Being an ERG leader helped Maria Cristina Rios advance in her career
MÁS EN ESTA SECCIÓN
Maria Cristina Rios is a Latina entrepreneur, who was recently installed as the new president of Prospanica’s Philadelphia chapter.
As the founder and owner of Rios Marketing, Rios helps businesses achieve success by developing data-driven, measurable marketing and communication plans to increase sales, drive traffic and build brand affinity.
The company helps established firms see the value in the Hispanic consumer market as the next level of growth for their company by developing Hispanic marketing plans.
Rios is no stranger to the Hispanic market, as prior to taking the leap into her entrepreneurial journey, she made her name at various Fortune 500 companies.
“I spent the majority of my career at Macy’s,” she said during Prospanica Philadelphia’s ERG and Leadership Diversity Summit on Wednesday, July 26.
While at Macy’s, Rios had the opportunity of developing into an ERG leader.
“One of the things that we accomplished was bringing a number of the organization’s different functions together,” said Rios.
There were separate ERG groups for macys.com, Macy’s merchandising group, and Macy’s Inc. With her leadership, they were able to come together and develop programs across five buildings in New York city, also partnering with Bloomingdale’s.
“One of the business impacts that we had was developing insights and creating programs that helped the merchants create a line for Latina shoppers, specifically,” said Rios.
During her tenure as Director of Multicultural Marketing & Media Strategy at Macy’s, Rios learned that Latinas compose of one-third of shoppers who come into the store.
Understanding the prevalence of that demographic, Macy’s would launch the Thalía Sodi collection. It’s named after the Mexican-born singer, songwriter, producer, actress and entrepreneur often referred to as the “Queen of Latin Pop.”
The Thalía Sodi collection featured a multitude of apparel and accessories.
“The collection not only helped the buyers in our group participate and have a voice into what was being bought for our community, but it also helped them develop initiatives for in-store promotions,” Rios said.
In that role as Director of Multicultural Marketing & Media Strategy, Rios was able to promote the new collection to not only the Latina audiences, but others.
As she looks back at the experiences she had at Macy’s and with ERGs, she can’t help but think how valuable it would have been if she would have had an ERG Summit to attend, to help better equip her to drive her initiatives forward.
Upon arriving to Philadelphia and attending an ERG Summit for the first time, Rios saw just how valuable it is as an opportunity to learn from others and network.
“And I also felt that the skill set and the professional development that happened was very important for ERG leaders,” added Rios.
That was the very purpose of the 2023 Prospanica Philadelphia ERG and Leadership Diversity Summit.
This year’s event featured a keynote, as well as multiple panel discussions and workshops. Each portion of the Summit provided attendees with valuable information about ERGs and the value of diverse leadership in the workforce, regardless of the industry.