July 03, 2012

The question is not whether Ethnic Consumers that are lumped for diversity purposes into the MULTICULTURAL BUCKET offer opportunities for marketers.  We all know the answer to that question. The question is whether there is a need or a purpose for having one agency that implements all aspects of a campaign that can then be called a MULTICULTURAL approach. Does the strategy create the intended ROI? Does the strategy attract interest from advertisers? In a MULTICULTURAL approach, who buys more product or services? The Hispanic Consumer segment which many marketers embedded into the MULTICULTURAL BUCKET category is the largest and offers the most ROI for all the obvious reasons. This is the only true fact about the MULTICULTURAL BUCKET movement. So, with that said. Should we blow up the MULTICULTURAL BUCKET approach and create Hispanic focused language and media campaigns that other key elements such as African-American and maybe Asian can be incorporated? Thus, extension of the US Hispanic campaign where applicable, thus creating cross-cultural strategies based on Hispanic centric efforts. You cannot put the LGBT Consumer in the MULTICULTURAL BUCKET, but marketer do that to be politically and diversity correct.  The LGBT offers a completely different demographic profile than US Hispanics, African-Americans and Asians.  This is not to say that there are not subsets in the LGBT demographic that are of a particular ethnic background.  The numbers are exponentially smaller than the total US Hispanic population.  The MULTICULTURAL BUCKET approach is detrimental to incrementing strategies and resources towards reaching the LGBT Market effectively and efficiently. Maybe if we all sold the fact that MULTICULTURAL BUCKET approach is only ONE element of Ethnic Marketing not the THE STRATEGY, Hispanic Ad agencies might again regain their true place at the client once again. Our Industry has the remnants of failed attempts such as Media Brands' (ICG) CENTER OF EXCELLENCE, KBS&P's RAMONA and Havas' TOTALITY, just to mention a few.  Other mainstream attempts to be-all-you-can-be to advertisers and offering the MULTICULTURAL BUCKET approach continues to be just projects. Maybe it's time to challenge corporate thinking.  It is our job to sell the importance of the US Hispanic Consumer Market as a stand-alone market that has the potential of targeting smaller and quasi-similar demographic group if applicable. At the end of the day The US Hispanic Market fills approximately 75% of the MULTICULTURAL BUCKET.  So from a business standpoint, when does an attempt at total inclusion stop and maximize real opportunities begin? Our Industry pioneers did not create or defend our Industry by being QUIET. It might be time to declare our INDEPENDENCE again! Gene Bryan CEO


I think Luis Miguel Messianu had it right when he said that Alma is an agency full of Hispanics not a Hispanic agency. Personally, given the experience that most of us have in segmenting targets, developing highly-customized messaging that will appeal to groups as diverse as young Mexicans and older Cubans, Hispanic agency leaders are ripe to take leadership positions in agencies, period. Right now we have the ability to take any sub sub sub target (I don't know, a random one, say, Black Hispanic Gay men 25-35 with an interest in travel) and deliver a customized message to that mini-group. Join with the experience of having truly massive media, like broadcast television which will also include that mini-subgroup and we have the perfect marketing environment. Hispanic agency leaders have been doing that for decades. Ultimately, everyone is multicultural, be it Jewish Manhattan Men or Dominican Professional Moms. So why limit ourselves to ONLY being Hispanic shops? There's a new "general Market"

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