2020 Multicultural & Diversity Calendar

The 2020 multicultural and diversity calendar highlights the importance of diversity in the United States.

While there are an incredible number of relevant days celebrating individuals, religion and more, we have compiled a list of those of major importance to U.S. Multicultural communities. From month long celebrations such as Black History Month (February), Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 -October 15), National American Indian Heritage Month (November) and Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (May) to more specific observances such as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birthday (January 21) or the Lunar New Year (February 5), the U.S. calendar of observances is incredibly diverse.

Whether planning your multicultural marketing campaigns or looking for ways to celebrate your cultural heritage, here are some key dates for 2020 with a particular focus on multicultural / diversity segments in the United States.  

  • January 20:  DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.’S BIRTHDAY The birthday of civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is celebrated on the third Monday in January.
  • January 25:  LUNAR NEW YEAR,  Also known as the Spring Festival  or Chinese New Year.   *5 Things to know about Chinese New Year
  • February(month):  BLACK HISTORY MONTH Celebrates Black History and African American culture
  • March 31:  CESAR CHAVEZ DAY honors the Mexican American farm worker and celebrates the contributions of labor leader and activist Cesar Chavez.
  • April: (month): ARAB AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH celebrating Arab American heritage, culture and contributions.
  • April 23: Native American GATHERING OF NATIONS where over 500 tribes gather for three days to honor their culture
  • April 24: First Friday of RAMADAN which is the holiest month of the Muslim year
  • May: (month):   ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH recognizes the contributions and culture of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States.
  • May: (month): JEWISH AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH honors the contributions of American Jews
  • May: (month): HAITIAN HERITAGE MONTH is observed in May 2019. Haitian Heritage Month is a celebration in the United States of Haitian heritage and culture. It was first celebrated in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1998.
  • May 21:  WORLD DAY FOR CULTURAL DIVERSITY is a day that recognizes cultural diversity as a source of innovation, exchange and creativity.
  • June 20:  WORLD REFUGEE DAY raises awareness about the plight of refugees .
  • August 9:  INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE WORLD’S INDIGENOUS PEOPLES celebrating the richness of indigenous cultures as well as recognizing the challenges indigenous peoples face today.
  • September 15– October 15 (month):   NATIONAL HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH celebrates the contributions, heritage and culture of Hispanic and Latino Americans.
  • September 17:  CONSTITUTION DAY AND CITIZENSHIP DAY commemorating the ratification of the United States Constitution in 1787 and also honors all who have become U.S. citizens.
  • October (Month): GLOBAL DIVERSITY AWARENESS MONTH increasing awareness and acceptance of diverse cultures
  • October 12: INDIGENOUS PEOPLE’S DAY (Native American Day) Celebrates and honors Native American history and culture.
  • October 12: DIA DE LA RAZA, “Day of the Race”, in Spanish-speaking countries and communities.
  • October 31:  DIA DE LOS MUERTOS three day celebration to remember dead relatives and friends.
  • November (month):    NATIONAL AMERICAN INDIAN and ALASKA NATIVE HERITAGE MONTH honoring the history and culture of Native Americans and indigenous people in the United States.
  • December 25: CHRISTMAS
  • December 26– January 1, 2020:  KWANZAA  is a celebration honoring African American heritage

While these excerpts relate specifically to ethnicity / cultural background, there is an extremely comprehensive list that includes religious observances as well as public holidays put together by the Anti-Defamation League.  For brands & agencies looking to connect with multicultural audiences, Alcance Media Group can assist.

Multicultural Healthcare

Multicultural Healthcare Initiatives - Making a difference

Healthcare has been a major issue for governments, politicians, voters, and the population overall. A difficult issue in general, yet further complicated by challenges related to the healthcare needs of very diverse multicultural communities.

Avoiding issues of the government’s role in healthcare and the always challenging healthcare debate, we’ll just have a glimpse into healthcare marketing for diverse communities in key states and the relation to diverse segments that are prevalent in their communities.

Michigan – Arab American

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has outreach programs for numerous multicultural communities throughout the state.  As the state with the largest Arab American populations (….) they are one of the more educated organizations  and have even published studies like this one: Health Status of Arab Adults in Michigan

Here is a great example of MDHSS and an initiative for the Arab American community in relation to Diabetes.
MDHHS – Arab American Diabetes Outreach (English & Arabic)


California – Asian | Asian American:

California is extremely diverse and while is at the top in terms of population for most multicultural segments, it is the highest population and percentage for the Asian segment.  This group in itself is diverse in culture, language, and many other areas so presents numerous challenges.

The California Department of Health created Health Equity programs. The Asian American initiative  for example works with community organizations and adapts information for the Hmong, Vietnamese, and Chines communities.   Throughout California there are also community organizations such as the San Francisco based Chinese Community Health Plan (CCHP)  which offers health plans throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

Texas – U.S. Hispanic | Latino: Texas

By percentage, Texas is second in terms of population numbers (behind California) and in percentage of the population (trailing New Mexico) and has been at the forefront of outreach to this community.

Among the challenges for the Texas Department of State Health Services are a high rate of uninsured (31% of Texas Latinos are uninsured according to Pew Hispanic LINK . With a high percentage of Hispanics speaking Spanish in the home, one key consideration is to have a complete set of Spanish resources such as the Texas Department of State Health Services website  which can also support community efforts.

Arizona – Native American | Navajo:

Outreach to Native American communities is often overlooked in many states, but in Arizona this is a key segment for a variety of issues. In population size Arizona has the largest Native American population (by percentage Alaska is top) so it is a population with a significant impact on the state.

Arizona has a specific health insurance outreach for Native American communities called the American Indian Health Program (AIHP) health insurance plan options for this community.  In fact, the Arizona health services even offers information in Navajo.

Georgia – African American | Black:

As one of the states with the highest concentration as well as population for African Americans Georgia has put together numerous outreach programs to the community. Yet despite Atlanta being one of the cities with major government health organizations (ex. Center for Disease Control CDC, American Cancer Society, and more) there continue to be major issues with mortality and insurance coverage among the African American Community.  A recent NPR article looks into some of the challenges in Atlanta.

Whether on a national, state, or community level, many public as well as private organizations understand the need to reach out to diverse multicultural communities, yet resources always present a challenge. For states where a segment represents a large percentage, the needs for specific marketing / outreach efforts for communities are clear, but for others deciding on which segment to focus efforts on will be much more challenging.

On the positive side, there are now more resources available that can be adapted or offer insight as to how to communicate with these communities.

For additional information for advertisers looking to reach multicultural communities, Alcance Media Group’s multicultural health advertising team can assist.

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group – Multicultural Marketing

The challenges of health providers to reach U.S. Hispanic

Health Status of Arab Adults in Michigan

Chinese Community Health Plan (CCHP)

The Asian American initiative

Texas Department of State Health Services website

American Indian Health Program (AIHP)

Arab American Media - Opportunity & Challenge

In today’s world there seem to be media options for almost every interest.  In multicultural media, while there are numerous publications catering to the Hispanic segment, for advertisers interested in reaching other segments such as that of the Arab American community, there is a definitive lack of options.
As we look for options to reach the Arab American community, there are relatively few options that relate to the community in the U.S.  While few, these local publications have the ability to make an impact.
Here is a brief list of some Arab American media resources that offer digital advertising options to reach the Arab American community.
MDHHS – Arab American Diabetes Outreach (English & Arabic)

Here is a brief video highlighting diversity : We are Arab America

In an article from Pew Research Center for Journalism & Media, there is a discussion about Arab-American Media (LINK) https://www.journalism.org/2012/11/28/arabamerican-media/
Of the reasons cited in the article, many apply today.
  • The Arab-American population across the U.S. is ethnically diverse
  • Technology advancements have brought new competition for advertising dollars from Arab outlets located in the Middle East and North Africa
  • Social Media ability to expand news outside the region.

What about Advertisers?  While this community represents a smaller segment and may be difficult to justify breaking out specific resources, there are areas where this is a must.

  • Census Bureau – needs to reach out to all multicultural segments
  • Auto dealers in communities with a strong Arab American presence:  Multicultural Auto Marketing
  • Health Organizations – government and private in areas with a large Arab American community.
While the challenges to media as well as advertising budgets are relevant, for brands and agencies that are serious about reaching the Arab American community, utilizing local and regional media outlets will relate to the daily lives of Arab Americans and can make an outsized impact.
For additional information for advertisers looking to reach the Arab American community, Alcance Media Group’s Arab American advertising team can assist.  LINK: https://www.alcancemg.com/en/home/

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group

Arab American Institute

Pew Research Arab American Media

Spanish OTT Connected TV

Reaching Multicultural Audiences through Connected Devices OTT & Connected TV

Multicultural Audiences have been among the strongest audiences for entertainment as well as utilization of digital devices for those entertainment needs.

But is the transition to connected devices and over the top devices (OTT) for multicultural audiences happening as fast, and how will that impact multicultural marketing?

According to a recent Streaming Media: Reaching Multicultural Audiences in a Fragmented Ecosystem there are some interesting insights regarding multicultural audiences and the penetration of connected devices.

  • While average TV viewers spend 43 percent of time with live TV and 35 percent with steaming services with Hispanics, Blacks and Asians splitting 40% on live TV, 40% on streaming, and the remainder on other devices.
  • The article contends that Latinos and Asians show fewer signs of cord cutting than Non-Hispanic and Black audiences due to the importance of in-language and cultural specific packages.

Content in-language and culturally relevant is an opportunity for content providers and advertisers alike.

Of course there are increasing data/targeting options for advertisers to reach these multicultural segments, however by creating culturally relevant advertising and combining it with culturally relevant content in any language will make an impact.  Of course sporting events such as soccer and basketball will have a major streaming viewership, there are more entertainment options being creative for everyone. While Hispanic and Asian audiences especially in younger audiences are English proficient, an interesting mention in the article was that almost 9 in 10 bilingual Hispanics watch some Spanish language television.  And,

About half of Latinos and Asians, and two in three Black viewers, say it’s important to have access to content created for them.

Following are a few examples for African American and Hispanic options

Example of African American focused channel: Kweli TV

Example of how to ad Sling TV Spanish language options  (in Spanish)

While the cord cutting numbers increase across the TV ecosystem, and there continue to be more providers of content, targeting and advertising services, there is a major opportunity for marketers to make an impact with multicultural audiences through streaming devices (OTT) and connected TV.  For reaching Hispanics, Asians and African American audiences, there may be challenges to working with one provider (ex. Roku) as reach may still pose challenges while more content becomes available.  Working with digital, multicultural specific networks or platforms such as Alcance Media Group will facilitate reaching these multicultural audiences across multiple platforms instead of reaching out individually to each and is a solution to dealing with scale, minimums, and the challenges of getting in touch with the individual providers.

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group: Multicultural OTT

Streaming Media: Reaching Multicultural Audiences in a Fragmented Media Ecosystem:

Multicultural Sports Fans

Womens World Cup France 2019

Women's World Cup - Not Only for Women

The Women’s World Cup 2019 in France, while played by women, is watched by a diverse audience.

Soccer is a global game and has a broad appeal across gender, ethnicity, income, education and beyond.  While nothing will trump the appeal of the World Cup, the Women’s World Cup continues to increase in popularity and drives opportunities for viewers, marketers as well as expanded access to sporting opportunities for women.

One of the best sources to evaluate interest in the game comes from marketing studies as sponsorship and advertising are also a key part of the game.  According to a recent MediaPost article there are some key findings that demonstrate the level of interest and viewership among groups.

FIFA’s viewership goal:  Exceed 1 billion viewers

U.S. Interest:

  • 3 of 10 U.S. adults have some interest in watching, and men are significantly more likely than women to watch.
  • Millenials (36%) and Hispanics (41%) are somwhat or very interested in watching.
  • Asians (33%), African Americans (22%) and non-Hispanic Whites (25%) were also mentioned.

Whether watching on TV (majority) or streaming online through connected devices (OTT/CTV) the tournament is already drawing the attention of viewers in the U.S.  Of course with all sports, popularity of the tournament will also follow the results that come.  If the U.S. and France are in the Final, then of course media attention and viewership in those countries will be high.  However should they falter, you can bet that interest will decline.  The same goes for any team, especially the favorites.

Odds to Win the 2019 Women’s World Cup

Women’s World Cup 2019 plus betting odds to win


As for the chances of each team winning the World Cup, look no further than Las Vegas for the real experts (Sports Gambling) to see your team’s potential.

Women’s Opportunities and Challenges in Sports.

Regardless of the outcome, one key benefit to the increasing interest in the Women’s World Cup are the benefits in offering opportunities for women on a global level.  Adding to media attention in the run up to the tournament have been increased discussions on pay, access, and harassment.   While the battles of the U.S. team have been well documented, in other countries there are changes on the way.  For example in Colombia, Argentina and other parts of Latin America there is an increased focus on the opportunities and challenges for women and progress is being made.

The ski industry faces numerous challenges,  however there is a clear replacement to participation numbers in U.S. Hispanic, African American, and Asian American populations.  Does the industry recognize this?  While it does seem that there is an overall understanding among industry executives, actions are far less evident and that is what will need to change.

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group: Multicultural Marketing

Media Post 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup: How Marketers Can Get In the Game:

As Women’s World Cup approaches, Latin American women soccer players seek change

Copa America: When Where and How

Expatriate votes count

Foreign citizens (expatriates) living in the U.S. in many cases have a vote that can impact their countries of origin.

As a U.S. Citizen we have the ability to vote in U.S. elections while traveling and/or living abroad.

Absentee Voting Information for U.S. Citizens Abroad

While these votes are important, in many cases their impact is minimal due to the percentage relative to the number of those living and voting in the U.S.   However, for expatriates of countries with large populations living abroad (U.S. and Europe) their expatriate votes may have a major impact.   Many may not know if they are even eligible to vote in their country of origin elections nor how to do it.  An example of how to vote in the Philippines Elections below:

Which countries allow overseas voting?

The eligibility as well as the process varies by country so in most cases the best resource is your country’s government voting information sites.  Here are a few example countries and listed in additional resources will be a more comprehensive list.

Example 1: Phillipines – Filipinos living abroad.

With over 1.8 million Filipinos living outside of the Phillipines and 250,000 in the U.S. registered to vote in the Pillipines midterm elections there is the potential to impact the elections.  If not registered, while they cannot vote in the 2019 midterm elections, there will be a registration period later in 2019 to be eligible for the 2020 elections.

Example: Guatemalan Elections

The importance of Guatemala’s elections and how it relates to immigration, corruption, and standing in the international community is highlighted this 2019 Latin American elections article, however Guatemalans living outside of the country are NOT eligible to vote remotely according to Georgetown University’s Political Database of the Americas.   Imagine if even 2013’s Pew Research estimate of 1.3 million Guatemalan country of origin population in the U.S. was eligible to vote in the election of a country with only 17 million in population.  There would be a definitive impact.

Example: India

Expatriate Indian citizens have been allowed to vote in Indian elections since 2010 as long as they are physically present in the country and have not acquired citizenship in another country.  So in other words, remote voting is not an option and for most even if they haven’t acquired citizenship in another country, traveling just to vote would be unlikely.

Expatriate Voting has the potential to have an impact….when permitted.

Many who have roots in another country, yet live in the U.S. understand the challenges of their country of origin and in many cases potentially have a vote that could matter to their relatives and the country as a whole.  For those with ties to another country, check with your government voting sites to find out more information on how you can make an impact. VOTING MATTERS!

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group: Political

Latin America Elections 2019:

Political Database of the Americas

Wikipedia: List of Countries that Allow Expatriate Voting

Marketing to Filipinos

Outpacing Hispanics, the Filipino market is one of the fastest growing ethnic populations in the U.S.

In the world of multicultural marketing, agencies focus extensively on the Hispanic market.  Whether in English or Spanish, this audience segment has made its presence known.  However, for savvy multicultural marketers, the rise of Asian populations and within the broader Asian segment that of the Filipino market.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau and recent American Community Survey (ACS), there are over 4 million Filipinos in the United States with 1.6 million living in California alone.  This population constitutes the second largest population of Asian Americans in the U.S.  and Tagalog is next only to Chinese as the most common language spoken at home besides English.

Most common languages spoken at home in the U.S. (According to the 2016 American Community Survey)

  1. English
  2. Spanish
  3. French & Creole
  4. Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese)
  5. Tagalog
  6. Vietnamese
  7. Korean
  8. Arabic

Where are they and does this segment matter?

In the warped reality that is represented by marketing budgets, the focus of most marketing efforts will be largely beneficial for initiatives that are concerned with California.  Overall the Filipino population has a high English proficiency and is less likely to live in poverty than other foreign born immigrants in the U.S.  Additionally, the vast majority of immigrants from the Philippines are here legally, although there is a large number that currently fall under the DACA programs so are in a less permanent situation.

While reaching out in language (Tagalog) will make an impact when available, the population overall is highly proficient in English so there are numerous options for marketers.  From publications with content specifically related to the interests of the population in the U.S. as well as abroad to understanding key pockets of this population, to utilizing key data points, this population represents a significant multicultural audience, especially in California.

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group: Multicultural Marketing

U.S. Census Bureau:

PBS Video: Filipinos in California’s Heartland

African American Skiers - National Brotherhood of Skiers

As we look at multicultural participation in winter sports and how the ski industry can benefit from increased participation from multicultural skiers, for this article we focus on African American / Black Skiers.  This audience represents 14.5% of the U.S. population, yet do not come close to representing that percentage on the ski slopes.

The ski industry needs multicultural segment participation: Specifically three key audiences: U.S. Hispanics, African Americans and Asian Americans.

With the first gathering in 1973 bringing together over 350 African American skiers in Aspen Colorado the National Brotherhood of Skiers has helped bring the African American community to the slopes.  With the mission to “identify, develop and support athletes of color who will WIN international and Olympic winter sports competition representing the Unites States and to increase participation in winter sports.” the organization now connects over 60 ski clubs, from Florida to California.  If you want to see the impact in action, then visit Steamboat between March 2-9 , 2019 during the Black Ski Summit.

From the Winter Olympics (traditionally dominated by wealthy nordic nations) to the U.S. Ski industry which has traditionally been a sport dominated by wealthy boomers, the faces of Winter Sports are changing.  From Kenya’s first ever Winter Olympian, to a much more diverse Team USA (Erin Jackson/African American speed skater & Chloe Kim/Asian American)  winter sports are slowly adjusting to the changing demographics of the country.

For a little history check out the article: 11 Black Olympians who have made history

Groups such as National Brotherhood of Skiers, Gateway Mountain Center and others make a major impact and should be supported by the industry.  A great example of the impact of these organizations is the story of a Tahoe Guide and Squaw Valley Ski Patroller John Littleton.

John Littleton – Tahoe Guide and Squaw Valley Ski Patrol

Multicultural participation is key to the success of the ski industry.

Organizations such as NBS and their National Youth Program open doors to this fantastic sport.  There are many groups throughout the country that do great work to encourage participation and offer opportunities for more diversity.  Not only ethnicity, but also offering opportunities for younger generations that did not grow up with the sports and that may not have the same affluent financial background of many ski families.

From a 2017 Powder magazine article here is a snapshot of the situation:  For 40 years, skiing has failed to market itself beyond a single narrow (and diminishing) demographic. In 1974, resorts had 53 million skier visits; 2016 had 53.9 million. (In the same period, the total U.S. population swelled by another 100 million people. The percentage of Americans skiing has decreased from 25 to 17.) Similarly, the socioeconomic and racial makeup of the sport remains steady. In 1976, 70 percent of skiers made more money than the average American; today’s figure is 72 percent. And the snow sports world has always skewed whiter than the greater U.S. In 2014, seven percent of skiers were African-American and 13 percent were Hispanic, compared to 12 and 17 percent nationwide.

Now to hear from the National Brotherhood National Youth program with a good message: Let’s face it – this sport is hard to get in to, and far too easy to let go… It takes a village. We all play a part.  While financial support is critical, sometimes a friendly, familiar face, kind words of encouragement, a network of support for families traveling to an unfamiliar place is enough to keep the dream alive – to make the load more bearable in that moment.  We can ALL lend something to that experience, to enrich the life of a young person.

The ski industry faces numerous challenges,  however there is a clear replacement to participation numbers by expanding diversity and of course increasing youth participation.  The challenge of course is that it is rarely as simple as setting up a marketing campaign towards a particular group, however working with advocacy groups and working to increase inclusion will bring benefits.

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group: Multicultural Marketing

National Brotherhood of Skiers

Gateway Mountain Center

Will multicultural skiers save the ski industry?

The ski industry needs multicultural segment participation: Specifically three key audiences: U.S. Hispanics, African Americans and Asian Americans.

U.S. Demographics are rapidly changing and this has a major effect in many areas.  The ski industry is one of those industries that faces challenges on many fronts.  From an aging boomer generation which has been a core participant, to climate change which requires resorts to adapt.

Since the late 1970’s through today, skier numbers in the U.S. has remained relatively flat.  With the aging baby boomer population which is a key part of that number, the challenge of how to replace those skiers is at the forefront.  As populations change, especially in California and Colorado cities that feed many winter destinations, there are some efforts to reach out to different segments of the population.  But is it enough?  and will these populations be receptive?

Ethnic markets near ski areas
Diverse audiences in San Francisco, Denver, Los Angeles, New York, and others are key to the success for winter destinations.

Does the Ski Industry need multicultural skiers?  And more importantly, do they realize it?

From an article in Aspen Sojourner. https://www.aspensojo.com/articles/2018/2/15/let-the-winter-games-begin related to the ski industry: Karl Kapuscinski, owner of Mountain High ski area, within a three-hour drive of Los Angeles, concurs. The Southern California demographic he sees now can deliver growth for destination ski resorts for years to come. He describes a new ethnic mix at Mountain High: about 60 percent from minority groups, especially Latino and Asian. These customers further reflect Southern California’s population in that they’re educated, have disposable income, and favor active, outdoor lifestyles. Kapuscinski also oversees Stevens Pass near Seattle, where he sees similar demographics.


While from experience, in the Tahoe area the importance of Hispanic / Asian populations is evident.  From the supermarket to the ski slopes, the influence of nearby multicultural audiences cannot be understated. Yet, what is way less evident is a consistent marketing effort to embrace the changing demographic.

Visit Denver offers multilingual options for multicultural audiences.

While Visit Denver has multiple language options as well as efforts to reach out to the Hispanic community, the ski industry seems to be well behind. A quick look at the two major ski companies offering the two largest season pass groupings of ski resorts.  The Epic pass page is only in English and the IKON pass is in English & French.  Even with resorts in Latin America, Japan and other countries having only French as the other language is just confusing.

French, really? Great language, but not sure the French population growth is at the same level as Hispanic and Asian Americans.

The ski industry faces numerous challenges,  however there is a clear replacement to participation numbers in U.S. Hispanic, African American, and Asian American populations.  Does the industry recognize this?  While it does seem that there is an overall understanding among industry executives, actions are far less evident and that is what will need to change.

Additional Resources:

Alcance Media Group: Multicultural Marketing

U.S. Census Bureau:

Aspen Sojourner Article:

Top Travel Destinations for Latin Americans in the U.S. 

Multicultural Auto Marketing - Missed Opportunity?

Automotive Industry Multicultural Marketing is key.

After numerous years of continued strong automotive sales in the U.S., there are questions as to whether the trend can be sustained.  While there may be challenges ahead, there is an opportunity for alert auto related companies to maintain and improve their position in the market.  For automotive brands, auto parts and service centers and especially the dealer associations, multicultural markets will be increasingly important to their success.  Those of pay lip service or feel that their “general market” campaigns are doing enough, are doing their companies a great disservice.

multicultural auto marketing crossed banners

For automakers, there are some clear winners.  Working with multicultural markets and seeing what the automakers are doing to connect with multicultural segments, it is no surprise that Toyota and Honda’s investments have paid dividends as they are at the top among Hispanic, African-American, and Asian American car buyers for new cars.

Multicultural new car registrations 2017
From : Automotive News – Auto brands overlook niches in ethnic marketing

Working with multicultural brands and agencies, it has been clear for many years that certain brands have followed the research and understand that multicultural marketing is key to reaching these  key consumer segments.  While $$$ invested isn’t the only factor, investment is required.  Toyota which is present atop all of the new car registrations lists, consistently invests in multicultural marketing and media across all platforms and has done so for many years.   Most major brands make significant investments towards African American, Hispanic and Asian American car buyers, however they do it to varying degrees.

Outside of the major brands however, there are key opportunities that are being missed by other automotive related enterprises.

  • Auto Dealers: One of the groups that needs to be the most in tune with their community.  Many dealership groups, especially those located within strong multicultural communities invest and have seen the benefits.  If your dealership is in California, Texas, Florida, it is obvious, however many times for areas that have been changing, some dealership groups are still adjusting their tactics to meet the community.
  • Auto Parts / Auto Repair / Tires etc.: Beyond traditional advertising (billboards, radio, TV) many of these show significantly less initiative in their multicultural marketing efforts.  Whether due to smaller budgets, less information, or less interest, these regional players may have the most to gain by reaching out to their communities.  While local store owners likely see the changing communities, are they getting the support from the brands marketing departments. Major parts stores (Autozone etc.) as well as major tire brands (Bridgestone etc.) have shown some limited interest in multicultural advertising, but this does not seem to be at levels that match the changes in the community.
  • Finance / Insurance: Banks, financial institutions, as well as insurance companies are also present in varying degrees.  Whether the automotive brand financing or working with community or national banks, financing and insurance are going to be key beneficiaries, IF they actively market to these communities and many are not.

Even in California, while most auto dealership groups truly reach out to their diverse communities, for many auto related retailers, the outreach to the Hispanic community for example seems limited to the same general market campaign but maybe buying some local media.  In some communities, if they are the only player, it may not matter but if you own an AutoZone store and O’Reilly AutoParts moves in next door, then suddenly the importance of connecting with the community will become apparent.

In a state like Michigan, not traditionally known as the most diverse state, there is a developing multicultural consumer. The African American community is well known in the states urban areas,  and the Arab American community is significant in the Dearborn area for example.  Yet while Hispanics are a small percentage of the state population, they represent 15% of the population in Grand Rapids.  And overall much of the state’s growth is due to an increase in the Asian and Hispanic communities.   The question is, how long will it take for the brand marketing department to realize its importance.   Most likely, the local owners will see these changes first, and a big questions will be if they can get the support that they need to create strong multicultural marketing programs.

Each area will have its own story and those businesses and owners who pay attention and invest in multicultural marketing, will see the benefits.  Those who continue with the same strategies will not.   When the economy is strong it seems that everyone wins, however when there are hiccups, these relationships take on even more importance over the longer term and should not be ignored.

Continued reading:  Learn how Dealerships are Reaching Hispanic Car Buyers