2020 was a year of highs and lows. For marketers who have always maintained a commitment to diversity and inclusion, the calls for social justice strengthened their resolve. For many others, however, the momentum of acknowledging the problem gave way to frantic, reactive statements that quickly fizzled out or failed. A year later, companies realized their approach to diversity and inclusion couldn’t be summed up in a social media post. Instead, it required a concerted, internal and external effort to fundamentally change who they are and how they present in the world.
There are concerns, however, that the push for representation will wane. That multicultural marketing will be used as a tactic and not a strategy requiring an investment in research, time, and attention. But the next generation of leaders, particularly Gen Z, the first majority-minority generation, is poised to reshape multicultural marketing as we know it. Gen Z is consuming the brands that align with their values, and they are making it clear to employers as they enter the workforce what their expectations are around diversity and inclusion.
In the past, multicultural marketing has typically focused on Hispanics, not representing the full diversity of the multicultural diaspora. Companies have started paying more attention to their multicultural audiences in the last couple of years. They now include Hispanics and Black and Asian consumers, who may be smaller in size but are enjoying increased purchasing power and population growth, as well as stepping outside of race to include ability and the intersectionality of sexual orientation and gender identity.
The first step to reaching these audiences is identifying the gaps in your data. Most organizations are surprised to find they have more insights than they thought but just haven't connected the dots.
LaToya Christian, Managing Partner at GroupM, returns to The New Mainstream podcast to discuss the evolution of multicultural marketing over the past two years and why it’s not too late for brands to begin their multicultural marketing journey in 2022.