Multicultural Marketing is Smart Marketing
The 2009 Multicultural Marketing Conference
Welcome participants and speakers.
Let me first pay my respects to the traditional owners of the land where this conference is being held today, the Eora people of the Gadigal Nation.
Having opened this conference for the past 11 years, I can say that this occasion is special in that I am welcoming delegates who, for the first time are attending this conference. I welcome and commend you for taking this positive step in learning and sharing your ideas on multicultural marketing. I am also of course very pleased to welcome back delegates who regularly attend this conference. Your quest to continuously harness your expertise strengthens the pillar of multiculturalism and makes Australia a truly lucky country.
I take this opportunity to thank the many agencies, businesses and organisations, big and small, that have been generous in sharing with us their experiences through this conference. Through their participation, others can learn from their experiences, both from their successes and challenges.
This conference could not have been more timely.
In this tough economic environment, many organisations are digging deep to ensure they remain relevant and to maintain their market position. Organisations are taking tough measures to survive in these tough economic conditions. Budget cuts are a constant occurrence, felt more in the marketing and advertising arena than anywhere .
While it may be tough times, I am encouraged to see that businesses are embracing multicultural marketing as a response to the present economic challenges, as illustrated by your attendance at this conference.
Many of you have gone back to basics, aligning your business, people and marketing strategies. Some of you focus on flexibility and agility to ensure a quick and nimble response to business and consumer needs. Even the most successful companies are adopting and leveraging on new media and technology to get ahead.
In this process, one thing is common all compete for consumer attention.
However, I cant help but single out organisations that are reaching out to the multicultural market organisations that recognise the uniqueness of their consumers. They are brave to try something new, to listen and learn things they are not familiar with, to connect with audiences theyve never dealt with before and to honestly admit things can improve.
To me, that is smart marketing.
Multicultural marketing is not rocket science.
Lets look at market-based marketing, customer centric marketing and engagement metric marketing. Just like multicultural marketing, these are aimed at achieving one thing - making the customer the centre of everything. Its a one-on-one approach!
It is not a new approach. Many have done it and we dont have a shortage of organisations here in Australia that lead in this field. Allow me to cite some examples.
Combined use of mainstream and ethnic media - The inaugural winner of the Awards in 1990, the Opera House Trust staged the Qantas National Folkloric Festival through a campaign strategy that targeted the mainstream and ethnic media equally. As a result, the Qantas National Folkloric Festival attracted ten thousand people to the opening day parade and scored near capacity houses for performances in the Concert Hall.
In awarding the first ever Multicultural Marketing Award grand winner, Mr Nick Greiner, who was then Premier said From the governments point of view, improving multicultural marketing is a very practical and relevant example of putting people first by managing better. It is in every sense a management issue.
Learning multicultural consumer behaviour and purchasing patterns - Gateway Pharmaceuticals in 1994 developed an export market in Vietnam, selling pharmaceuticals. The company observed the buying habits of Australians of Vietnamese background and discovered that large quantities of pharmaceuticals were being sent from Australia to Vietnam. The company researched their market and employed Vietnamese Australians to deal with their home government. An export was established and within five years, Gateways earnings rose from $2.6 million to $7.5 million.
Attracting a multicultural workforce - The technology services giant Cisco Technical Services Asia Pacific serves the needs of more than 60 other countries across the Asia Pacific offering a multilingual IT support service. The company chose to set up its offices in Sydney as it is Sydney that has the best qualified work force in the Asia Pacific region due to its abundance of linguistic and cultural talent. The cultural awareness provided by the staff at Cisco has been a key factor for the company in effectively communicating with its clients. External customer satisfaction surveys have shown the global team to rate exceptionally high on client satisfaction.
Engaging the multicultural market In 2006, the Australian Football League, more popularly known as AFL, achieved amazing results from a program that aimed to boost multicultural participation in football as well as integrating newly arrived immigrants and refugees into the Australian way of life. The project operated on a grand scale involving 42 schools with a high percentage of immigrant or refugee children, exposing 5,300 students to AFL. As a result, approximately 16 thousand people attended an AFL game for the first time in their lives and some 450 students participated in the AFL Multicultural Cup.
These businesses show multicultural marketing pays off that it makes a difference to the bottom line.
Almost a quarter of Australias population represent a multicultural market.
I cant think of any government service, business enterprise or community service that does not cater to people of different cultural, linguistic or religious backgrounds. Whether you are a retail shop, school, restaurant, telephone company, law firm, bank, car company, recreation facility, news agency or sports club, you will have a multicultural customer base.
This makes multicultural marketing a challenge not because it is difficult, but because it is unique. By this I mean, multicultural consumers exist across a market segment and yet they represent a segment of their own.
There is no straight forward rule or magic formula in multicultural marketing. You all work in the field and I am sure theres a lot of combined marketing experience in this room. The key to multicultural marketing is knowing your multicultural market. Who are they, what are their preferences, how will you be able to engage them and why would they want to connect with you? I guarantee that you will know what innovative and creative marketing strategies to implement, once you find the answers to these questions.
The NSW Government, through the Commission, works with agencies, businesses and the community in engaging Australias multicultural market.
The Commission is the Governments arm responsible for the development of multicultural policies. It is tasked with consulting with the multicultural community and providing multicultural services. As such you can seek advice or use the Commissions services and participate in its programs to assist with your multicultural marketing activities.
The Commission holds a Community Leaders and Youth Symposium which is attended by key community and youth leaders. You can participate and dialogue with them directly at this years symposium which will be held on 22-23 September at the Crown Plaza in Parramatta.
As the NSW Governments primary provider of language services, the Commission provides interpreting and translation services in more than 85 languages, including the more rare languages such as Swahili, Dinka and other African languages and dialects. Communicating your message in the language of your target audience personalises the information and attracts attention.
The MediaLink service of the Commission informs you of the content of non-English newspapers published in Australia. You may not know it but there are more than 100 ethnic newspapers published in Australia. Through MediaLink, you will know what matters to a particular community just by looking at the headlines. Their views can be found in the editorial or commentaries, their events are published in the Notices and your competitors advertisements are prominently displayed in Classified Ads.
This conference is an annual program that helps promote best practice in marketing. This conference highlights the relevance of multicultural marketing and the importance of being inclusive in marketing. There is no better example of this than our sponsors who, by the way, are not just making a financial contribution. Our sponsors are supporting this conference because they want the public to know that they take multicultural marketing seriously. In fact, one of the greatest achievements of multicultural marketing is garnering the support of national and iconic Australian companies The Australian Newspaper, AFL, The Commonwealth Bank, Qantas, CMC Markets, Casella Wines and this great hotel, the Westin Sydney.
In recognition of the success and leadership of organisations that focus on the cultural diversity of Australia in their overall marketing strategies, the Commission holds the annual National Multicultural Marketing Awards. This is the 20th year of the Awards and I have no doubt we will again come across marketing initiatives that others can emulate. I take this opportunity to invite you to nominate initiatives and join us on the 2nd of November at the Awards Gala Dinner which will be held in this hotel.
And, it is with pleasure that I announce the establishment of the Multicultural Marketing Network. This is a new initiative that will complement the Commissions work in promoting the benefits of multiculturalism.
The Network will be open to marketing leaders and practitioners who have responsibility for developing and implementing marketing strategies for their organisations. It will provide networking opportunities where multicultural marketing matters will be discussed and experiences shared in an informal environment. The Network will host forums where resource speakers from government, business and community sectors will be invited to address and discuss topical issues in multicultural marketing.
I invite you to register and become part of this great initiative so that, together, we can truly achieve and benefit from multiculturalism.
Just to finish off, Id like to show you a flash presentation on the Commissions EmailLink service that many of our audiences find very useful. I hope you do too.
Thank you.View the accompanying presentation. (0.8 mb)