Multicultural audiences have become the fastest growing segment of consumers, with a growing demographic of more than 2.3 million people per year. According to Forbes, by 2042 no single ethic group will be a majority, and America will truly fulfill our “melting pot” title. The upcoming multicultural generation, and specifically Latinos, will be more adaptive, diverse, and dynamic than any before. They’ll feel deep ties to their cultural heritage while still becoming fully immersed in modern culture, with vastly different lifestyles and product preferences than the general Caucasian population.
Although it’s easy to let marketing geared toward different cultures fall to the side, and focus instead on greater mainstream demographics, doing so could be detrimental to a marketing campaign. For most agencies and brands, multicultural marketing should be an “all hands on deck” situation, where extra attention to detail and analysis is employed to ensure each asset and piece of data is reflective of the targeted culture. Here, we’ve covered five big mistakes to avoid when creating a multicultural marketing strategy and a few suggestions on how to avoid them.
Mistake #1: Leaving “multi-cultural competency” out of the job description
When hiring new team members, from entry-level to executives, it is critical that cultural competency be in their repertoire. Even if it’s just a broad understanding and a willingness to learn more about each market segment, these people will be tremendous assets to have when it comes time to strategize and create.
Mistake #2: Skimping out on data
Hard data may well be the most valuable part of your strategy, especially when trying to determine the best channels to use with your target audiences. Make sure your specialists know exactly what to look for and how to find it, so your data supports the overall campaign.
Mistake #3: Relying on only one language
Most members of a multicultural audience are bilingual, transitioning seamlessly from Spanish to English multiple times throughout their day and using Spanglish with other members of their culture. Spanglish, though difficult to perfect, may be the best way to secure your audience’s attention, and build trust with them. Make sure you have a native speaker who can review all assets before they’re published.
Mistake #4: Bypassing external sources
Consider hiring a third party to give an expert audit of your final products, from the language to the imagery, and everything in between. If you have the means, this third and final evaluation may be the final touch you need to prevent a cultural catastrophe.
Mistake #5: Losing sight of your brand’s voice, tone, and message
Multicultural campaigns are often vastly different from your usual campaigns, but don’t let those differences cause your true brand messaging to change. Use your brand expression guide throughout the process. Maintain your voice, tone, and messaging so consumers will recognize your brand no matter what cultural setting they’re in. Keeping that consistency will help build your brand across platforms more effectively.
For more information about marketing to multicultural audiences, check out the white paper, Cultura Ambidextrous, by VP, Multicultural Strategy, Joe Ray. Download now!