Hispanics are on track to becoming the largest ethnic minority group in the U.S. this year. Not only does this have serious implications for the presidential election, but also for brands seeking new markets to combat stagnating sales. But it’s not just Hispanics. Population growth among African American and Asian American consumers continues to rise, as the population of Non-Hispanic Whites flatline.

Rise of Multicultural Sample

The data sends a clear message. Growth lies in building meaningful connections with multicultural consumers, and the only way to do that is to understand the cultural nuances that drive their purchase behavior. So, marketers should look to sample.

From vernacular to traditions, technology use to voter preference, the insights gleaned from surveying these audiences will inform forward-thinking marketing strategy and power their success.

But knowing that the need is real is only half the battle. How can sample companies rise to the occasion and meet the demand?

Seizing the Opportunity

As ethnicity in America evolves, understanding what that means in the context of the sample industry is essential for sample providers as they prepare to service clients looking to level up their multicultural marketing efforts.

To do that successfully, sample providers must employ the most innovative methodologies available to capture insights from diverse audiences effectively. Many sample companies recruit the general population and get the minority segment by natural fallout. Even though this is an excellent method of recruitment, it may fail to achieve real representation for minorities.

While the term programmatic is on tips of the tongues of every marketer and researcher, in all honesty, a programmatic sample approach will not recruit niche segments such as unacculturated Hispanics or Asian Americans.

Surprisingly, a traditional panel is the best method to recruit niche segments, specifically, a double opt-in panel that caters to a particular segment. For example, when targeting Hispanics in the U.S., panels should offer a Spanish option for the unacculturated segment as well as an English option for the bilingual and acculturated segments. Because the survey is relevant to respondents, engagement is higher. The same tactics apply when engaging Asian American consumers.

A combination of high-recruitment with API and a traditional panel covers all the bases.

Navigating the New Mainstream

Despite the data, marketers still have to make a case for multicultural marketing with senior leadership. And for companies who deploy multicultural marketing campaigns, most of those dollars are not reaching the intended targets or offends them with stereotypical, tone-deaf messages. Marketing to U.S. Hispanics, for example, is not just about speaking Spanish.

Secondly, third-generation Hispanics and beyond don’t watch Spanish speaking media and the dollars that brands spend to reach Hispanics there are misplaced as they fail to deliver results. The same goes for English speaking Asian Americans who are not attracted to traditional marketing methods.

Now, more than ever, brands have a unique opportunity to serve culturally sensitive advertising validated by sound research that meets both business and marketing objectives. The alternative? Brands will spend millions of dollars in marketing to the new mainstream (multicultural consumers) to little effect. Sample companies have a big opportunity to customize panels to diverse audiences to improve engagement and produce valuable consumer insights.

The future is multicultural. The only question is, will you be ready for it?