November 23, 2020

America is undergoing a process of social transformation. As a nation, this is impacting corporate America, the advertising and marketing industry and is encouraging dialogue of equity and inclusion regarding ethnic sectors.  A recent initiative launched last week has prompted the Culture Marketing Council (CMC), the voice of Hispanic marketing to comment.

As a leading voice in Hispanic marketing, CMC has advocated for and worked with countless clients to understand that multicultural marketing is simply smart business and a key driver for bottom-line growth. Unfortunately, the advertising community is littered with countless projects that have not driven meaningful marketing value because they have not addressed the real equity and impact issues faced by our communities.

Over the past week,  our industry witnessed a well-intentioned announcement, this time by dentsu for the creation of Project Booker, an effort that promises to steer media buys to minority-owned media, responding to the current political and social climate and do the right thing. Unfortunately, this project is only considering Black-owned media and not Hispanic-owned (or other minority) media.

Like so many others before them, dentsu has fallen into the same trap by developing a short-term, partial fix rather than creating a cohesive plan that is inclusive of key segments, such as Hispanic, to yield results for clients, while properly supporting communities.

The U.S. is rapidly becoming a multicultural majority, which is already a reality in Gen Z, and in just 8 years will be the reality for people under 35. This growth is fueled primarily by Hispanics. Shifting dollars to minority and independently owned media, while an important effort in these times, from a marketing standpoint, it doesn’t begin to capture the full power and extent of the multicultural market. Excluding other culture segments, like the Hispanic market, that slice is even tinier with minimal impact to the very communities that companies like dentsu are trying to impact.  

We encourage our colleagues across the multicultural sector to join us in calling on brands and agencies to stop committing the same old errors of allocating small percentages of their budgets to multicultural marketing afterthoughts and mono-cultural one-offs. Instead, they need to invest in culture marketing specialists that can advise them how to properly support minority-owned media and all other targeted media, and our communities with long-lasting impact and positive business results for their clients. CMC stands ready to assist and advise dentsu or any other marketing organization striving to navigate America’s social transition.

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