Super Bowl LIV Illustrates Imperative For Multicultural Brand Strategies

With Super Bowl LIV and the impressive halftime show dominating watercooler conversations and news headlines this week – one thing is clear and that is the impact that minority audiences have on today’s mainstream culture. 

This Super Bowl, we saw the openly gay female coach in the NFL, two Latina artists headline the halftime show, and the introduction to the NFL’s “Inspire Change” initiative – dedicated to creating positive change in communities across America. The influence of minority groups and the issues that they face are trickling into mainstream media, and brand marketers need to take notice. 

In this day and age, inclusive marketing should be at the forefront of every marketer’s brand marketing strategy. However, in order to more deeply engage and grow sales through these audiences, brands need to ensure that they build communication strategies that are built on rich insights and media that mirrors the consumption habits of these audiences.  



The brands that have seen the greatest success all share a few things in common: they lead with inclusion and further engage consumers through culturally relevant ways by leveraging insights that go beyond stereotypes and surface level generalizations, such as “all Hispanics like spicy food.”  

An example of a Super Bowl marketer who excelled at using insights is Sabra Hummus. The “"How Do You 'Mmus?"  spot felt extremely inclusive and featured a diverse cast of characters who represented a wide spectrum of audiences. The spot was a great launching pad that should allow Sabra to continue to develop other multicultural initiatives that resonate and engage with their diverse consumer base. This sets the brand up for a perfect opportunity to collaborate with endemic properties and seed this message within culturally relevant content. Now the only question is… what’s next? 

According to Nielsen, minority audiences will account for 100% of the population growth over the next four decades, so it’s crucial that marketers understand how to reach these audiences.  If brands do not take these consumers into consideration, it could very likely impede future growth. 

A key component in connecting with these consumers is language and culture. According to  Kantar Group, 66% of Hispanics believe that there should be more ads created specifically for them and 72% of Black consumers, including moms, want to ensure that their culture and heritage are reflected in the media and advertising they are consuming. When we specifically look at Hispanics, three quarters of Hispanics agree that their cultural heritage is of importance to them. 

During the halftime show, we saw two Latina women from different backgrounds, one born in the US and one that immigrated to the US, take the stage to celebrate their shared culture and highlight Latin music. Their 15-minute set produced the highest ratings of the Super Bowl broadcast and reached 103 million total viewers on FOX. These ratings prove that multicultural content can drive viewership and consumption across all segments and on endemic as well as non-endemic properties.  

I hope that this trend continues and that we will see more diversity and inclusivity in both media and advertising. However, as brands embark or continue on this journey, they need to remember to leverage truly insightful data-driven communication strategies that will resonate and engage these audiences. Let’s face it, if a brand wants their business to grow, an inclusive multicultural strategy is direction they need to head in. 




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