Multicultural marketing is aimed at different cultural audiences. It is typically built around a specific ethnic group’s cultural traits (e.g. their traditions, customs and celebrations). By doing so multicultural marketing acknowledges differences in perceptions and customs among consumers with different cultural backgrounds. Therefore, multicultural marketing strategies need to ensure that the marketing campaign resonates with customers across diverse cultural groups. If executed successfully, it shows that your brand caters for different cultures.
When marketing campaigns are designed to only appeal to a specific majority cultural group it overlooks opportunities to engage other potential customers. Multicultural diversity opens up vast opportunities for expansion and can offer major returns if each diverse group is successfully engaged. Some minority groups may feel overlooked by some brands. If your marketing campaign can successfully engage such groups, your brand will earn their loyalty, stand out amongst competitive brands and bring handsome profits to your company.
How to approach Multicultural Marketing
Different cultures have different consumer behaviours and therefore need different advertising campaigns. The brand message needs to appeal to people of different cultures and ethnicity – the campaign needs to be relevant and attractive to consumers in unique cultures. That does not mean that existing content can simply be translated into a different language. To create a new marketing message that is based on stereotypes (or based on limited understanding of the diverse culture) will not work either. Nor can one simply include a token representative of the unique cultural group in the campaign.
No, it is about customizing the message and the campaign to perfectly suit the target group. However, cultural topics have the potential to be misinterpreted and misunderstood. Multicultural marketing should definitely not offend – this will simply alienate the target group rather than engaging with it. Therefore, careful research is needed to avoid misunderstandings, to avoid stereotypes and to avoid causing offense.
It is imperative to connect with all groups in a multicultural target audience. Their needs, perceptions, and preferences are important. It is essential to converse with customers and find out what they need and desire. This will help you to get knowledge about the way in which your brand fits into the lives of different cultural groups in your target audience. Then plan a multicultural marketing strategy from there.
Also allow multicultural marketing to be delivered by people who represent all groups in the target audience. This means that your marketing team needs to be diverse and multicultural.
If members of your team can directly identify with your customers, they can truly empathise with them too. Someone on your team who represents the minority group in your target audience can bring practical knowledge and life experience to the table.
Finally, double-check accuracy and authenticity by sharing your marketing strategy with people who represent the minority groups in your target audience, to get their opinions before going ahead with the campaign.
Successful Multicultural Marketing:
● shows that the marketing team carefully studied cultural differences and adapted their campaign to
demonstrate that the brand understands multicultural consumers.
● is innovative, greatly creative and results in heartfelt campaigns that will touch those in a specific cultural
● demonstrates collaboration, as diverse groups are brought together to promote the brand.
● is inclusive and without any stereotypes that may be cause for offense.
● creates a sense of empowerment. (It does not only promote the brand, but to a certain extent “promotes
the group”. By making a minority group feel empowered a positive relationship is fostered between the
brand and the target group.
● is characterised by growth, as the marketplace and sales increase with inclusion of diverse groups.
It has only been 30 years since brands began to recognize and address the potential of a multicultural market and began to target diverse cultures. Now multicultural marketing is a necessity – if your brand does not embrace it, your competitors will.