Top 10 Cultural Relevancy & DEI Marketing Learnings of 2022  

January 10, 2023
by Santiago Solutions Group

2022 brought many new learning opportunities for the Multicultural and Inclusive marketing industry. Specifically, the Cultural Inclusion Accelerator™ (also known as CIA) has conducted groundbreaking research around topics surrounding the impact of culture and brand DEI on purchase intent. The Cultural Inclusion Accelerator™ was established in 2019 when its founders and multicultural marketing consultants, Carlos Santiago (SSG, CEO & AIMM founder), Lisette Arsuaga (DMI, Co-CEO & AIMM founder), and Gilbert Davila (DMI, Co-CEO, AIMM founder) observed that there was a massive under-investment in Multicultural and Inclusive segment marketing. As a result, they determined that an industry-standard advertising and programming measure for culture and inclusion was needed to inspire and prove the importance of investing in Multicultural and Inclusive segments. 

Last year in 2022, the Cultural Inclusion Accelerator™ expanded from testing cultural relevance and purchase intent in advertising and programming with CIIM™ (Cultural Insights Impact Measure) to launching the DEI Accelerator™, which helps marketers discern the importance of Diversity Equity and Inclusion reflections in advertising. Using the power of both CIIM™ and the DEI Accelerator™, the Cultural Inclusion Accelerator unveiled facts that validated the power of culture and DEI reflections in marketing. This article will summarize the TOP 10 Cultural Inclusion Accelerator’s most groundbreaking learnings of 2022.  

1. Cultural Relevance lifts brand growth by 190%

2. Cultural Relevancy, per CIIM sales attribution validation study in CPG/Retail, shows that Cultural Relevance is a major contributor to an ad’s sales performance explaining 69% of campaigns’ sales lift

3. Culture enhances Ad Effectiveness KPIs:

    • Culture enhances brand perception by 3.8x
    • Culture enhances recommendation by 2.9x
    • Culture enhances gathering information by 2.2x
    • Culture enhances ad likeability by 1.6x

4. Consumers expect brands to reflect their social stances

    • 83 percent of LGBTQ expect brands to reflect their social
    • 80 percent of Black/African Americans expect brands to reflect their social stances
    • 72 percent of Hispanics expect brands to reflect their social stances
    • 71 percent of People with Disabilities expect brands to reflect their social stances
    • 71 percent of Asians expect brands to reflect their social stances

5. More than half (54%) of Multicultural consumers do not feel seen in ads, citing they feel “invisible” or “under-represented” in ads

6. Ads with high DEI Accelerator™ scores perform significantly higher on brand trust by up to 69%. Combined, DEI + CIIM are a powerful accelerator of trust and explain 76% of trust lift

7. Multicultural and Inclusive GenZ consumers are more likely to see stereotypical representations in content

    • 84 percent of GenZ
    • 81 percent of Millennials
    • 75 percent of GenX
    • 68 percent of Boomers

8. Around 3 in 5 Multicultural and Inclusive consumers see stereotypical representations of people in advertising

9. 83% of LGBTQ+ expect brands to take public views on discriminatory policies against them –the highest of any racial or ethnic group

10. In a qualitative study by AIMM and CIA titled “Disruptive Cultural Findings: Cultural Attributes Research Study,” focused on exploring cultural drivers for positive superior cultural relevancy ratings. The study found that marketers should utilize the following culturally relevant themes in advertisements that were developed as a result of analyzing 20K+ open-ends responses across seven segments:

    • Portray consumers in a natural and authentic way that is not stereotypical or showing negative depictions
    • Be inclusive of many cultures and diversity within the same culture
    • Be inclusive of elders and portray them in a respectful manner
    • Be respectful of in-culture family interactions and rituals around food, preparing, and sharing cultural meals
    • Empower women
    • Portray diverse individuals in positions of power
    • Display positive messaging around aspirations, dreams, and the future
    • Specific to Spanish speakers:
      • Ensure mannerisms are in-culture
      • Importance of paying attention to the quality of language such as, expressions, accents, grammar, colloquialisms, etc.

Many racial inequities, biases, and disparities were highlighted due to the global Covid-19 pandemic. The Cultural Inclusion Accelerator continues to supply the Multicultural and Inclusive Marketing industry with game-changing learnings that can transform businesses and connect with the hearts and minds of consumers. Marketers and brands are responsible for acting on these top 10 learnings to create a more just and inclusive world that welcomes people of all colors, abilities, sexualities, and genders.

About us

For 20 years, Santiago Solutions Group (SSG) has guided growth pathways for scalable returns by uncovering cultural and marketplace insights.
These insights forge the fact-based foundation for effective business and brand growth strategies aligned with cultural insights across Hispanic & Asian acculturation levels, Black, LGBTQ, Non-Hispanic White, Gen Z, Millennials, and other segments.

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