Automotive Ad Trends: Targeting Multicultural Consumers

BY Kathy Crosett
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U.S. automotive sales this year are likely to come in at around 14.5 million units, significantly below last year’s volume. With so much pressure on the industry, auto manufacturers will target multicultural consumers to build business. The COVID-​19 pandemic isn’t the only cause of market pressures. This week, Ford announced a new CEO will steer the company this fall who acknowledged that technology is a key factor in disrupting the industry, especially from Amazon, Tesla, Apple and Toyota. Automotive ad trends are also changing. One that many dealerships are focusing on is spotlighting multicultural consumers.

Automotive Ad Trends: Targeting Multicultural Consumers

Did you know that “Hispanic, Black and Asian American consumers are aware of 10 to 20% fewer car brands than the general population.” Even more importantly, multicultural consumers account for nearly 40% of the U.S. population. New Nielsen research shows that these consumers are influenced by different types of advertising that automotive ad creators should pay attention to.

Hispanic consumers are tuned into digital advertising. In general, these consumers are younger and pay close attention to their mobile phones. Hispanic shoppers also over-​index for having great recall regarding automotive ads they hear on the radio or see in outdoor advertising.

Black consumers listen to radio ads. But they also recall radio and out-​of-​home advertising. Researchers found that Black consumers who watch six or more hours of TV every day consider 5.5 brands, which is more than the 4.9 brands that all Black consumers consider.

And for Asian Americans, print ads and social media make a difference in their purchase path. TV is the top source of automotive ad recall for 73% of Asian American consumers. However, print is second, at 40%, for these consumers. At the time of purchase consideration, Asian Americans who spend four or more hours a day on social media check out 4.6 automotive brands before they make their final decision. And for Asian Americans who spend more than six hours a day online, the number of automotive brands considered jumps to 5.5.

When it’s time to go car shopping, consumers, on average, check out 3.6 brands. By race and ethnic group, here’s how the numbers break out:

  • Non-​Hispanic White 3.5
  • Black 4.9
  • Hispanic 5.1
  • Asian American 3.3

There’s an interesting discrepancy in the Nielsen data. While multicultural consumers are aware of fewer brands than white consumers, they consider more brands when they’re actively in the purchase funnel. Your automotive ad clients can successfully target multicultural consumers by paying attention to the media formats they use and by buying ad space in those formats.

Media Mix and Automotive Advertising

In general, here is what new car shoppers say about media influence and recall regarding automotive advertising:

  • TV 84%
  • Print 29%
  • Digital 20%
  • Radio 13%
  • Out-​of-​home 10%
  • Direct mail 9%

If your auto dealers haven’t been adjusting their media mix, start a conversation with them now. You can show them where consumers live, by zip code, in your local market, by reviewing the consumer demographic data that’s available in AdMall from SalesFuel.