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General Market Agencies Do Multicultural / Multicultural Agencies Do General Market

September 26, 2012

By Bill Duggan, Group EVP, ANA

ANA recently announced the finalists for the 2012 Multicultural Excellence Awards, which celebrate the year's preeminent multicultural advertising campaigns.  This year, there are some interesting observations regarding the finalist agencies.

More multicultural agencies are doing work for the general market, and more general market agencies are doing work for multicultural markets.

LatinWorks is an interesting case study.  Their website describes them initially as“a full-service advertising agency.”  They have been named Hispanic Agency of the Year by Adweek and Multicultural Agency of the Year by Advertising Age. Alejandro Ruelas, LatinWorks' managing partner and chief marketing officer, was quoted earlier in the year in Ad Age saying, "The agencies that will survive in our space are the ones that behave like general-market agencies."  LatinWorks then backed up that statement when the Texas Lottery awarded its entire account to the agency, which had previously only handed the Hispanic portion.

Meanwhile, general market agencies like mcgarrybowen, McCann, and Leo Burnett appear to be increasingly involved with communications targeted to multicultural segments.

In ANA’s soon to be released survey on multicultural marketing and newer media we asked respondents to identify the external resources used for multicultural initiatives.

These results are most interesting as there appears to be the opportunity for more marketers to engage multicultural agencies, as only half of survey respondents are currently doing so.  At the same time, general market agencies appear to be increasingly involved with communications targeted to multicultural segments, as some clients are now “marketing to a multicultural nation” rather than doing “multicultural marketing.”

Let’s see how agencies continue to evolve in this space.  And stayed tuned for the winners of the ANA Multicultural Excellence Awards, which will be announced at the ANA Multicultural Marketing & Diversity Conference  October 28-30 in Miami.




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