ShapardResearch is proud to announce that it has begun a partnership that will enable Oklahoma based companies to better connect and market to Oklahoma's growing Hispanic population.ShapardResearch and Hispanic Focus Unlimited, a research firm that specializes in moderating Spanish language focus groups, recently partnered on a Spanish language study for an Oklahoma client that was interested in ways they could improve their reach in the Hispanic market.When Ruben Cuellar, CEO of Hispanic Focus Unlimited, entered the project, he brought with him more than 15 years worth of experience conducting research focused on the Hispanic culture and language.ShapardResearch has excellent focus group facilities and resources on site and, for more than eight years, ShapardResearch has conducted focus group recruitment for Oklahoma-based companies.ShapardResearch and Hispanic Focus Unlimited both brought a lot to the table, and their combined knowledge and resources made the study a success. After conducting the study and researching population trends in Oklahoma, ShapardResearch and Hispanic Focus Unlimited have decided to continue the partnership.According to the most recent Census Bureau data available, 9% of Oklahoma's 3.8 million residents are Latinos. Between 2000 and 2010, Oklahoma's population grew by about 9%. During that time, Oklahoma’s Hispanic population grew 85%, accounting for about half the state's overall growth.Ruben Cuellar, CEO of Hispanic Focus Unlimited, said that any time you see a population growth of 85 percent over 10 years, “you better pay attention.”“This kind of growth represents a tremendous value and an open market,” Cuellar said. “Hispanic people are working, they are earning an income, and these are viable dollars that any business can capture if they focus on the specific needs of that particular ethnic niche.”Developing an understanding of the Hispanic culture and language are important to a successful marketing campaign that the Hispanic population will be receptive to, Cuellar said.“All research tells us that the Hispanic market is the fastest growing ethnic group in the state,” Bill Shapard, CEO of ShapardResearch, said. “This partnership allows us to offer a one stop shop for business seeking to learn how to better communicate with this emerging, untapped market.”Cuellar said that the time he spent in Oklahoma has led him to believe that Oklahoma companies don’t understand the Hispanic culture.“I think that through this partnership, ShapardResearch and Hispanic Focus Unlimited can help the Oklahoma business community understand the viable market that they are missing out on,” Cuellar said.