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  • Author Bhupesh Shah

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    28

    Feb 2008

    ethnic marketing – what’s the big deal?

    Posted by / in Marketing / Link

    A recent article on Adage.com called “Marketers: We Don’t Get How to Do Diversity” made me laugh.

    Seems that the majority of the big marketing gurus in 60 odd companies surveyed by executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles believed that multicultural marketing was critical to their business but about 24 of them said they can’t quantify it. Come on! What a cop out!

    The financial worth of multicultural segments is relatively easy to determine…at least here in Canada. According to Marketing Magazine, South Asians, Chinese, Italians and Portuguese account for more than $36 billion in annual expenditure, or 24 per cent of the total market dollars in the GTA. The South Asian market is worth $12.6 billion annually in Toronto alone.

    But it’s not just about not knowing. I think it’s also about not caring. Getting the senior exec to buy-in and support multicultural or ethno-marketing was a significant roadblock for the marketing gurus. And who wants to fight that battle when it’s easier to stick with the status quo?

    I think it’s pretty simple…if you want to connect to your customer, you need to know your customer. Doesn’t matter if they’re black, white, brown, yellow, pink or maroon. Okay it DOES matter if they’re maroon but that’s probably a medical issue not a marketing issue. You have to understand your customer in their own environment. This means doing what Unilever just did – shaking up the ranks to reflect the opportunities that exist in their market. The marketing departments of companies that feel that multicultural marketing is a good strategy need to be as diverse as the targets they are trying to reach. Some of the enlightened ones have already figured out that woman make purchase decisions (yes really!) and now have woman represented in senior management. I believe it’s time to extend this line of thinking to include other market segments.

    Don’t get how to do diversity? It’s worthwhile to find out.

    25

    Feb 2008

    Closing time…every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.

    Posted by / in Consulting / Link

    One of the challenges with consulting is that you can be an active part of a team while you’re working on the assignment but once the gig is over, you’re back to being a free agent again. No more understanding the business, developing the strategy, ratifying the marketing plan, recommending the tactics, helping it execute and constantly thinking about how to make it better. It becomes an obsession while you’re there because you want to add value and see the company become significantly more successful as a result of your efforts. Unfortunately, when it’s time to move on, it can be hard to slam on the brakes and change course.

    I don’t generally find this to be a problem but sometimes you really connect with the company and stopping is a bit difficult. Consulting for TLBC (The LaparoscopicBAND Center) in Toronto was an incredible experience due to their super friendly staff and the fact that I was able to contribute towards their efforts in helping people make positive lifestyle changes. I even made some personal changes myself as a result…and am lighter, happier and healthier! Those that I care about are benefiting from my experience since I’m spreading the gospel to them as well. So it’s with a heavy heart and a lighter body mass that I bid adieu.

    As SemiSonic said in their one hit wonder back in 1999: “…every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.”

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    24

    Feb 2008

    initial musing

    Posted by / in Marketing / Link

    I have a lot of thoughts on marketing and life that I would love to share here so this is the first step. Now if this was SEO’d to the hilt you’d be here because of my marketing expertise but I know that you’re here because I asked you to check this out or because you’re inherently curious and after reading about ethnicomm, Fortune Hunters (on CBC) or seeing some of my postings in other forums like Marketing Profs, SmallBusinessBrief etc, you decided “hey who is this guy and what does he have to say”?

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