Multicultural Marketing in a Digital Age

So many times we see marketing to minorities go terribly wrong. It is essential for marketers and advertisers to understand the audience with whom they are working.  The digital age has both complicated and simplified this process. Minority audiences are innately different from one another and their use of emerging media as a result is different.  Therefore, there is no approach to effectively targeting all minority audiences. Each minority group should be segmented in order to effectively target one group.

In this post I will focus on the Hispanic audience. In the 2010 Census, there were 1 million more Hispanics in the U.S than was expected and 50% of the Hispanics counted were under the age of 26. The slideshare Digital Media & Multicultural Marketing: Hispanic  African American & Asian American Populations breaks down how multicultural marketing and digital media intersect. The slides cite a 2010 AOL Cyberstudy which found that a larger percentage of the Hispanic market were early adopters online,  considered a tech expert by friends and family, and keep up with the latest technology. Additionally 72% of Hispanics trust the opinion of an online stranger through product reviews.

In researching the Hispanic audience one of the most important things to note is acculturation. This can affect the channel, language, and message you use when communicating to these audiences.


After conducting research you will find that the audience is unacculturated, acculturated, or partially acculturated. Forty –six percent of the Hispanic market is unacculturated. They are first generation, Spanish speakers who have lived in the U.S. for an average of 7 years and maintain culture. It is important to note in the chart above, even the partially acculturated and unacculturated groups keep up with the latest technology and are considered tech experts by friends and family.

slide-74-728 In addition to considering acculturation marketers should take note of holidays and cultural events as well as language. If you’re marketing to different audiences you might want to consider code-switching, translations, and photography. These things can completely alter the reaction and reception to your multicultural marketing particularly to Hispanics.

Are there any other things you think must be considered when marketing to Hispanic audiences?


How Do You Know What Your Marketing is Doing?

Do you know what your marketing is doing? The Adobe banner ads and commercials get me every single time. I always stop and think, “Do I really know what my marketing is doing?” My answer is yes. I know because of analytics, Google and social media analytics. One of my responsibilities at work is to manage our social media. Aside from that, I am responsible for creating a weekly report on what has been happening with our website and social media pages. So, yes, on any given basis one can ask me how many visitors our website had in a week and I can answer.

Google and social media analytics are the most intriguing of all of the emerging media . They  allow marketers to see and know how their marketing has been affecting traffic their website, what pages were most visited, how long a visitor stayed on a page, how many visitors intended to come to your website and so much more. Analytics allows you to get a whole picture of how your audiences interact with your emerging media.

However, before you can look to answer these questions you have to do one very important thing,  You must identify what your goal is.  My course lesson this week gives some examples of questions you should ask before beginning to use analytics.

What is your goal?
Do you want to track how people are sharing your Web site?

Do you want to track a specific social media campaign?
Do you want to try to get a pulse on the sentiment of the conversations that are occurring? Are you interested in trends related to a social media phenomenon. 

Here are six steps to help you get results with business analytics After identifying your goals, you are able to connect business objectives with your marketing. Doing this allows you to be able to understand how your marketing falls into the big picture in terms of your company. One company that does a good job of tying business objectives is Best Buy.

What do you think is the most important metric to measure using Google Analytics?

Nike Makes It Count with Storytelling


Everyone loves a good story. No, not a book, television show, or even a movie, but a story. You know, the real reason the main character is doing that one thing that you know will lead to that next bad thing happening. We have long escaped the time when we accept being talked at and pitched to. Instead we prefer being heard and engaged and what better way to do this than social media. A 2011 Nielsen report found that Internet users spend 21.3% of their time on social networking sites. Social media has made this task easier for brands to accomplish. This week’s course lesson said, “The bottom line in this evolution is a shift from a one-way conversation to a two-way dialogue that is built on influence and recommendation.” The way you engage with consumers affects their perception of your brand. Some brands consistently engage their audiences in new and innovative ways. One such brand is Nike.

The Nike #makeitcount Twitter and Instagram campaign tells the story of how one man and a friend who made it count. Casey and Max were hired to film a set of commercials, but instead they took the money and traveled to 13 countries in 10 days. They filmed the entire time and put it together to create the campaign video. It features quotes from many great minds a midst Max running, back flipping, and jumping off cliffs. It is inspiration at its finest for anyone who is watching regardless of age, sex, or gender.


The director, Casey first approached the task of filming by asking himself, “If I could do anything in the world and make it count what would I do?” His vision was to forget about what Nike was, forget about sneakers, forget everything, and to figure out what it meant to him. Casey did this with understanding that, nothing takes the place of story. He said, “Tell a story and people will care. Above image quality, cinematography or anything else. Just tell a great story.” The film was viewed more than one and a half million times on YouTube in less than three days.


inline-casey-neistatTell a good, I mean really good story, and you will be remembered, because after all who doesn’t love a good story that inspires and convinces you to seize the moment and truly make it count.

Do you think social media is the best place for storytelling or would the corporate website or blog be better?

The Viral Revolution

Viral. The Merriam Webster online dictionary’s first definition of viral is, “of relating to, or caused by a virus. When did this word become good? A few years ago I am sure if someone heard oh it’s viral they would assume that the person speaking was sick and afflicted with some sort of illness. Today, however viral has another meaning, a positive meaning that has become the gold standard for marketers and advertisers alike.  The second Merriam Webster online definition is, quickly and widely spread or popularized especially by person-to-person electronic communication. This week’s course lesson stated, “Initially viral marketing relied heavily on e-mail, which became enhanced with embedded video. Today’s viral marketers however are exploring ways of using social networking sites to pass on their messages.”

Viral marketing is a great opportunity for marketers because all they have to do is create the message and post it. At the same time though, it’s a little scary because what you think is great content might not resonate with the audience whom you’re hoping will share the content. Additionally, viral marketing remains one of the most effective IMC strategies to date.

In looking at the year 2013 I was interested in seeing what were the best viral video campaigns of 2013. We can all remember individual occurrences, Oreo’s you can still dunk in the dark for example, but I was particularly curious about video campaigns. The most popular video of 2013 award went to the Dove Real Beauty Sketches. I remember seeing this video and being very moved by it so it definitely was a powerful video. According to audience measurement service Visible Measures, the Dove Real Beauty Sketch was the most watched internet video of 2013. The video referenced the beauty products industry and culture, but didn’t appear to be selling anything other than a concept or message. For this reason, it was successful and connected with audiences making it go viral.

What do you think about the viral revolution? Do you think it is here to stay or a passing trend?

The Mobile Connection to Millenials

The mobile medium holds so much opportunity for  brands to connect and engage with their audiences. On the heels of my last post, I found an article about how Toyota is using mobile to target millennials. According to our course lesson, “Mobile marketing is one of the first completely new marketing vehicles to come along in over 50 years, and it’s quickly becoming a primary means of reaching and building relationships with customers – especially the highly sought after youth demographic.” Good Job Toyota! You are on the right path. Mobile is an effective medium for two reasons. First, it’s highly personal. Lastly, it’s rich but simple. Because of these two things, it is effective in targeting and communicating to millenials.  It seems like automotive brands are ahead of the pack when it comes to using emerging media to target their audiences particularly using mobile.

In January, Toyota launched a new mobile campaign to highlight the all-new 2014 Corolla and lets consumers engage in a two-way conversation with the as unit to mimic the experience of Entune Audio. The campaign has run on both tablets and smartphones for iOS and Android. Vice President of Nuance the creator of the technology, Mike McSherry hinted at the fact that Toyota’s ads were  proliferated across dozens, hundreds, maybe even thousands of apps” such as Angry Birds or the New York Times. Check out the ad below.

In both product technology and advertising, automakers are using real-time data to simplify and contextualize a user’s online and offline brand experiences.” Mollie Spilman, executive vice president of global sales and marketing at Millenial Media, creator of ad said, “The increased connectivity within vehicles – such as mobile, voice-activated systems, touchscreen and Bluetooth – has significantly changed the consumer experience and offers advertisers new and exciting ways to interact with their audience.”As companies continue to do-away will traditional banner ads in exchange for ads using new technologies we can only wonder where marketing will go next.

Do you see more companies using mobile ad campaigns to market in the future?



An Integrated Approach to Video Ads

Normally when I’m on the internet, ads whether static banner ads or video ads have no effect on me. I don’t stop, I don’t click, I barely even read. Strangely enough, last week I had the very experience. of stopping, clicking , and viewing.  I glimpsed the  2013 Toyota Camry Thrill Ride: “Action/Reaction 1 video banner ad and something made me watch it. I think it was the fact that the people in the ad seemed to be having the time of their lives and I wanted to know more. After watching the video I  remembered being at an auto show last November and seeing Toyota offer thrill rides to attendees. Check out the video version of the ad below.

Banner ads and video ads are the future of web advertising.  Video ads are digital and enable ease of design, manipulation and posting on the web. A video ad can be a commercial or even YouTube video trimmed down to the most exciting parts. Because of that it is fairly easy to integrated video and banner ad videos into your marketing mix. In the case of Toyota, they used a YouTube video, added some graphics and created a video ad. Despite a difference in size and format the video ad was clear and crisp providing me with the same rich viewing experience I had while viewing the commercial on YouTube.

Toyota definitely took an integrated approach to this campaign. The focus on the experience of the consumer is clear and is a connection between the off-line thrill rides as well as the YouTube video and the video banner ad. They all serve to show how a Camry can be so much more than a family car, it can be your connection to thrills and adventures.

Toyota has seen the benefits of video ads and was even a part of the pilot group of brands Google used in launching  their plus page ads. The article How Toyota Used Google + Post Ads to Launch a Car delves into how Toyota leveraged the use of banner ads and video ads to build conversation around the new Corolla.

What elements of banner and video ads do you think are most important in catching the consumers eye?

Website Design and Communication Objectives

call-objective_crop1You need a new website.  You have no idea how to design one, so you have sent out an RFP to design firms, and selected the one you like. You have already determined what the vision for your corporate website is, but what are your objectives? Wait, what’s an objective? Not sure? Well, it’s time to sit down and think about how your vision can translate to concrete objectives. In his 2013 post, Defining a Vision: Making Sure Your Work Matters Russ Starke said that defining the company vision is about more than solidifying a mission statement. It is about defining what interacting with their company will be like in one, three, or even more than five years.

Having already defined your vision, it is time to decide what it is going to take for this vision to be accomplished. Is it going to take people coming to my site, or talking about my site, or do these people need to actively do something? Answering these questions is only the first step in creating communication objectives. A communication objective is defined as the desired communication effect, which must always include brand awareness and brand attitude for any marketing communication, and brand purchase intention for promotion. Below are some sample communication objectives to help you determine which are best for your company’s new website.


  • Creating awareness
  • Generating interest
  • Distributing information
  • Creating/maintaining a strong brand image
  • Stimulating trial
  • Site Traffic, Time , Quality of Visitors
  • Positive Search Results
  • Inbound Links
  • Inquiries
  • Leads
  • Signups / Subscriptions
  • Customer Service resolutions
  • % Conversion
  • New Customer Acquisition
  • Likelihood to Recommend — Net Promoter Score
  • Lifetime Customer Value
  • Brand Awareness
  • Brand Consideration
  • Brand Loyalty / Affinity
  • Brand Perception
  • Customer Service Satisfaction

Now that you have an idea of what types of objectives there are, which ones stand out as best for your company?

The Internet: An Ecosystem of Emerging Media

social media and internetRecently the internet turned 25 years old. British computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee published his proposal which is now considered the birth of the World Wide Web. His intent was to make the plethora of information at his institute, more accessible to the scientists there by using hypertext to share information. The internet was the first form of emerging media and it paved the way for so many others.

Emerging media is important because it has changed the way we learn, communicate, and share. It has opened a new door for companies and people alike. Today the internet has all but replaced traditional media such as encyclopedia’s and traditional libraries. It is home to an ecosystem equipped with  social and learning communities as well as new age newspapers which make it possible for people across the globe to share ideas, form bonds and so much more.  The internet has made it possible for  social media, Wikipedia, email, and blogs to exist and become the integral part of our lives that it is today. In 2013, the internet had almost 3 million users, using social media, viewing videos, and searching for information.

Above all else, emerging media has changed how we interact with companies. It has changed how we see the companies we solicit, and give feedback. Today Yelp and social media provide the forum for complaints and kudos of visitors. It gives brands the opportunity to address issues and solve them, and improve the brands image.  Social media in particular is the prime way people voice their complaints with a brand.

Recently, I attempted to dine at a restaurant near my home. After waiting for about an hour my family and I left. Immediately my sister said, I’m going to send an email to tell them how terrible the service has been. I agreed and decided I would tweet them on Twitter and post on their Facebook wall. Up to now, my sister’s email is unanswered and so are my social media posts. Needless to say we haven’t been back to that restaurant and there’s a Yelp post explaining why this restaurant isn’t awesome.  Initially, I thought it odd that in this day and digital age a negative post actually went unanswered, but it still happens. In a Wharton business school article it said, “approximately 70% of customer service complaints made on Twitter go unanswered.”   Interesting since the majority of people who give a brand feedback through social media expect a response, less they react like I do and blackball the company.

Social media is just the tip of the iceberg, when it comes to emerging media, but it has a significant impact on how customers receive feedback from companies.  Amazing when you think about how a little thing called the internet, started so a group of people could access information, provided the foundation for email, social media, blogs, smartphones, and many other emerging media.

What do you think is the most significant impact emerging media has had on the world?