September 12, 2011
How to Craft a Multicultural Web Strategy
by Nataly Kelly, Benjamin B. Sargent, Donald A. DePalma  

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One consequence of globalization is large populations of emigrants around the world. People leave their home countries to find work, improve their quality of life, or begin a new life. Some are quickly assimilated into the societies they enter, while others maintain some of the language, culture, and lifestyle they brought with them. This report addresses that latter category of people who choose to hold on to the linguistic and cultural aspects of their former lives once they settle in another country. It also outlines the opportunity and best practices for companies that could market to these multicultural populations.

This migratory phenomenon spans the globe. The United States is home to large clusters of immigrants and residents, with those of Hispanic origin accounting for a substantial chunk of the population. Sizable immigrant communities find their homes in Germany (Russians and Turks) and the United Kingdom (Poles and South Asians). Throughout the report, we use the Hispanic population in the United States as the proxy for any domestic multicultural marketing effort. The practices that we describe by and large will apply to any online activity you undertake to address the ethnic populations that matter most in your country.

The sections in this report address a series of questions, designed to help companies make the most informed decision regarding how – or if – to target a domestic population that uses a language other than the official (or generally accepted as official) tongue of that country:

  • Data. In this section, we discuss why language matters on the web. We describe the impact of language availability on consumer views, purchasing, and decision-making. We also consider why the Latino community in the United States should matter to companies operating online. Here, we present datapoints on spending power, internet adoption rates, and marketing preferences of the U.S. Spanish-speaking market. If you are addressing a different language community in the U.S. or in another country, your business case will include equivalent information for that population.
  • Case studies. In this section, we present 12 examples of companies with the need, potential, or reality of a domestic multicultural presence for U.S. Latinos on the web. Eight of the cases are in the same market sector – consumer and business high technology – and demonstrate opportunities that have yet to be met. Four others reveal the best practices of consumer-oriented companies that are marketing online to Latinos.
  • Recommendations. In this section, we outline the major options that companies should consider for developing and maintaining web content for the U.S. Spanish-speaking market.

  • Global Leaders
  • Technology Vendors
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Pages: 48

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