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Hyperlocal Digital Strategies: Identify Consumption Habits to Determine Levels of Acculturation


In the fifth article of our series on Hyperlocal Digital Strategies presented by MAXPOINTAmy Gittelman, General Manager, National Agency Sales, at MAXPOINT, says that multicultural marketers need to ensure that their ads are actually reaching the right audience segments by paying attention to important details like consumption habits, which can help identify which audiences are of higher or lower levels of acculturation.

Photo: Mikey Ottawa. Under CC Licence.
Photo: Mikey Ottawa. Under CC Licence.

Multicultural marketers understand the importance of knowing an audience on a nuanced level. So when the time comes to execute an expertly crafted campaign, how do you ensure that your ads reach the right audience segments?

The other day, I was talking to a colleague who comes from Vietnam. She and I spoke about identifying acculturation level based on her own family’s experience. Here’s what she told me.

A Vietnamese couple immigrates to the United States and brings their infant daughter. They raise their daughter to be in touch with her Vietnamese heritage by exposing her to customs, traditions, and ideas of their home country, and by speaking their native language in the household.

Fast-forward 30 years. The couple and their now-grown daughter are regular Internet users. In fact, both use the web as their primary source of entertainment—streaming videos, shopping, and reading the news. The couple and their daughter stay in touch with Vietnamese culture by reading relevant news and researching Vietnamese recipes online. The couple lives in a suburban area that over-indexes for people of Vietnamese origin, and the daughter lives states away, but also in a suburban area that over-indexes for people of Vietnamese origin.

Here’s when you start to notice these areas: You’ve designed beautiful creative for a digital campaign that speaks to people of Vietnamese origin across the United States. You’ve crafted messaging that accounts for generational differences and levels of acculturation. But if you’re planning campaign execution based on demographic data alone or even DMA targeting, you’re likely to waste a good deal of impressions on the wrong audiences. So, how do you identify which neighborhoods are going to give you the greatest response based on the fine-tuning you’ve already done?

Learn more about Hyperlocal Digital Strategies in our April 23 WEBINAR: The New Multicultural: Hyperlocal Digital Strategies for National Advertisers.

When Details Are King

Here’s how: Pay attention to the little things. After you dig into the analytics, you find out that the neighborhood in which the parents live over-indexes for an interest in a specific Vietnamese-language TV show. This show has been off the air for decades, but people in this neighborhood are streaming it on the web as if it’s current. There’s your ah-ha moment.

Hyperlocal identifies details like consumption habits that help you determine which audiences are of higher or lower levels of acculturation. Because one neighborhood is consuming content like this TV show while another is not, that’s a good indicator that the neighborhood where the parents live is of a lower level of acculturation than their daughter’s.

To determine acculturation level, hyperlocal digs into both online and offline data to pinpoint beacons that give away this information. It might focus on the type of content consumed, as in the above example, or it might zoom in on the language preferences of consumers. How and where consumers spend money can also highlight habits common to those immersed in the culture of their country of origin or habits of those who have adopted an American lifestyle.

When you have a digital advertising partner that can not only uncover these details, but also draw the right insights from the details, you can reap the highest rewards from your tailored messaging.

That’s hyperlocal at work. Multicultural audiences are complex, nuanced, and diverse, and targeting them is rarely straightforward. The good news is that hyperlocal advertising is built for targeting such audiences. It’s built to anticipate subtle nuances, reach audiences without waste, and turn on a dime when necessary.

This series of articles about Hyperlocal Digital Strategies is brought to you by MAXPOINT. The previous four articles published are:

– How “Mobilecultural” Advertising Can Make or Break a Campaign
– When Doing Targeted Campaigns, Keep an Eye on How All Consumers Respond
– Embracing the Total Market with Hyperlocal Intelligence
– How a Dental Brand Builds National Awareness among Hispanic Females

The final article will be published on Thursday, April 23. 

MaxPoint provides a leading business intelligence and digital marketing solution that enables national brands to drive local, in-store sales. The company’s proprietary Digital Zip® technology and the MaxPoint Intelligence Platform predict the most likely local buyers of a specific product at a particular retail location and then execute cross-channel digital marketing campaigns to reach these buyers. MaxPoint has worked with each of the top 20 leading national advertisers and each of the top 10 advertising agencies in the United States as ranked by Advertising Age. For more information, visit, follow MaxPoint on Twitter @maxpoint_int, and subscribe to the OnPoint Blog.

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