Stake Your Claim in the Multicultural Market (978 words)
Every marketer's ultimate goal is to dominate its market. Those marketers who establish this dominance in ethnic markets early on will be the winners. Brand recognition and loyalty score very high in these markets. Ethnic consumers appreciate being marketed to in their language of choice, or with culturally relevant offers in a meaningful way. Response rates are much higher than what companies typically receive in the overall marketplace. Many savvy direct marketers, such as Rodale Inc., Columbia House, BMG, The Readers Digest Association, Covenant House, Salesian Missions and other Catholic fundraisers have known this for quite some time.
Direct Mail is Welcome
One of the best ways to reach multicultural markets is through direct mail. These ethnic groups love to receive direct mail, especially Hispanic and Asian-American immigrants, because they receive so little marketing in their native language. And they will continue to prefer their native language long after they've learned English and assimilated in other ways. To these two groups, direct mail is typically new and exciting … something they didn't receive in their countries of origin to the same degree most Americans do in the United States.
Another reason direct mail is so successful with ethnic markets is because shopping at home is less intimidating than dealing with pushy sales people; or not receiving respect because of nationality, race or color; or not being able to communicate effectively because of a language barrier.
Maybe the best reason direct mail works with first-generation ethnic markets is because the buying process is usually a family decision, and it's easiest to make such decisions when the prospect's family is all around the dining room table reading a mail piece.
The Ethnic List Market is Growing
Contrary to some popular beliefs, there are many multicultural lists available, both postal and e-mail, and their number is growing. While the count is considerably less than that of the general market (more than 25,000 general lists compared to fewer than 1,000 ethnic lists), some of the biggest and well-known companies rent their ethnic names. Some of these lists on the market now (in addition to lists offered by the savvy direct marketers mentioned earlier) are from Editorial Televisa magazines, Family Digest magazine, Univision, Terra.com, Conde Nast/IPG magazines, Radio Unica, Bookspan's Mosaico, Midnight Velvet catalog and Essence magazine.