Sal Velez, Jr., working actor, native Chicagoan and a friend of Pícaro is bringing a movie to Chicago in 2014. More and more producers, directors and filmmakers of all types are seeing the light and the opportunity in Chicago. In terms of media progression and advancement, Chicago is climbing the charts.

Things are happening and we’re in the thick of it. Pícaro Media is here to cater to the same Latino audiences that big brands are hitting on and hitting hard. Procter & Gamble are at the top of the top 10 brands gearing toward the Latino market list with $225.6 million. Second on the list is Bancorp with $193 million, then Dish Network with $161 million and McDonald’s comes in fourth with $132 million. Big money is going into the Latino market, especially since Forbes put Sophia Vergara on the cover stating that the Latino demographic is the trillion dollar market. Which it is, of course, on track to being the $1.3 trillion market in 2015.

People are looking for us and they’re trying to figure out how to talk to us, how to use us properly. It’s not a language thing. It’s an authentic thing. And who better to talk to the community than people in the community?

Christina Elizabeth Rodríguez is the business development director at Pícaro Media, a content production house geared toward creating content for the New Generation Latino across all screens. Ponte listo. Ponte Pícaro.