Collage Group Raises $25 Million in Growth Capital to Continue to Fuel Member Engagement with Diverse Consumers

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Collage Group Raises $25 Million in Growth Capital to Continue to Fuel Member Engagement with Diverse Consumers

June 29, 2022
David Wellisch – CEO and Co-Founder

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With deep humility, pride, and excitement, I would like to take this opportunity to announce that Collage Group has raised $25 million in growth capital led by Boston-based growth equity firm Wavecrest Growth Partners, with participation from Dennis Ainge, an industry veteran and investor.  This new funding will be used to continue to accelerate our robust growth and further invest in our technology infrastructure and product innovation, thus continuing to support America’s iconic consumer brands in their journey toward Cultural Fluency.

I could not be more grateful for the honor and opportunity that our brand partners have provided our team, allowing us to serve as their cultural partner. I am truly inspired by the current moment and feel responsible to continue to innovate given today’s complex climate in America. Such forward-looking development will help brands to continue to super serve Diverse America, and, in doing so, amplify the voices of under-represented consumers. I would also like to take this occasion to thank our talented team at Collage Group, who are mission driven, committed to the cause, and at the ready to do what it takes to serve our member brands.

As America’s demographic landscape continues to shift through the accelerated growth of diverse consumers, it is imperative for brands to deeply understand this cultural transformation across race, ethnicity, generation, sexuality, and family relationships. Collage Group was founded on this mission­–to help corporations unleash the power of culture to drive brand growth.

Since 2009, we’ve grown our first mover Cultural Intelligence Platform to be the leading SaaS platform in the space, which now includes four unique data and insights offerings–Multicultural, Generations, LGBTQ+ & Gender and Parents & Kids. The insights and best practices available in the Platform, as well as our custom research and advisory solutions, offer more than 250 of America’s iconic brands continued support. Effectively engaging and resonating with today’s American consumer is a challenging mandate. Our insights, data, and tools have become an important enabler to effectively engage and connect with diverse America, while at the same time generate incremental ROI.

Our investors echo our excitement:

“The spending power of diverse consumers represents most of the potential growth opportunity for America’s leading B2C brands. Furthermore, the current U.S. social environment necessitates a greater understanding of the wants and needs of these consumers. We believe Collage Group provides an essential data and service offering to empower and enable revenue growth, and its traction with over 250 top brands speaks for itself. We’re very excited to be partnering with David and his team to help them capitalize on the market opportunity. Our investment will continue to fuel the company’s growth by expanding the depth of their team, their technological infrastructure and product innovation, and their sales and marketing efforts.”

- Deepak Sindwani, Managing Partner at Wavecrest

“During the past seven years, I’ve watched David assemble an incredible team of professionals who have a passion for evangelizing the benefits of Collage Group’s unique solutions for America’s top brands. The strength of this team, Collage Group’s existing and planned solutions, and the combined value-add of the Wavecrest team guarantees a very bright future for Collage Group and the more than 250 brands they support.”

- Dennis Ainge, founding executive of TARGUSinfo and former Neustar executive

Contact us at the form below if you would like to learn more about our offerings and the many ways that we can help you and/or other teams at your company in your journey to Cultural Fluency.

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David Wellisch

David Wellisch
CEO and Co-Founder

David Wellisch is CEO & Co-Founder of Collage Group, a consumer insights and intelligence company with a focus on research exploring race/ethnicity, generation, sexuality and gender. Since the inception of Collage Group in 2009, David has led the company through growth, now serving more than 200 brands in across 15 industries. David is passionate about entrepreneurship and company building, and often works directly with members to help guide the integration of multicultural consumer insights and marketing strategies.

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New Diverse Consumer Insights for Q3 2022

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New Diverse Consumer Insights for Q3 2022

More than 250 of America’s top brands have access to the deep cultural insights needed to engage America’s diverse consumers. Do you? 

June 27, 2022
David Evans – Chief Product Officer

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Here’s an overview of the new reports we’re releasing in Q3 2022 and beyond that you’re missing out on. 

Read on and fill out the form to contact us today to learn how you can gain access:

Passion Points

Discover each segment’s core passion points: the activities and areas of life of deep interest to consumers. These are the “things” that consumers prioritize when spending their time, money, and attention. Our research helps you engage diverse consumer groups based on their interests in food, fashion, sports, fitness, music, movies, TV shows, games, home improvement, and travel.

Understand & Embrace Multicultural Terminology – Update

Engage culture with a deep understanding of the words that define it. In this newly updated report, we cover diverse consumer perceptions of traditional terminology (Black, Hispanic, Latino, Asian American), cross-segment terminology (People of Color), and novel terms such as BIPOC and LatinX. Dig deeper into the labels and/or identifiers each consumer segment prefers and double-click by age, gender and more.

Activate American Parents through Culture: 2

Build connections with American parents with these consumer insights that differentiate parents from their non-parent peers along two dimensions: 1) their cultural values and related attitudes, and 2) their media habits. This presentation unveils in-depth profiles of both moms and dads through the lenses of both gender and race/ethnicity.

The Next Frontier: Young Gen Z and Older Gen Alpha

Learn more about America’s next frontier of consumers with this deep dive into kids between the ages of 9 and 17. This research applies the lenses of both gender and race/ethnicity to create cultural profiles that reveal similarities and differences among these young Americans. Join us and explore their attitudes and behaviors across key categories.

Media Habits and Channels

Build deeper connections with Americans through media with a deep dive into diverse consumer attitudes and behaviors across visual, social and audio channels. This research supports engagement and targeting with data including core locations of media consumption, the role of influencers, the Metaverse, potential disruptors, and key changes from 2021.

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our Cultural Intelligence Platform.

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David Evans
Chief Product Officer

David serves as the Chief Product Officer responsible for content, data products, and innovation. He is passionate about creating amazing products and building great places to work.

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Parents & Kids: Category Essentials

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Activate Parents & Kids Within Categories
Part of understanding parents and kids is appreciating how decisions are made in specific categories. Explore usage, drivers, and channels for specific categories that are top of mind for parents and kids, as well as additional insights brands need to fully understand parents and how they differ across diverse segments.

May 20, 2022
Natalie Griffith – Director, Product & Content

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Collage Group’s Parents and Kids Category research explores dynamics of parents and kids by ethnicity within key categories: food, beverage and QSR, personal care and beauty, infant care, media, toys and games, and travel.

Read on and fill out the form for an excerpt from our 
Activate Parents & Kids Within Categories presentation.

Part of understanding parents and kids is appreciating how and who makes decisions in specific categories. It’s also crucial to understand how parenting styles vary based on key characteristics such as race, ethnicity, generation, and gender. In this presentation, we explore usage, drivers, and channels for specific categories that are top of mind for parents and kids, including:

    • Food, beverage and QSR
    • Personal care and beauty
    • Infant care
    • Media
    • Toys and games
    • Travel

Key Finding #1: Consider the multiple factors impacting parenting style and values

Parents today are overwhelmed with information and influence – from competing information sources, to competing  parenting styles, it can be hard to make decisions in any category.

Action Step:

 Understand the specific factors that drive purchases in your category, as well as how they differ by ethnic segment.

Key Finding #2: Mealtime is an opportunity for familial and cultural connection

Mealtime is an important connection point for families, especially for multicultural parents who seek to introduce their culture to their children through native cuisine.

Action Step:

Message not just around the importance of mealtime, but around the cultural connection it enables. Also consider providing parents with accessible ways to introduce native foods to their children.

​Key Finding #3: Today’s parents give let kids share in family decision making

From mealtime and personal care to travel, parents today are involving their kids in decision making processes, big and small.

Action Step:

Recognize that there are two key decision makers when messaging to the families of today, and make sure you are communicating benefits that appeal to both parents and kids.

Key Finding #4: Use media to enable cultural connections 

Media is an important cultural connector for families today. Asian and Hispanic parents seek out shows and movies in their native language, and Black parents feel it is important for their kids to see characters that look like them.

Action Step:

Provide representation in ways that are culturally specific, and enable the learning experiences parents hope to provide – whether that is through language or representation.

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our Cultural Intelligence Platform.

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Natalie Griffith
Director, Product & Content

Natalie has over 10 years of experience in consumer insights and brand strategy, including 3+ years as lead researcher in Gartner Iconoculture’s Gen Z practice. Natalie has managed research projects across industries, including extensive work in financial services, media, technology, and food and beverage. Natalie holds a B.S. in Psychology from Tulane University.

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Aligning Multicultural Marketing to the Evolution of the American Consumer

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Aligning Multicultural Marketing to the Evolution of the American Consumer
Collage Group Joins Ad Age for a Conversation About Multicultural Marketing.

May 17, 2022
Zekeera Belton– Vice President of Client Services

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An incredible cultural transformation of the American consumer is now fully underway. Brand after brand sees the massive growth opportunity that 140 million multicultural consumers represent. These consumers–particularly prevalent among younger generations–are fueling more than 100% of U.S. population growth and are remaking the consumer landscape.

Fill out the form below to watch the replay and hear how brand leaders responded.

As the U.S. consumer landscape evolves, there’s a need for brands and agencies to improve their understanding of culture–across race, ethnicity, generation, sexuality, family relationships and more–and, in turn, evolve marketing strategies for authentic engagement. Understanding culture is grounded in the journey to Cultural Fluency, the ability to tap into shared experiences and intersectional expressions to truly activate and engage today’s diverse consumers.

Representation alone is not enough to prove that your brand cares about consumers across culture. Does your brand truly understand America’s diverse consumers? And, are you effective in authentically engaging across consumer segments?

In a recent collaboration with Ad Age, “Ad Age Next: Multicultural Marketing,” Collage Group had the pleasure of joining other leading brands, including Unilever, Twitter, BET Networks and PepsiCo, to dig deeper into multicultural consumer engagement strategies. The conversation of the panel I joined centered on the term “multicultural,” and the state of multicultural marketing–how it is evolving, best practices and lessons learned.

I was pleased to share key insights that brands need to keep top of mind to continue to be relevant and drive growth across diverse segments.

What we’re seeing across segments is that satisfaction levels of portrayals in advertising have dropped. There is a rising increase in importance of race, but also a backlash in inauthentic portrayals in advertising. Clearly, there is more work to do.

Recent Collage Group research shows multicultural Americans are increasingly interested in supporting brands that support them.

However, they are becoming less satisfied with how they’re portrayed.

With insights like this in mind, Collage Group has developed a range of solutions to help brands succeed. Our shared-cost syndicated research model embedded into our world class Cultural Intelligence Platform, gives brands access to more than 10 years of diverse consumers insights with new reports weekly. Our members also have access to our CultureRate reports that assess the Cultural Fluency of brands and ads–our database is the largest of its kind, growing annually by more than 200,000 responses. And we offer SO much more.

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our Cultural Intelligence Platform.

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Zekeera Belton

Zekeera Belton
Vice President of Client Services

Zekeera Belton is the Vice President of Client Services at Collage Group. Zekeera’s oversees the team that acts as an extension of member organization by fostering deep relationships and leveraging the full set of Collage capabilities—strategies, insights, analytics, data, peer solutions and commercial collaboration—to plan and craft specific solutions that meet member challenges. Zekeera is a results-driven marketing and communications executive with 20 years of proven performance executing private and public (government) sector B2B, B2C, and G2M campaigns and programs. She has expertise in all aspects of marketing, from strategy to execution with real world know-how of the national, regional, and grassroots strategies needed to reach niche markets, such as multicultural Americans, women, LGBT, and people with disabilities. Prior to joining Collage Group, Zekeera served as a Marketing Director for Penn, Good & Associates, a marketing services consulting firm located in Washington, DC. Zekeera holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a double concentration in Finance and Management, from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, Washington DC.

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Connect with America’s Diverse Parents

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Connect with America’s Diverse Parents
Are you effectively engaging the 62 million parents currently living in the US with kids under 18? To win in a rapidly diversifying America, it’s crucial to understand these individuals and how they’re raising their children. Keeping reading to learn more about how Collage Group can help you better connect with parents and kids in America.

April 28, 2022
Bryan Miller – Director, Syndicated and Solutions

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There are currently more than 62 million American parents living with children under 18. These individuals constitute an outsized opportunity for brands as they’re making spending decisions for both themselves and their kids. To fully capture parental attention, organizations must understand and address these individuals as parents. But as America continues to diversify, it’s becoming harder to know how to authentically connect with parents of different cultural backgrounds.

Read on and fill out the form for an excerpt from our Parents and Kids : Connect with America’s Diverse Parents presentation.

Collage Group’s Parents & Kids Program offers organizations the insights they need to fully understand parents and how they differ across race, ethnicity, and generation on important issues and topics, at both the consumer and category level. The program also provides primary research on young kids to ensure organizations appreciate the full picture of the current American family. The program’s inaugural webinar series consists of 5 presentations, listed below.

The first presentation is attached here as both a downloadable pdf document and a webinar replay. It offers brands three recommendations to better connect with parents, as well as a warehouse of insights to help brands activate on the recommendations.  The recommendations are:

    1. Speak to the stresses and challenges many parents face
    2. Position your brand as a tool to help parents move their kids closer to their goals
    3. Help parents educate their kids around core culture and identity issues

Several key findings and next steps from this presentation include:

    1. Younger parents, especially Gen Z, are less likely to think that having kids should completely change their lives. Embrace younger parents’ desire to have it all by acknowledging this sentiment and how it shapes their reality.
    2. Multicultural parents place a higher emphasis on their children achieving financial success. Position the desire for their kids’ financial success within the context of persevering through challenges, children realizing the fruits of their parents’ labors, and having the means to take care of loved ones.
    3. Moms are more likely than dads to teach or plan to teach their kids about other identities, including other races, other cultural groups, LGBTQ+ identities, and differently abled people. Prioritize communicating with moms when offering tools to parents that want to teach their kids about these identities.
    4. Around two-thirds of Hispanic and Asian American parents are raising their kids to be bicultural—i.e., actively and fully embracing both being American and of another culture. Consider light-lift social media activations around culturally-specific holidays to drive resonance within the segment, and educate those outside of it.
    5. Almost half of all parents—and 3 in 5 black parents—believe that girls will have a harder time achieving success because of their gender. Acknowledge the gender-related challenges many moms have faced in their own lives, while clarify the steps you’re currently taking to reduce sexism.

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our Cultural Intelligence Platform.

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Bryan Miller

Bryan Miller
Director, Syndicated and Solutions

As Director of Content, Bryan leads the content team that produces all of Collage Group’s syndicated research and oversees the AdRate and BrandRate ratings products. Bryan holds a Master of Arts from Georgia State University’s Philosophy and Brains & Behavior Program, a Master of Science in Applied Economics from the University of North Dakota, and a Doctor of Philosophy from Johns Hopkins University in the Philosophy of Science, the Philosophy of Psychology and Bioethics. Outside of work, Bryan is a passionate film buff and lover of great food.

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How Multicultural Americans (Moms, Dads, and Non-Parents) Celebrate Mother’s Day and El Día de las Madres

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How Multicultural Americans (Moms, Dads, and Non-Parents) Celebrate Mother’s Day and El Día de las Madres
Mother’s Day is an important holiday for Americans of all backgrounds, but Multicultural segments—especially moms and dads versus non-parents—have nuanced attitudes and celebration styles. Read on for insights curated from our Holidays and Occasions research.

Mother’s Day is one of Americans’ most beloved holidays. It’s a day dedicated to Moms (and maternal figures), honoring their important role in the family. 85% of Americans celebrate it, with an especially strong emphasis from Hispanic Americans (91%). Mother’s Day has the fourth highest average per-person spending of any holiday or occasion according to the National Retail Federation. Mother’s Day occurs every second Sunday of May, which means this year (2022), it will be on May 8th.

Download the attached presentation and take a look at a few key insights and implications below:

However, it’s important to note that while motherhood is celebrated all over the world, it doesn’t always occur on the same date as it does in the United States. For instance, some Latin American countries such as Mexico, El Salvador, and Guatemala celebrate Mother’s Day (El Día de las Madres) on May 10th every year. Many Hispanic-American consumers with heritage from these countries, especially Bicultural and Unacculturated, may prefer to uphold the tradition on the day from their country of origin instead of—or in addition to—the date Mother’s Day is celebrated in the United States. So, this is an important nuance not to be overlooked when activating on multicultural consumers. Plus, it offers an additional day to connect with your brand’s target consumer groups!

As your brand strategizes on how best to resonate with multicultural consumers, take note of the key similarities and differences in how each racial and ethnic segment (as well as differences among Parents and Non-Parents of each demographic) perceives of and celebrates Mother’s Day. Download the attached presentation and read on for key insights and takeaways.

Key Insight #1:

Hispanic Americans are highly involved on Mother’s Day, and this is true for both Parents and Non-Parents. They have higher celebration rates compared to other segments and are usually more likely to participate in celebration activities like hosting a barbecue/cookout, giving cards, and buying gifts.

A Deeper Look:

For Hispanic Americans, Mother’s Day is a family affair. Everyone comes together to honor the matriarch of the family. “It’s important to celebrate mothers because they are the building blocks of the family and they are the teachers,” says Maria Miranda, assistant director of the Arizona Latino Arts and Culture Center. Typical celebrations include extended family gatherings with plenty of food, music, and flowers.

Collage Group’s research on Family Connection underscores the importance of family relationships for Hispanic Americans. Mother’s Day is a natural extension of the segment’s love and appreciation for close family bonds and festive gatherings.

Action Step:

Acknowledge Hispanic Americans’ culturally-dual Mother’s Day celebrations, including the difference in celebration dates, through your marketing efforts. Incorporate the nuances that Hispanic Americans consider meaningful aspects of the holiday, such as large family gatherings with food and music.

Key Insight #2:

Black and Asian parents (both Moms and Dads) feel especially strongly about celebrating ALL the women in their life for Mother’s Day.

A Deeper Look:

Our research on Cultural Traits has showed us that these two segments are highly community-oriented, which likely explains their stronger association with Mother’s Day as a holiday honoring all women. Parents of these segments are particularly attuned to the role that other women in their communities play in raising their children, such as sisters, aunts, cousins, Godmothers, and friends.

For the Black segment, celebrating all women may be driven by the community’s history of adversity and the necessity to create a strong network of support for one another. It’s possible that as many Black Americans become parents themselves, they reflect even more strongly on the role that many women in their community had played in helping to raise them. 

For the Asian segment, celebrating all women may be driven by the segment’s cultural emphasis on respect and humility. Many Asian countries are more collectivist, meaning that social norms prioritize the community over the individual. This may help explain why Asian Parents would be more likely to want to recognize the contributions of all women on Mother’s Day. 

Action Step:

Create cross-cultural appeal by expanding your brand’s Mother’s Day marketing efforts to be inclusive of all women that play an important maternal or supporting role in the family. Connection with others is a theme that consumers across backgrounds resonate with universally. Be sure to infuse authentic cultural cues and segment-specific nuances to connect deeply both within segments, as well as across segments.

Contact us via the form below to learn more about how you can access deeper insights on our cultural intelligence platform.

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How Consumers Across Generations Celebrate Mother’s Day

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How Consumers Across Generations Celebrate Mother's Day

Learn how American consumers prepare for and celebrate Mother's Day.

Mother’s Day presents ample opportunity for brands to connect authentically with consumers across generations. Collage Group’s Holidays & Occasions research provides insights on a wide scope of important events that occur throughout the year. In addition to Mother’s Day, members get access to research on holidays such as Thanksgiving, Hispanic Heritage Month, Halloween, Christmas, plus several more. Fill out the form below to view a sample from this year’s Mother’s Day study on Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X and Boomers. 

This past Mother’s Day, Pandora launched a thoughtful campaign aimed towards younger generations that features Netflix sensation and Stranger Things actor, Millie Bobbie Brown. 

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