If we consider cross-cultural marketing in its purest form, we need to think about consulting experts in a variety of different ethnicities and crafting multilingual and multicultural advertisements and promotions. This can become expensive, challenging and quite frankly, a very scary road to travel.
Having said this, Australia is a multi-cultural country, so considering strategies to embrace people from a variety of different cultures is not only thoughtful, but it also makes good marketing sense. The problem that many businesses face however, is that whilst many owners and managers recognise these benefits, they have no idea how to start a focused cross-cultural marketing campaign.
In a previous blog, we spoke about smart marketing goals where you learn to break large goals down into bite sized goals, to make achieving them easier and less threatening. It is the same with cross-cultural marketing; you simply need to start off with something small and familiar and then build up to a fully-fledged cross-cultural marketing strategy.
If this sounds achievable for you, then there is actually a very easy and simple way to market your products or services to other cultures without spending a lot of money. In short, all you need to do is to continue as normal, but tailor your messages in such a way that they are meaningful to your broad cultural customer base.
Marketing using cross-cultural holidays
As marketers in Australia, we spend a lot of time and energy creating marketing campaigns for the holidays. These include Christmas, New Year, the Queen’s Birthday and Easter, as well as Australia Day, Labour Day and more recently, we have tagged on Cyber Monday and Black Friday from the US.
On all of these holidays and celebratory occasions, we craft a marketing campaign specific to each holiday. So for example, we have Christmas sales, Boxing Day sales, New Year sales, Australia Day sales and so on. The easy way to turn this idea around and market to people of other cultures is to craft campaigns focused on a variety of multi-cultural holidays as well.
After all, we all know that the best marketing strategies are designed to appeal to a specific targeted audience and to be successful, these campaigns must be meaningful and memorable. Creative marketing is already part of your repertoire, you simply have to refocus it towards cross-cultural holidays.
For example, how easy is it going to be to extend your Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year marketing strategies to include the Chinese New Year at the end of January? Did you know that on the 2013 census, 4% of people stated that they had a Chinese heritage, which equates to around 960,000 people who celebrate the Chinese New Year in Australia? The same percentage of people have Italian or Dutch ancestry, making 12% of our population (nearly 2.9 million people) your potential customers from just 3 cultures.
Just imagine if you only target two Chinese, Italian and Dutch holidays with your marketing campaigns. How many more customers could you gain? Consider the Feast of Epiphany on January 6th next year. This national holiday in Italy is a huge part of their Christmas celebrations and marks the time when the 3 wise men visited Baby Jesus in the manger.
In Italy, they hold a 4 day festival with races and processions to celebrate the Feast of Epiphany and since this is a Christian celebration, Latin Americans and many other European cultures also celebrate this religious holiday. This opportunity has not gone unnoticed in the USA where both Disneyland and Disney World have celebrations and festivities targeting this holiday every year.
If you could tap into just a few of these cultural celebrations with your marketing campaigns, and if you could turn first time buyers into loyal customers, you will significantly increase your customer base to a remarkable degree. All it takes is a little forethought and some creativity and you can stand out from your competitors by simply offering more meaningful and thoughtful messages to your customers.
At Chilli, we are experts in crafting multi-cultural communications and marketing campaigns, so contact us and we can start designing your 2017 cross-cultural marketing campaign today.