1 out of 4 children registered for kindergarten this year are Hispanic. 1 out of 7 are African American. Only 53% are Caucasian. This is down from 59%, from just two years ago. One out of 6 are Asian Americans. American demography is changing. And it is not just in Arizona, California, Texas or Florida. It is nation wide. Clients in Iowa and Washington state tell me that their towns and cities have a lot more Mexican people than ever. I’m not here to debate the politics of this or to cast judgment. It is what it is.
And yet when I ASK these clients how they have adapted their marketing efforts to accommodate these new segments, more often than not I get the “deer in the headlights” look. Uh oh, I know what that means. Simply stated, they have done nothing. They are still marketing to a vision that their customers are all “Leave it to Beaver Caucasian families with 2 children and a stay at home Mom! Or worse I get, “those folks don’t bowl.”
Duh. Of course not!!
You probably have not made a serious attempt to get their business or to tap into their culture. So why should they bowl? They don’t even know who you are or what you offer.
So here are a couple of tips to market to these NEW segments:
1. Visit or attend business meetings within their communities. Do your research and find out more about them. For examples, Hispanic people are VERY family oriented. Appeals to the family for a bowling event will resonate stronger than will a date night option. Birthday parties for children as well as teen parties also have a high appeal.
2. Make sure that you communicate in their language. Not speaking to them in their language is a sign that you don’t care.
3. Visit their churches and stores. These are “touch points” where people meet and mingle and exchange the “daily gossip” going on in their communities
4. Look at your food menus. Are you offering foods that are familiar to their palate or are you still trying to force your own style food down their throats?
5. Church fund raisers and organizations/clubs are very high priorities in this community. Are you tapped into these groups?
6. Communicate in their newspapers, radio stations and TV programming. You can’t get eyeballs and ears by not being where they are most likely to be
7 And the last tip of the day is the sign on your front door that says “Habla Espanol Aqui.” (We speak Spanish here).
In today’s economic environment, you need to explore every niche and cranny that can bring revenue to you.
And yes it will take time. Trust is like that.