The U.S. Census Bureau recently reported that sometime in 2020, the number of minority children in our country will outnumber white children and that around 2040, the total number of minorities will outnumber whites. Other data indicates that four out of ten millennials are non-white and that generation Z (1995-2012) is about 50%.
Yet another report suggests that if one were to include other communities like mixed marriages, LGBTQ, etc., the collective number of minorities will exceed the white population very shortly. The point of all this collective data should be a wake-up call for marketers to rethink how and where they’re placing their efforts.
The different demographics of your audience could also mean changes in their brand loyalty and preferences. If you’re not aware of this and adapting to it, you face the possibility of losing a growing market share.
Why Will That Happen?
Since 1965, we’ve welcomed 40 million immigrants. About 50% were Hispanic and another 30% Asian. Currently, about 40% of our population is made up of minority groups but only 5.2% of marketing and advertising dollars are directed there. Similarly, about 25% of our population have disabilities while only 1% of advertising is targeted to them.
And while spending in all of these areas is increasing, studies strongly suggest rethinking and possibly reframing future budgets that reflect the changing demographic.
How Can Marketing Capture The Minority Sector?
One way to help achieve this balance is to depict the different ethnic groups in ways that aren’t patronizing. Content is important as well, even if companies employ people from these different groups. Try to avoid using stereotypes.
Done sensitively and conscientiously, ethnic advertising will not only generate brand affinity and purchase intent among target audiences, but it will also educate and resonate with other consumers as well.
As with all marketing and communication efforts, be sure to track and measure results. Consider joining the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), Their Alliance for Inclusive and Multicultural Marketing collaborated with NBC Universal to create a Cultural Insights Impact Measure (CIIM). Already a member of ANA? Check out CIIM and use it.
More Ammo To Build Minority Custom
The investment in marketing to these growing groups is not only worthwhile, but also important to a company’s future success. Whether it results in a larger budget or a shifting of resources is your call.
Need more ammo to sell senior management and your board? Last year, Nielsen reported that more Hispanic-Americans spend an hour or more daily on social media than whites – 52% as opposed to 38%. And Nielsen said they share the content five times more often than non-Hispanics.
90% of African American households, according to another study, have smartphones as opposed to 84% of the general population. Streaming and social networking were also found to be higher among African Americans. Some chapters of the Public Relations Society of America also have multicultural/diversity subcommittees.
Probably the most critical thing to consider adding to any company’s marketing staff are people representing some of these different groups. They can be invaluable in shaping the perspective and understanding companies seek. The same would be true in identifying, employing and leveraging influencers of color, too.
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