The Internet Is Ripe For Multicultural Campaigns

Susan Bratton kicked of the 2006 Chicago ad:tech conference by introducing the new ad:tech chair, Drew Ianni, who will take over for Susan who will remain with ad:tech as Chair Emeritus. Keynote speaker Kay Ferguson, Co-CEO of Burrell Communications Group, a multicultural agency recently honored by Ad Age as the Multicultural Agency of the Year.

Ferguson's major point during her keynote was to inform the audience multicultural audiences are on of the Internet's fastest growing segment. Ferguson cited 77 percent of African Americans have Internet access at home, 64 percent have broadband and the segment spends 5 hours online each day, all figures higher than the general population.

Ferguson shared several recent campaigns her agency has done including an online campaign for Toyota which garnered a nine percent CTR, a 2o percent download rate for the campaign's radio spot and a 75 percent download rate for the campaign's wallpaper themes. A second campaign for Verizon, called Realize" capitalized on the fact more African Americans start business that the general population and placed an African American woman in a glass walled store for 21 days with nothing but Verizon broadband equipment for use in starting er own business. Ferguson said the campaign generated resulting sales 285 percent above expectation and delivered 1.5 billion PR impressions.

In the Q and A, Susan Bratton asked Ferguson what the three "rookie mistakes" are when an agency is launching its first multicultural campaign. She said don't use hip-hop or basketball themed elements as they may come off as too stereotypical. Oddly, most of her campaigns contained those elements.

by Steve Hall    Jul-24-06   Click to Comment   
Topic: Industry Events, Online, Trends and Culture   

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This is just industry BS. How can "multi cultural" be a segment? One person is of one culture, not multiple cultures. And culture is not dictated by skin color alone, even though the data is all predicated on skin color. To suggest that African Americans are just discovering the Internet is insulting. Also insulting, as you pointed out, is the fact that almost every Burrell campaign is stereotypically "hip-hop" - never multi-cultural, but uni-cultural to a fault.

Posted by: evil grimace on July 24, 2006 5:35 PM

Looks like Kay could have used a better PPT technician for her speech. As could many of the other presenters throughout the day. These events were unfortunate when they happened and made you feel bad for the presenters because it made them look bad.

It is kind of funny though...for an industry that prides itself so much on presentation and outward appearances, there were more than a few goofs that elicited murmurs from the audience.

Posted by: PPT Tech on July 24, 2006 9:25 PM