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Metaverse, TikTok, AR – Best Practices for Engaging Diverse Consumers in Media

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Metaverse, TikTok, AR – Best Practices for Engaging Diverse Consumers in Media
Learn how Americans across races, ethnicities, and generations engage with emerging technology and media, including the metaverse, AR, VR, emerging social media platforms, and influencers.

November 21, 2022
Jill Rosenfeld – Research Manager

Media is a major aspect of consumers’ everyday lives, and today’s media landscape is always changing. Technologies like the metaverse, augmented reality, and virtual reality, along with emerging trends in social media like influencer marketing, have the potential to change people’s everyday lives. For brands and advertisers across industries to succeed, they need to understand how people feel about these new technologies, their current usage rates, and if they are interested in using them in the future.

Read on and fill out the form for an excerpt from our
Best Practices for Engaging Diverse Consumers in Media presentation.

Collage Group’s 2022 study on emerging media provides insights across races, ethnicities, and generations on Americans’ behaviors around the metaverse, AR, VR, wearable smart devices, and NFTs. It also looks at newer and emerging social media platforms like TikTok and BeReal, and the power of influencer marketing.

Key Findings: The Metaverse

    • Millennials, alongside Hispanic and Black Americans are more likely to have tried the metaverse and to believe it is for people like them.
    • 1 in 2 Americans want to learn more about the metaverse and they want brands to play a role in that education. This desire is particularly strong for Black Americans.
    • Entertainment is the most popular reason Americans are interested in the metaverse today. This is particularly true for Black and Hispanic Americans.

Context:

Millennial and Multicultural Americans, particularly Hispanic Americans, are keen to try new technologies as soon as they come out. For Millennials, they have grown up in an era of new tech adoption and now have relatively more resources to buy in to the new tech. Multicultural Americans often turn to technology to explore the world and their own culture, as well as the culture of others.

Many Americans expect brands to be more than just the products and services they offer. Black Americans especially want brands to step up on a host of issues. The lack of clarity still surrounding the metaverse makes it an important opportunity for brands to play a guiding role.

Entertainment holds the key to consumers’ current use (video games, digital concerts, experiences, etc.) and future appeal. Since the metaverse is still in an experimental development phase, entertainment is the most compelling reason for consumers to give the tech a try.

 Action Steps:

    • Develop your metaverse marketing strategy with early adopters – Millennial and multicultural consumers- in mind.
    • During this early phase of the metaverse, take steps to educate consumers about this emerging technology. This can include specific information on what is and isn’t considered the metaverse, the promise the technology holds, and what consumers can expect from your brand on the metaverse.
    • When connecting with Americans on the metaverse, prioritize entertainment experiences. Sponsoring a concert or sports game on the metaverse will be a way to tap into the many Americans who want to use the platform for these experiences.

Key Findings: AR, VR, and Wearable Devices

    • Americans are still not using AR or VR technology at high rates, although many are likely using AR without knowing it.
    • Asian and Hispanic Americans are most likely to use wearable devices. Health and fitness is the leading reason to use these devices, particularly for Asian Americans.

Context:

Many Americans may be unaware that they have used AR in their everyday life because they don’t relate the experience they had with the label of AR. As a result, the concept of “augmented reality” doesn’t have as much traction with consumers as the specific uses and platforms do.

Multicultural Americans, particularly Hispanic and Asian, have a strong passion for fitness. They are more likely to enjoy working out and a wearable device such as an Apple Watch or Fitbit allows them to stay connected to their fitness goals. But, while many Americans use their wearable for fitness, they are also glancing at their wearable throughout the day.

 Action Steps:

    • Don’t get caught up in labeling the technology your brand offers. Many are enjoying the experience they are getting from this technology, even if they don’t use the terminology.
    • Make marketing “glanceable” so that emails and newsfeeds can work in the small screen of the wearable as well.

Key Findings: Social Media and Influencers

    • Short content is the star of social media platforms, and that is especially true for TikTok. Americans lean into short videos whether they are on TikTok for just a few minutes or way longer.
    • While most Americans think that marketing coming directly from brands is more trustworthy than an influencer, they also find influencers and content creators to be trustworthy sources of information.

Context:

TikTok is known for its “snackable” content, and the desire for Americans to see shorter videos aligns with why this platform became so popular to begin with. Shorter content gives viewers control over how much they watch. Even if they end up watching many videos, it still feels more manageable than committing to one, longer piece of content.

Consumers are savvy about influencer marketing, and partnerships with influencers who are transparent and trustworthy will feel more authentic to them. People don’t expect an absence of advertising on social media, but they do prefer it to be clearly identified as such.

 Action Steps:

    • When advertising on TikTok, keep it “snackable” and deliver videos less than one minute in length.
    • When partnering with a content creator on social media, select those that are authentic and trustworthy including offering transparency and honesty in their decisions and potentially going out of their way to combat misinformation.

Other Holidays & Occasions Research Articles and Insights from Collage Group

Jill Rosenfeld

Jill Rosenfeld
Research Manager

Jill is a Research Manager on Collage Group’s Cultural Insights team focusing on the LGBTQ+ and Gender membership. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan’s Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. In her spare time, Jill enjoys exploring Washington DC’s restaurant scene and practicing yoga.

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Winter Holidays: Key Insights and What Brands Need To Know

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Winter Holidays: Key Insights and What Brands Need To Know
Learn how American consumers across racial and ethnic segments prepare for and celebrate the winter holiday season.

October 24, 2022
Elizandra Granillo – Analyst

Holidays and occasions are focal points for many Americans. These events afford people the opportunity to express their cultural traditions and individual preferences through decorations, food and beverage, entertainment, and activities.

Read on and fill out the form for an excerpt from our Multicultural Holidays & Occasions presentation.

Holidays and occasions are also important for brands and organizations as they present an opportunity to deepen connection with consumer segments. Day of the Dead, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Kwanzaa are some of the key winter holidays brands need to understand to fully capture diverse America’s attention. Collage Group helps marketers and insights leaders connect around this holiday by providing insights that clarify the similarities and differences in how American consumers across diverse segments prepare for and celebrate these holidays. These insights allow for more efficient and effective activations that capture greater mind and market share.

Key Insight #1:

Half of Hispanic Americans celebrate Día de los Muertos, and Bicultural and Unacculturated Hispanic Americans are most comfortable with brands activating on this holiday.

Key Insight #2:

Most Americans celebrate Thanksgiving, and most Multicultural consumers incorporate non-traditional foods into their Thanksgiving celebrations.

Key Insight #3:

 Hispanic and Asian American segments are more likely to say their Christmas celebrations go beyond “typical” American traditions.

Key Insight #4:

Kwanzaa is a popular holiday, celebrated by many Black Americans.

Key Insight #5:

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are popular for Black and Asian Americans as a kick-off to holiday shopping.

What can my brand do to activate on a winter holiday?

    • Focus on authenticity, particularly if you are activating on a holiday that is celebrated by a specific racial or ethnic segment like Dia de los Muertos and Kwanzaa. Depending on your brand, this can include a simple celebratory message on social media pages, helping to educate the broader community about the holiday, or partnering with in-segment content creators to tell their own personal stories related to the holiday.
    • Highlight what is non-traditional about traditional American holidays. Thanksgiving and Christmas are celebrated across racial and ethnic segments, but many Multicultural Americans have their own traditions based on their heritage and upbringing. Showing the range of how Americans celebrate will appeal to many Americans, particularly those who are Multicultural, and who have different ways of celebrating.

Other Holidays & Occasions Research Articles and Insights from Collage Group

Elizandra Granillo
Analyst

Elizandra is an Analyst on Collage Group’s Product & Content team. She is a 2020 graduate from San Diego State University where she studied Anthropology. Her previous experience includes ethnographic research across the Tijuana-San Diego Border Region.

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Brand Leaders from Paramount, H-E-B and Adsmovil on Engaging and Celebrating the Hispanic Culture

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Brand Leaders from Paramount, H-E-B and Adsmovil on Engaging and Celebrating Hispanic Culture
Last week I had the pleasure of moderating an engaging and informative panel discussion on how brands connect with and celebrate Hispanic culture. 

September 20, 2022
Victor Paredes – Executive Director of Cultural Strategy

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The conversation was very enlightening and purposely held on September 15, the first day of National Hispanic Heritage Month.

Read on and fill out the form below to watch the full presentation,
How Great Brands Are Engaging & Celebrating Hispanic Culture.

As the Executive Director of Cultural Strategy at Collage Group, I am always looking to help our members absorb our research and findings, and then move to translate that insight into actions. With cutting edge research and analysts on our team, including trusted colleague Jack Mackinnon – Collage’s Senior Director of Product and Content – I’m perpetually armed with the latest information and data. In having our discussion, I wanted to share Collage’s findings so others may better understand how to approach and celebrate the culture.

Jack joined our panel briefly to offer a quick synopsis on modern Hispanic consumers. He first provided a bit of background on Hispanic and Latino terminology and the internal diversity within the Hispanic culture. These insights are key to any company looking to capture this audience’s attention. Jack also discussed the growth of the Hispanic community over time. One noteworthy stat he cited involved the projected increase of the population; multicultural Americans are expected to surpass the non-Hispanic White population in the 2040s.

With such growth anticipated, brands must take notice and prepare a strategy to reach these segments.

According to Collage research, 57% of Hispanics celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Not to mention just under 15% of the Black population and almost the same percentage of the Asian population also observe the month. Moreover, 91% of the Hispanic community either wants, or doesn’t object to, brands including Hispanic Heritage Month within their advertising.

Panelist Maria Twena, Chief Marketing Officer at Adsmovil, noted that 55% of U.S. Hispanics either came to the country as a child at age 10 or younger, or are a child with at least one foreign born, immigrant parent. Maria says this bilingual, bicultural segment is the largest within the Hispanic market. Brands are aware of this demographic and as one part of their approach, they have wisely started to vie for this group’s attention.

“They inform brand and product purchases at a very early age,” she said of this cohort. “We’re seeing brands focus more on that segment as a primary target – keeping the Spanish dominant as a core target, obviously, but a shift is slowly happening in terms of who the primary target is.”

Angel Bellon, Senior Director of Creative Strategy & Cultural Intelligence at Paramount, called on brands, and society as a whole, to move away from the myth that advertisements toward the Hispanic community must include Spanish speaking.

“It’s time to look beyond language,” Angel said.

“Of course, Spanish language advertising is going to be effective because its recognition of our identity as a community,” Angel continued. “However, the representation of our community is much more current when we look at English speaking.”

Angel cited that 75% of Hispanics are fluent in English and only 28% are unacculturated. Thus, a large majority of Hispanics are totally comfortable with English, according to Angel, and brands should act accordingly when looking to market to them. Angel’s point was a good one. Spanish speaking ads are indeed effective and there are certainly times and cases where the Spanish language should be used. However, as Angel also stated, Hispanics are very comfortable with English and brands must appreciate that when looking to reach out to the community.

Brands, Angel said, should celebrate Hispanics’ cultural impact, and ought to educate people on the diversity that exists within the Hispanic community. Such a strategy would be much more effective than merely concentrating on language.

Erika Prosper, Senior Director of Customer Insights at H-E-B, and the first lady of San Antonio, suggested that brands and marketers move to better understand codeswitching and thus work it within their advertising. She also instructed brands to hire more people of color, but warned against simply bringing talent aboard for the sake of diversity. “You need to make sure that you’re not just bringing them for show, but you’re following through with their recommendations,” she said.

“You have to have that inclusion at every level, not just the top of the table, and not just at the bottom, putting products on the shelf,” Erika said. “You have to make sure it’s all the way through.”

Angel agreed, saying often times when brands stumble or get it wrong, it’s usually those brands that have not had a single person of color involved in the strategizing.

“If you don’t have those people, then you shouldn’t be talking to the Latino community,” Angel said. “Targeting to the Hispanic community is a privilege, not a right.” Brands, Angel said, should ask “have we earned the right to speak to the Hispanic community?” And that benefit is earned through initiatives and recognizing that the community is there every day of the year, not just during Hispanic Heritage Month.

Erika made a point to mention her attire, a colorful outfit that displayed Hispanic heritage pride. She articulated the importance of being able to dress in a way that gave a nod to the culture, and to do so without fearing backlash or a negative response from her employer or colleagues.

One of my favorite parts of our conversation was getting a chance to hear Maria speak a bit about the children’s book she authored titled, “School Crossing.” Her own childhood was the inspiration as she, like the book’s main character, grew up in America, living with her immigrant Hispanic family.

“I always felt like an outsider at home and at school, and society didn’t reflect my life experience.” So, with that, Maria set out to create a character that was “authentically Latina, bilingual, bicultural and struggling with belonging.”

It is a very interesting, and also an important story, as there are many young people out there who share that experience and who can relate.

Again, I thought our panel discussion was fascinating! It was interesting, educational and informative, as we offer numerous tips to brands on how to better connect with the Hispanic community.

The entire conversation can be viewed by filling out the form above, and any company looking to gain further insights on engaging with the community can contact Collage Group at the form below.

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Other Recent Hispanic Research Articles and Insights from Collage Group

Victor Paredes
Executive Director of Cultural Strategy

Victor Paredes, Executive Director of Cultural Strategy, is a successful marketing and advertising executive leader with proven experience in building practices that drive brand equity, sales, traffic, and qualified leads. His marketing experience spans sectors such as entertainment, hospitality, healthcare, consumer packaged goods, and direct to consumer services. Throughout his career, Victor has led multidisciplinary teams of strategy, digital, media, promotions and public relations experts in building effective integrated marketing platforms. Today, Victor brings keen cultural competence to creative storytelling and leadership in a multicultural America.

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Holidays & Occasions: Hispanic Heritage Month

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Holidays & Occasions: Hispanic Heritage Month
Over half of Hispanic Americans celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month and want brands like yours to activate on this important commemoration. Keep reading to learn how consumers prepare and celebrate this important time.

September 13, 2022
Elizandra Granillo – Analyst

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Hispanic Heritage Month is a time to celebrate the ever-expanding contributions of Hispanic Americans to U.S. history and culture. The celebration originated as Hispanic Heritage Week in 1968 but was expanded to a full month in 1988. Rather than taking place within a calendar month, Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15th to commemorate the Independence Day of the Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. It also includes Independence Day for Mexico on the 16th, Chile on the 18th, and concludes with Día De La Raza, on October 12th.

Read on and fill out the form for an excerpt from our
Multicultural Holidays & Occasions: Hispanic Heritage Month  presentation.

According to Collage Group’s Holidays and Occasions survey from 2021, 57 percent of Hispanic Americans celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, supporting Hispanic-owned businesses and enjoying traditional Hispanic foods and beverages, among other activities. 42 percent of the total Hispanic population say that this month is important to them, making it an opportunity to activate and reach Hispanic American Consumers.

Key Insight #1

Most Hispanic Americans are open to brands activating on Hispanic Heritage Month in their marketing and advertising. They are mostly interested in brands educating Americans about Hispanic cultures and their continued influence in America today.

Most Hispanic Americans are open to brands activating on Hispanic Heritage Month

Implication:

Create marketing campaigns that not only celebrate Hispanic Americans but inform people on specific contributions of Hispanics to American culture.

Key Insight #2:

Bicultural consumers are most likely to buy products that are created specifically for Hispanic Heritage Month.

Implication:

Craft culturally specific messaging that speaks on the duality of feeling both American and Hispanic. Make use of Spanglish to connect with bicultural consumers.

Key Insight #3:

Hispanic Americans take pride in their persistence in the face of adversity and would like to see brands acknowledging their people’s perseverance.

Implication:

Bring the spirit of perseverance to your campaign, highlighting the importance of resilience for people in the Hispanic community.

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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Other Recent Asian Research Articles and Insights from Collage Group

Elizandra Granillo
Analyst

Elizandra is an Analyst on Collage Group’s Product & Content team. She is a 2020 graduate from San Diego State University where she studied Anthropology. Her previous experience includes ethnographic research across the Tijuana-San Diego Border Region.

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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 Americans Celebrate the Lunar New Year

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How Americans Celebrate the Lunar New Year
As we enter the Year of the Tiger, learn how Asian American consumers prepare for and celebrate Lunar New Year. Read on for insights curated from our 2021 Holidays & Occasions research.
 

This Lunar New Year begins on February 1st and will say goodbye to the year of the Ox and hello to the year of the Tiger. Lunar New Year marks the beginning of the calendar year for cultures whose months are moon-cycles and notes the transition between different zodiac signs. Celebrations in 2022 will last from February 1st to February 15th. While Lunar New Year is often referred to as Chinese New Year, it is important to note that Non-Chinese cultures that celebrate New Year do not necessarily refer to their holiday as Chinese New Year. For example, South Korean Americans often celebrate Korean New Year and Vietnamese Americans celebrate Tet. Regardless of how they refer to the holiday, almost half of Asian Americans we surveyed told us they celebrate Lunar New Year!

This holiday is really about time with the family and is usually celebrated with having special foods or drinks. Gifting money in red or white envelopes is also a key part of the occasion, generally given from adult to children to pass on a year of good fortune and blessings.

Another key part of this holiday is the climactic ending, through the Lantern Festival. Activities that are part of the Festival include lion and dragon dancing, stilt-walkers, and eating rice balls.

While Asian Americans are split on whether brands should activate on Lunar New Year, very few believe that they should never do it.

If brands do market or advertise about Chinese or Lunar New Year, Asian Americans — especially those who are Chinese and Vietnamese — want them to explain what the holiday is about and why it is important. Sharing stories of people celebrating the holiday, showing how to support Asian Americans and the issues this segment faces, and what people can do to celebrate the holiday also rank quite high.

So what should your brand do if you want to market during the Chinese or Lunar New Year?

  1. Build awareness of what Lunar New Year is and why it is importantPanda Express did just this through an ad campaign in 2021 that taught a young child the important traditions that make up this holiday.
  2. Highlight how your brand supports Lunar New Year through increased representation of the components that make this holiday special (e.g., food, décor). Target offers a great example of this by highlighting Jing Gao on their website. Jing Gao is the Founder and CEO of Fly By Jing and is bringing Chinese flavors to American households. Her brand is now available at Target.
  3. Include Lunar New Year as part of a larger promotion of holidays and occasions celebrated by multicultural consumers. American Girl has done this through their recently released celebration outfits which includes Lunar New Year, Kwanzaa, Diwali, Eid al-Fitr, and Hannukah.

Learn more about our Holidays & Occasions work and contact us via the form below to access deeper insights on our cultural intelligence platforms.

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How Americans Are Celebrating Black History Month

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How Americans Are Celebrating Black History Month
Learn how American consumers across racial and ethnic segments prepare for and celebrate Black History Month. Read on for insights curated from our 2021 Holidays and Occasions research.

January 14th, 2021
Alonzo Bailey – Data Analyst

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Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing their central role in U.S. history. Also known as African American History Month, the event grew out of “Negro History Week,” the brainchild of noted historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African Americans. The month of February was officially recognized as Black History Month in 1976, as a part of the country’s Bicentennial celebration.

Fill out the form to view a sample from our research on consumer attitudes and behaviors around Black History Month.

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Today, over three-fourths of Black Americans celebrate Black History Month, compared to one in four Americans across all racial and ethnic segments.

Most Black Americans Celebrate Black History Month

Nearly a Quarter (24%) of Hispanic and Asian Americans Also Celebrate the Heritage Month.

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The most common way Americans participate in Black History Month is by supporting black-owned businesses. Overall, about one in five of Americans do this, with half of all Black Americans likely to do so. Education about Black history and culture and the challenges facing Black Americans today, is also a common way many celebrate the month especially for Black Americans. Multicultural segments overall are more likely to participate in all the methods of celebration of Black History Month than White Americans.

Supporting Black Owned Businesses and Self-Education Art the Most Popular Ways American Celebrate Black History Month

Multicultural Americans are more likely to celebrate black history month than white Americans.

Do you do any of the following to celebrate or acknowledge Black History Month?

Total Pop. Hispanic Black Asian White
Support Black owned businesses
20%
20%
50%
21%
13%
Educate myself about Black history and culture
20%
23%
43%
19%
14%
Educate myself about issues facing Black Americans today
16%
18%
37%
18%
11%
Make of share posts about Black History Month on social media
12%
13%
33%
9%
8%
Buy products that brands/companies release specifically for Black History Month
11%
13%
27%
10%
7%
Donate to charities or non-profits that support Black Americans
10%
9%
22%
10%
7%
Have foods or drinks from Black culture
9%
9%
30%
9%
5%
Attend events celebrating Black culture (e.g., parades, festivals)
7%
8%
27%
8%
3%

In 2021, Barbie celebrated Black History Month by adding a new doll honoring Dr. Maya Angelou to their “Inspiring Women” collection. Started in 2018, the line celebrates real-life role models which includes other Black Women such as Rosa Parks and Ella Fitzgerald. Barbie also pledged “that more than 50% of future Role Models honored will be Black, indigenous, or women of color,” and has committed to supporting Black-focused non-profits.

How have your personal and profession priorities changed due to the COVID pandemic, if at all? Please rate the level of importance being happy and healthy plays in your life today versus one year ago.

Much more or somewhat important:

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Fill out the form below to contact us to learn more about our Black Consumer and Holidays & Occasions research.

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Other Recent Black Research Articles & Insights from Collage Group

Alonzo Bailey

Alonzo Bailey
Data Analyst

Alonzo is an Analyst on Collage Group’s Product & Content team. He is a 2019 graduate of Morehouse College. His previous experience includes business and psychological research at Johns Hopkins University – Carey Business School, Columbia Business School, and the University of Maryland.

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America Now: Economic Inequality

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America Now: Economic Inequality

This research is part of a series that expands on our 2021 Roundtable Presentation, America Now. Read on to learn how Americans feel about income inequality in the United States today.

Income inequality is a significant issue in the United States today, especially for many non-White Americans. Data from the Federal Reserve shows that the top 10 percent of earners in the country hold almost 70 percent of the nation’s wealth. And findings from the 2019 Survey of Consumer Finances reveal that White families’ median wealth ($188,200) is almost eight times that of Black families ($24,100) and five times that of Hispanic ($36,100) families. Brands and companies have an opportunity to connect with diverse America by understanding their perceptions on income inequality and taking steps to address the gap.

In a recent survey, we asked Americans how serious of a problem they feel economic inequality to be in the country today. While almost half of all Americans believe it’s a “serious problem”, Black and Hispanic Americans were much more likely to hold this belief. Non-Hispanic White respondents are clearly divided on this issue based on party affiliation – with 60% of White Democrats viewing it as a serious problem compared to only 26% of Republicans.

Multicultural Americans – Especially Black Americans – Are More Likely to See Economic Inquality as a Serious Problem in the Country

White Democrats Are Far More Likely than White Republicans to View it as Such

% of respondents who rated economic inequality in the country today as a very serious problem

[ninja_charts id="4"]

* White demographic breakdown: Democrat 60%, Republican 26%, Other 40%

Further, when asked what political and societal issues were most important to them in today’s climate, 27% of Black Americans named reducing economic inequality followed closely by Asian Americans (24%) and Hispanic Americans (22%). For White Americans, the percentage who listed reducing economic inequality as a top three priority issue, was far lower. However, far more White Democratic Americans listed it as a top issue.

Multicultural Americans Are Also More Likely than White Americans to Believe that Reducing Economic Inequality is Personally Important 

One reason may be the wealth gap between white American and black and Hispanic Americans. 

Reducing economic inequality is one of the three most important issues to me:

[ninja_charts id="5"]

* White demographic breakdown: Democrat 24%, Republican 8%, Other 14%

And it is not just that multicultural Americans are more sensitive to income inequality—they’re also more willing to reward brands that take active steps to reduce it. In fact, 40% of Asian Americans, 39% of Black Americans, and 34% of Hispanic Americans share this sentiment, compared to just 27% of White Americans. Again, White Democrats are more closely aligned to the multicultural segment – 43% of White Democrats are more likely to buy from brands who support reducing income inequality, compared to only 15% of White Republicans.

And They Are More Likely to Reward Brands that Step Up in this Space

White Democrats align closely to the Multicultural Segment in their preferences; 30% of Americans are more likely to buy from brands that support reducing income inequality.

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* White demographic breakdown: Democrat 43%, Republican 15%, Other 24%

Now you may be thinking, what can my brand do to address a systemic issue as challenging as income inequality? The answer: quite a lot! Below are some examples of what brands and companies are doing.
    • Costco, among other retailers, recently raised their minimum wage way above state and federal mandates. The move resulted in significant media attention.
    • Mastercard has launched the Center for Inclusive Growth ; their twitter page (@CNTR4growth), provides daily updates and insights for the public.
    • Noodles & Co teamed up with the app Even to offer instant pay options to their employees as well as a suite of financial wellness tools that include budgeting and organizational guidance.
Sources:
    • Federal Reserve Data. “Distribution of Household Wealth in the U.S. Since 1989.” October 2021.
    • Federal Reserve Data. “Disparities in Wealth by Race and Ethnicity in the 2019 Survey of Consumer Finances.” Sept 28, 2020.
    • ABC News. “Costco raises minimum wage to $17 an hour as businesses hike pay to retain workers.” October 28, 2021.
    • Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth. Mastercardcenter.org
    • Payments Dive. “Noodles & Co. teams with Even.com on financial wellness benefits.” September 16, 2019.

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Holidays and Occasions: Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Year’s

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Holidays and Occasions: Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Year’s

Learn how American consumers across racial and ethnic segments prepare for and celebrate the winter holidays of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Year’s.

The beginning of winter brings a multitude of holidays for Americans to celebrate. While revelers will still have to cope with COVID-19 protocols during the 2021 festivities, vaccines and experience may better equip Americans to celebrate more openly this year than last. With an eye toward shifts in consumer behavior we bring you our updated findings from the 2021 Holidays & Occasions study to help your brand understand consumers’ changing expectations and how they plan to celebrate during this holiday season.

Fill out the form to view a sample from our research presentation,  Multicultural Holidays & Occasions.

Christmas is one of the most beloved and widely celebrated holidays in America. Over three-quarters of each racial and ethnic segment celebrate it, with its highest popularity among Hispanic and Non-Hispanic White Americans. Consumers from many backgrounds celebrate the holiday by enjoying seasonal food, listening to Christmas music, and putting up festive decorations.

However, multicultural consumers say that their Christmas celebrations often differ from typical depictions. Cultural nuance at Christmas is key information for brands producing traditional Christmas marketing content as it may land as unrelatable to some Americans consumers. often Over a quarter of Hispanic and Asian consumers agreed that their versions of Christmas celebrations split from a standard “American Christmas.” This is often the case because of the inclusion of cultural celebrations.

Christmas celebration traditions

Hispanics often celebrate Christmas through several holidays such as Noche Buena (Christmas Eve), Three Kings Day (January 6th), Las Posadas (the 9 nights leading up to Christmas), and Tamaladas (a Christmastime tamale-making party). Highlighting these holidays activities during the winter months is a great way to connect with Hispanic consumers.

Hanukkah is the Jewish eight-day holiday observed on the 25th day of Kislev (typically in December). Also known as the festival of lights, this holiday is celebrated with a nightly menorah lighting, special prayers, and fried foods. Though fewer than one in ten Americans celebrate the holiday, over a third of all consumers actively welcome brands to celebrate it through advertising and marketing efforts.

American retailer Target was able to successfully do this in their most recent holiday ad campaign “The Holidays Are Meant To Be Shared” which features a family celebrating Hanukkah by lighting the menorah, among several other different holiday activities.

Kwanzaa, a seven-night holiday observed from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1, is a holiday to honor African American and Pan-African culture and traditions and celebrates African American unity. Though not widely popular with the total population, the holiday holds great importance for many Black Americans. According to our study, 18% of Black Americans celebrate Kwanzaa. This is also a holiday for brands to consider celebrating. About 30% of Black consumers agreed that all brands should celebrate Kwanzaa in their advertising. This provides the opportunity for brands to highlight Kwanzaa and its traditions to educate Americans unfamiliar with the holiday and connect with Black consumers.

Finally, New Year’s also provides brands an opportunity to be the life of the party. New Year’s is celebrated by most Americans across all ethnic groups, though Hispanics are particularly likely to enjoy the festivities. Although sparkling wine is typically a toasting drink to usher in the new year, other alcoholic beverages play a prominent role in the celebration. Hispanic consumers are most likely to drink beer and hard cider during their celebrations, while Black consumers are most likely to drink liquor/spirits.

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Friendsgiving 2021: How Should My Brand Celebrate?

Friendsgiving 2021: How Should My Brand Celebrate?

It’s not too late to activate! With over 30% of Americans (and 40% of Gen Z and Millennials) celebrating “Friendsgiving,” brands will want to make their mark on this growing tradition. Keep reading to learn what consumers expect from brands like yours this Friendsgiving.

“Friendsgiving” is a holiday tradition adjacent to Thanksgiving. It’s an opportunity for friends to gather with friends in addition to, or instead of, with family. While Friendsgiving may sound like the latest fad or a “cutesy” holiday, it’s a legitimate way younger generations celebrate—and it’s likely to stick around.

Read on for key facts about the holiday, insights on how younger American consumers celebrate the Thanksgiving season, and ideas for how your brand can get involved.

What is ​Friendsgiving?

Friendsgiving is an informal bonus holiday that started gaining traction in 2013. The origin is unclear, but the term caught on via social media and it’s surged in popularity with younger Americans in recent years. Nowadays, Friendsgiving is a seasonal staple with about four in ten Gen Z and Millennials celebrating.

Holiday Stress Chart

Friendsgiving celebrations often take place sometime before Thanksgiving, as a precursor to the big day. But for many young adults who live far away from home and family, Friendsgiving acts as a substitute to the more formal family feast. It’s also a reflection of shifting family dynamics. Young adults today are delaying marriage and parenthood at greater rates than previous generations. This factors into their emphasis on friends, neighbors, and coworkers as a “chosen” family.

Moreover, almost half of Gen Z and Millennials cite amily as a source of stress around holidays. It’s no wonder, then, that many turn to their friends for comfort and joy.

Friendsgiving Celebrations

Since Friendsgiving is such a new way to celebrate Thanksgiving, it isn’t confined to the well-established traditions of Turkey Day. Rather, it’s open to interpretation—which may be just what individualistic younger generations find appealing about it. Many Friendsgiving celebrants incorporate a mix of classic Thanksgiving elements and personal flair. This means that brands have ample room to play in connecting with younger generations for Friendsgiving.

One way that Gen Z and Millennials are evolving Thanksgiving-season celebrations is by including non-traditional foods. Two-thirds of younger Americans do this, likely driven by the generations’ inherent diversity as well as their desire for novelty. Friendsgiving, free of socially imposed “rules,” offers the perfect opportunity to try out new and exciting flavors, experiment with recipes, or to share one’s culture through food.

Graph illustrating groups that have more than Thanksgiving dishes

Brand Activation

Two brands that have developed an excellent Friendsgiving campaign that appeals to Gen Z and Millennials are Amazon and S.Pellegrino. These brands partnered together in 2020 to create a virtual, shoppable “Guide to Friendsgiving.” The online storefront features videos and recipes by Kristen Kish, an LGBTQ+ Korean-American culinary expert and Top Chef championIn this pandemic-friendly activation, Kish connects with her friends via video chat to recreate their favorite recipes with a twist. From the site, shoppers can download recipes and purchase ingredients to be delivered by Amazon Fresh.

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