For a long time marketers all aimed at attracting WASPS: white anglo Saxon protestants. This strategy used to make sense because they made up most of the consumer market. In 2020 that approach is not only outdated but potentially harmful to your business. Perhaps it’s time to seek an online marketing agency to ensure that you are reaching a full spectrum of new business.
For starters, it ignores the changing demographics of the United States.
In 2019, millennials made up the largest generation in the United States and around the world. They are also entering their prime spending years, and this represents a golden opportunity for marketers everywhere.
Millennials today are the most diverse generation ever to exist, so narrow targeted campaigns will no longer work.
Inclusion is also a key value of this generation, and a significant 70% said that they wouldn’t consider a brand whose promotions and offerings weren’t diverse enough if there was another alternative.
What this means is that marketers today must embrace a concept now known as diversity marketing.
We’re going to give you an overview of diversity marketing from the perspective of an online marketing agency, strategies that you can utilize in your marketing efforts, and some examples from companies and that have used it correctly.
Diversity Marketing Definition
Diversity marketing refers to any marketing campaign that recognizes the differences within subgroups of people. These subgroups include age, gender identity, ethnicity, religion, sexual identity, disability, and so on.
You can go into even more segmentation through sorting them by weight, marital status, job occupation, education level, income, and you get the idea…
In short, diversity marketing means hyper-targeting your marketing campaign in order to connect with the largest variety of people within your target market.
When Should You Do Diversity Marketing?
When you’re starting out your business or brand, it’s ok to have a very focused business persona. However, as your business grows, you’ll need to reach out to a wider range of customers in a genuine manner. If your message is shallow, then you’ll experience poor results in your marketing and possibly incur other negative side effects. Here are some examples of those negative side effects:
- Offending your target customers. If you aren’t diverse enough or come across as ignorant, then you risk offending your potential customers and possibly current ones as well. For example, addressing a group of people in the wrong way is a common mistake that businesses make.
- You can lose out on potential customers. With diversity marketing, you can make your target audience feel like you know them personally, which will help you gain their trust. They can also relate to your brand better that way too.
- Change can be difficult. Going from a non-diverse approach to a diverse approach isn’t easy, but the longer you wait the harder it will be to pull off. And as time goes on it will become harder to explain when your competition is going full steam ahead into diversity marketing.
The time is now to put diversity marketing into practice in your digital marketing strategy. The question is how do you do it? With these tips of course! Here are some simple ways that you can capture company diversity with your online marketing.
Market Research is a Necessity
Market research is a key step in diversity marketing, especially with an online marketing agency. The US population is more diverse and outspoken now than it has even been before. Companies are also discovering the internal advantages that diversity brings, including increased productivity, more innovation, and a better company message.
Diversity looks at all of the following (and more): race, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, and gender identity. So to be successful, you must understand your target audience and how your brand fits into their lives. There’s just as much to learn from failed campaigns (like the ones from Pepsi and Visa) as from the successful ones.
So how can market research help you incorporate diversity into your digital marketing campaigns? In the following ways:
- Lets you know about potential problems before they infect your wider campaign. For example, are you going to use a Spanish ad translation? If so, then have a native speaker look it over and make sure that your translation isn’t offensive or inaccurate.
- Allow for a review of images. Pepsi learned this lesson the hard way with their protest ad featuring Kendall Jenner. It’s always a good idea to get an outside perspective before allowing an image or ad to go viral (in a bad way).
- Prevent disaster. Be careful not to get stuck in your company bubble. If you don’t get any outside opinions or ideas, then that will lead to stagnation and failure in the long run. Additionally, if you’re surrounded by people who already know your company, product offering, and brand, then you’ll be at greater risk of making errors in judgment.
Don’t Cut Yourself on Too Much Edginess
So you’d like to run an edgy campaign. Well, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Doing something different from your competition can certainly send you to the top. However, you should always have a voice of reason in your campaign sessions who can bring up some key questions.
So with all that in mind here’s how you can embrace edginess AND diversity in your ad campaigns
- Outside perspectives should be welcomed. Make it a point to hire outside consultants or remote workers to get some honest opinions and viewpoints.
- When trying to birth new ideas, bring as many different backgrounds, and ethnicities into the discussions as possible.
- Your ultimate goal should be empathy. Your customers should be able to relate with your ads despite (or perhaps because of) their edginess. However, you should use caution and make sure they aren’t condescending or offensive.
Some examples of good ads following these principles are the Coca-Cola “America is Beautiful” ads, and any ads by Apple, which is a company that is leading the way in utilizing diversity marketing.
Test Your Ads
The last step is to test your ads on small groups. Run A/B test ads before starting your full-blown digital marketing campaign.
Remember, the more testing you do, the more sure you’ll be that your message will align with your target audience’s values.
Contact Salt Rank today for more information on how an online marketing agency can help implement diversity marketing for your small business.