abc, food truck marketing, food truck rental, Uncategorized

The Multicultural Marketing Divide: Who Is the Real Mainstream Consumer?

Most years are evolutionary, but few are revolutionary — and honestly, 2013 was hardly transformational. In many ways, a stagnant business landscape was affected by a deadlocked political atmosphere and highly divergent perceptions of critical national issues — such as health care and immigration reform. In other words, some embrace change; some embrace legacy — even to the detriment of their own businesses’ vital signs.

Some of the trepidation seen among business executives revolves around defining their target consumers. Whereas most of America is still made up of white non-Hispanic families, the vast majority of future growth emanates from diverse cultures — such as Hispanic, Asian and African Americans among others. The difficulty lies partly in “marketing science” and partly on corporate legacy and priorities.

There are certainly many corporations who have increased their spending and focus on high-growth groups such as Hispanic, Asian and African American. According to Ad Age’s2013 Hispanic Fact Pack, for example, the top 10 investors in the “new mainstream” consumer spent $1.25 billion on “Hispanic media” during 2012 alone. This is up from $956 million in 2011 — a 31 percent change year over year! At the top of the list are Procter & Gamble, McDonalds and T-Mobile, who each spent more than $100 million on Hispanic targeted advertising.

Overall, media spending growth from 2011 to 2012 was 3.2 percent, yet growth in overall Hispanic ad spending was 11.1 percent — that’s nearly $8 billion and well over three times the growth of ad spending overall. Nonetheless, the ad spending on the Hispanic segment is reportedly far below this segment’s proportion of the population (about 6 percent of total ad spending, compared to 18 percent of total population) and much less than their proportion of population growth, which has been around 60 percent in recent years. As Hispanic media spending increases, will it begin to blend with the overall spend? Or will “Hispanic-focused media” continue its ascent at the current rates?

One emerging theory has been the discussion of “Total Market,” which — although somewhat vague and subject to interpretation — generally refers to addressing multiple cultural segments (including white non-Hispanic) which roll-up into the aggregate consumer population.

The discussion is interesting, but it’s also peculiar. It appears the same proponents of multicultural marketing are promoting the Total Market concept. But those previously charged with addressing the “General Market” (a term used to describe the mainstream consumer) are not participating in the Total Market dialog in any meaningful way. Therefore, despite the recent growth in spending and buying power of multicultural audiences, multicultural marketers and those examining the general market do not appear to be on the same page.

The risk of the Total Market approach is that it’s also too broad — cultural segments get blended in and compromised within the overall milieu of the marketing mix. In some ways, this seems a defensive approach for brands in order to not get left out — “playing not to lose,” if you will.

The political landscape seems to contribute to the ambivalence among marketers. For instance, the fact that immigration reform has been severely stalled in congress seems to reflect that many leaders (and the public at large I suppose) are in denial as to the emerging role that cultural segments are playing and will play in our business economy. Perhaps it’s an excuse for business executives not to get more aggressive and maintain the status quo.As stated in prior blogs, I find the continued delay of immigration reform especially disappointing, given the fact that we have a multicultural individual in the White House and that 71 percent of the Hispanic vote provided a clear mandate to reform outdated immigration laws.

But I have hope for next year. I believe that as businesses and marketers, we can free ourselves of the gridlocked national perspective on immigration to recognize the importance of a multicultural audience. Here are some tangible gains to be made next year:

    • A leading Hispanic or Multicultural agency and their brand representative will dare to bring a legitimately multicultural message into mainstream media. There’s even a chance that the splash will be made during the Super Bowl.

 

    • One or more Latino, Asian or African Americans will be appointed Chief Marketing Officer in Fortune 500 companies next year. I believe that CEO’s and institutional investors get it — they will see the same vision and want someone to lead their company to where the growth is.

 

 

    • Bicultural media will shift into the next gear as “experimental media” proves itself. Next year should see the fruits of companies like Univision/ABC’s Fusion, Nuvo and MTV Tr3s — hopefully with quantitative backing — that lead to further investment in that potentially high-growth space.

 

 

  • Immigration reform (if and when it passes) will spur additional acceptance and momentum within the multicultural/new mainstream marketing and business initiatives.

 

As 2014 takes shape, the question of “who is the mainstream consumer” will be asked more frequently. This New Mainstream consumer is one who increasingly embraces its heritage and chooses to indulge in multiple media within a multicultural context. Whether marketers embrace it or not — held back by legacy and risk aversion if they do not — American consumers will become increasingly diverse in 2014 and will recognize the evolving face of our nation.

The time has come for CMOs to do what chairmen and institutional investors want them to: go for the growth and erode their competitors’ market share — increasingly, that means trade legacy marketing tactics for in-culture targeting.

 

Cesar M. Melgoza

CEO and founder, Geoscape

 

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abc, food truck marketing, food truck rental, Uncategorized

How to combine content creation, sponsorship and experiential marketing to impact your bottom line.

For many years, creating content meant making a TV spot

 

These days anyone can create content, but not all content is worth creating.

As the cloud gets cloudier, companies are challenged to rise above the turbulence of advertising and online chatter to reach the sunny calm where brands, media, influencers, and consumers work together to create meaning, value, and connection.

 

I’ll be interested, if you’ll be interesting

 

As brands such as Red Bull, Levis, Absolut, Coca Cola, Harley Davidson, etc. have successfully shown, the best way to market any good, service, brand or place is by providing experiences and content that is so engaging, consumers and the media can’t help but pay attention.

Move successfully past the content marketing mainstream and combine the three hottest marketing trends:

 

Content Creation

Experiential Marketing

Sponsorship

 

Content

According to a 2011 study by the Content Marketing Institute, content marketing is one of the top-growing fields with an increasing number of marketers relying on content strategy for overall success.

The objectives of content strategy are:

Brand awareness – 69%

Customer acquisition – 68%

Lead generation – 67%

Customer retention/loyalty – 62%

 

Content Marketing Institute, 2011

 

Experiential

Asked “How important is a previous unique experience when deciding what specific brands you use in the future?”, over 62% said a unique brand experience was very important; only 1% disagreed.

“Best Experience Brands”, global study by Jack Morton Worldwide, 2011

 

Experiential

In a study, 85% of respondents said that participating in experiential marketing would cause them to talk about a product or brand and 1 in 4 marketing executives believe that event marketing provides the best return on investment EventView, 2006

 

Sponsorship

Sponsorship is the fastest growing form of marketing according to the International Events Group (IEG), which is projecting a significant sponsorship spending growth (4.8%) for 2013, even in the face of overall economic volatility.

“International event Partnerships, Sponsorship and Fundraising”, by Nadia Laice,

 

Sponsorship

And it pays off for the brands. Corporations that consistently invested in sponsorship outperformed market averages and those who spent at an above average level outperformed those who spent at a below average level.

“Does sponsorship pay off? An examination of the relationship between investment in sponsorship and business performance” International Journal of Sport Marketing & Sponsorship

 

69% of Canadians said they would prefer to do business with a brand that supports their favorite causes Today’s consumers are interested in a brand’s values. They’re looking for brands with a conscience, brands that are good citizens who support the community in a fun and engaging way. 69% of Canadians said they would prefer to do business with a brand that supports their favorite causes, 53% said the same for arts / cultural events. Interestingly, Canada is the only nation in the world where sports do not account for the greatest number of proposal requests or allocations. The number one sector in Canada is fairs, festivals and exhibitions, followed by the arts at number two “Consumer Sponsorship Rankings”, Partnership Group, 2012

 

What to do?

Brands have to create emotional content that tells a story to impact consumers’ behaviors, attitudes, or perceptions of their brand in a positive way – content that is not about the product and not a sales pitch.

Content that is driven by shared values and a vision to make the world a better place. Content that engages all five senses. Content that asks questions instead of promoting products. Content that enables communication, stimulates discussion and brings people together. Content the consumer identifies with and wants to share with friends.

 

 

Cultural content – value promotion at its best All this can be achieved in one fell sweep: Developing custom-made, brand-owned, cultural content and cultural events. Putting the logo of your brand on the catalogue of an exhibition or show is a step in the right direction but doesn’t compare to the impact of developing and owning content or an event.

 

Culture?

In this context “culture” is defined as an inclusive concept, encompassing not just fine arts, but design, crafts, sports, leisure, community-oriented projects and even cause-driven events. In short: content and experiences that elevate the human spirit and bring people together.

 

The content matrix

 

The content you develop engages your audience in various dimensions. For the purpose of this article, we’ll focus on only two.

 

Immersion

 

Product/Service Value

Related driven

Absorption

 

The first (horizontal) dimension has product/service related content—that is to say the informative, instructional rational kind—on one side of the equation; and value driven—speaking to our emotions and triggering the hedonistic tendencies of the audience—on the other.

 

The second (vertical) dimension describes the level of engagement, necessary to experience the content. Absorption, on one end of the spectrum, describes the passive consumption of content, with a low level of engagement, addressing only 1 or 2 senses. Immersive content on the other side of the spectrum requires active participation, engages all five senses and takes the audience to a different world.

 

Content in the bottom left corner has the least potential to generate an emotional connection with your brand; e.g. product manual.

 

Content in the top right corner is the most interesting for your audience.

It immerses the participant, is not a sales pitch, and ideally engages all

5 senses. This kind of content has the most potential to create an emotional bond with your brand; e.g. Red Bull Music Academy

 

Examples

 

6 simple steps

Let’s look at the necessary steps to develop engaging cultural content for your brand

 

Step 1

Branding 101 – What are your values? Who are your customers?

 

Anything you do should be based on, and guided by, your vision and values and an in-depth knowledge of your customers. If you’re an urban brand that promises adventure and excitement, and your customers are outgoing and fun loving, the content you develop is of course different from that developed by a luxury brand that promises its affluent clientele exclusivity.

Do your homework and get your story straight. You might also want to find out what your competitors are doing to avoid replicating their strategy.

 

Step 2

Think like a content developing agency

 

In the new market with a much more demanding and powerful consumer, you have to think like a content development agency to stay competitive. No matter if your revenue comes from selling a product or offering a service.

“Compelling content is the currency that buys your customer’s attention and affection long before they reach the stage of comparing features and benefits.”

 

Step 3

Define objectives and success metrics

 

Assess your situation, define objectives and develop success metrics. You want to be able to measure the level of success for your project. At the end of the project you want to be able to evaluate how successful it was and learn from the experience to keep improving your strategy.

Keep in mind that measuring outcome parameters and success metrics involves research, which requires resources – financial, human and otherwise. The costs attached to those resources should be included in the budget to avoid surprises and enable a sound post-event evaluation process.

 

Step 4

Develop ideas, based on your vision and values.

Now that you are aware of the content matrix, ask yourself what kind of content or event will be the most interesting for your audience. What will create the most opportunity to generate event-based secondary level content (photos, videos, catalogs, interviews, etc.) and will have the biggest potential to be shared, spread, talked about.

Keep a long-term strategy in mind. You want to be able to renew the experience and update the event/content over time to remain interesting and relevant in the eyes of your audience.

 

Step 5

Execute

Be diligent

Be professional

Have fun

 

Step 6

Post event evaluation and measuring ROI

 

If you have done your homework and defined objectives and success metrics as outlined in step 3, you are now ready to reap the fruits of your labor.

A post-event evaluation tells you how good you were and will help you to do a better job next time.

 

You will know how successful the project was and if you achieved your objectives.

You might get new insights from your audience, potentially impacting other areas of your marketing and communication efforts.

You will be able improve the project to increase reach and impact for the next one.

You will have the tools to convince key stakeholders to continue and expand your cultural content developments efforts.

 

 

By: Erik Hauser

 

For more information:

sales@experientialfoodtruckrental.com

 

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