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Insights from the Multicultural Excellence Awards Judges

September 30, 2013

By Yasmin Melendez, director of committees and conferences, ANA

During the Multicultural Excellence Awards judging, I had the privilege of spending two days with some of the brightest marketers spearheading multicultural initiatives for their companies. I want to express a huge thank you to this year’s judges, who dedicated their time to review 375 pieces of creative:

  • Sharonda Britton, Walmart Stores, Inc.
  • Mike Foley, Post Holdings, Inc.
  • Liz Ho, Healthfirst
  • Ellen Johnson, EmblemHealth
  • Dante Mastri, American Express
  • Melissa Miranda, PepsiCo Beverages America
  • Irene Palen, Verizon Communications
  • Patricia Popowich, Diageo North America, Inc.

  • Widaliz  Quiñones, HEINEKEN USA
  • Matthew Rodano, The LanguageWorks, Inc.
  • Chris Starkey, Edward Jones
  • Xavier Turpin, Dunkin' Brands
  • Lisa Valtierra, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
  • Lizette Williams, Kimberly-Clark Corporation
  • Maurice Wilson, American Family Insurance
In a previous post, I shared my takeaways about this year’s entries; now the judges share their perspective:

"As a judge, I was inspired by both the excellent creative and the deep insights that were used to reach multicultural consumers and the total market.  While our industry is challenged to effectively reach multicultural audiences, it's my hope that with wonderful organizations, like the ANA, we'll continue to learn and share from each other."
Chris Starkey
, Senior Marketing Strategist and Team Leader for Consumer Needs, Edward D. Jones & Co

“As multicultural consumers slowly creep into being the majority (this year multicultural births represented 51% of all babies being born!), we need to begin to rethink our approach.  We have moved beyond the days of siloed marketing; the very notion of “multicultural marketing” is essentially dead.  Today we are marketing in a multicultural world.  Every marketer will need to be equipped with the tools to appropriately address this consumer, not just those with “multicultural” in their title.  This is the new general market.”
Lizette Williams, Senior Brand Manager, Kimberly-Clark Corporation

“Now more than ever it is an exciting time to be a marketer, to push boundaries and to build powerful brands within the multicultural community. The majority of the work submitted for judging was rooted in similar multicultural insights translated into very-traditional, expected executions. However, the ones that rose to the top took those same insights and demonstrated a deep, nuanced understating of the consumer that was cleverly translated to engaging and emotionally powerful executions- the  winners evolved traditional multicultural stats to ‘making heart beats.’”
Melissa Miranda
, Senior Manager, Culture Marketing, PepsiCo Beverages America

“Seeing several multicultural entries in succession, I started to notice some commonalties in entries that generated positive reactions.  The most successful entries were rooted in clear insights about a particular segment, but also managed to tap into a more universal feelings or emotions.  And the cultural cues reflected didn’t necessarily have to hit the viewer over the head – but they needed to be clearly articulated and executed in the creative.”  
Dante Mastri
, Global Strategy & Capabilities, Global Merchant Services, American Express

“The future of multicultural marketing is bright.  Clearly, the consumer base is dramatically changing.  A third of the nation is non-white and at current growth rates will surpass the Caucasian population around 2043. Baby boomers are retiring, ethnic groups’ purchasing power is growing and Millennials have shifted to an acquisition age.  As such, we should now practice Marketing in a Multicultural Nation and evolve from an initiative to a business imperative that translates to the bottom line."
Xavier Turpin, Director of Multicultural Marketing, Dunkin' Brands Inc.

The 2013 ANA Multicultural Marketing & Diversity Conference is November 3-5 in Los Angeles, CA. Hear from McDonald’s, IMAN Cosmetics, Diageo, Pepsico, Amway, Walmart, Paramount Pictures and many more who will provide multicultural marketers with ideas on driving business growth. 

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