Instructions Not Included: Comedy Proof of Latin@ Buying Power

instructions not includedI’ve written about the growing buying power of the Latin@ demographic a couple of times before, but it’s suddenly come into even greater focus with the prominence of a new Mexican comedy-drama film, Instructions Not Included (in Spanish: No se aceptan devoluciones). If you have yet to hear of it, that’s okay – you may not be the film’s target audience. But its rise to setting the box office record for a Spanish language film is no accident. Let’s take a closer look at why.

Record Setting All Around

Surprise – not only has Instructions Not Included set a box office record for Spanish language films as the highest grossing ever released in the United States, passing even Pan’s Labyrinth. Instructions Not Included has also climbed to third place on the chart overall. The story? A Mexican bachelor who suddenly finds himself with a child and has to learn how to be a father.

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What Does It Mean?

Believe it or not, Instructions Not Included owes its success to the rapidly growing bicultural market in the U.S. With more and more Americans as well as Latin@s living in the U.S. identifying as bi- or multicultural, the target audience for a film like Instructions Not Included is actually growing. With the Latin@ market worth $1 trillion, the film’s success just goes to show the value in reaching out to niche markets.

The star of the film, Eugenio Derbez, is a huge name in Mexico and with other Central and South American audiences. Derbez, who also directed the film, provided a built-in Latin@ fan base in the U.S. for the Instructions Not Included, but the film’s underlying themes of biculturalism can be seen even in the trailer. Simply put, Instructions Not Included is a film that reflects the time in which we live.

What has your brand done to reach out to niche markets? What kinds of successes have you seen?

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Tree is a somewhat nomadic graduate student pursuing an MFA in Poetry and Literary Translation from Drew University. A self-identified “diplobrat,” she spent over 16 years living as an expat in countries like Guatemala, Bolivia, and Tanzania. Tree graduated from Smith College in 2012 with a degree in Spanish Language and Literature, a minor in Studio Art, and a concentration in Landscape Studies. In between writing poetry for school and content for CEM, she dabbles in goat herding and freelancing. Other interests include reading, watercolor painting, gardening, and traveling.

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