Baseball team targets Hispanics

diamondback.gifHispanics are being sought after by the Diamonbacks in an effort to expand their fanbase. In a state like Arizona, where the Hispanic population has reached 29.2%, they are key for the baseball league to improve their incoming revenue.

The Diamonbacks hope to achieve the same success that was attained by the LA Dodgers when they hired lefthanded pitcher Fernando Valenzuela , whose popularity with fans become known as “Fernandomania”. Since Diamondbacks can’t count on the next Valenzuela to draw in Hispanic fans, their efforts will have to take another form.

So how can the Diamondback cater to the Latino public?? According to president Derrick Hall, “You have to have bilingual signs. You have to have bilingual employees.” They are currently hiring Spanish speaking ticket booth operators “So if they’re not comfortable communicating in English, there is someone they can speak with.” They also try to find Spanish-speaking operators and tour guides, but they are “hard to keep” because they are in such high demand in the area.

Other efforts done by the Diamondbacks include reaching out through Hispanics through their media with special promotions, working with Univision and Spanish language newspapers such as La Voz and TV y Mas. The Diamondbacks broadcast all 162 regular season games on radio in Spanish. They also offer the largest Spanish TV package in Major League Baseball with 50 games shown on a Phoenix UHF channel. For the past two seasons they have staged Hispanic bands for post game concerts, which Hall said has drawn “huge crowds”.

Hall said one mistake that’s often made by baseball teams is to promote only Hispanic players to the Hispanic fans. Although they might have special connection to certain players, Hispanic fans are committed to the entire team.