Image item
Dear friends + colleagues,
With today's Zoom, social distancing, and WFH, we miss talking all things branding with fellow industry professionals. This letter was designed to provoke an exchange of thought between the cognitive and creative in modern branding. We hope you’ll read and take something away from it.  
Through our years of experience in brand strategy and design, we’ve spoken with several brands that want to better understand the ever-evolving multicultural U.S. consumer. With the latest release of the U.S. census data, that task is more challenging than ever – in fact, US citizens who identify as two or more races has grown by 276%
To explore this data point's impact on brand strategy, we fielded a consumer survey of (125) self-identified multi-racial people to better understand their cultural perceptions of brands.
These are a couple of our observations on multicultural consumers…
Branding Challenge:
Consumers of the same race have different motivations based on their families' origins.
While respondents self-selected into traditional racial categories, they also identified themselves according to where their families originated from. Their brand expectations varied based on both criteria. Meaning: catering to your brand's target audience requires identifying distinct differences and finding common ground among cultural segments.
So…what are the implications?
Considering country of origin in addition to racial diversity further enlightens our understanding of the consumer. Using AI consumer insight tools to dig deeper into how country of origin influences consumers habits and expectations is absolutely critical to brand strategy development.
It's important to understand your business segment (personal care, food, fashion, etc.) as well as your cultural segments. What are the cultural commonalities? Identify a culture's psychographics and the iconography that crosses segments. Then, leverage your design elements to make everything come alive.
Branding Solution:
Bring order to the complexity.
Remember: If you’ve seen one multicultural consumer, you’ve seen one multicultural consumer. In our research, ingredients, flavors, and scents proved important to people of all races, countries of origin, and generations, but the importance of other brand attributes varied significantly.
How does that impact brand strategy?
Understanding consumers’ generational status is vital. Creating a multicultural matrix of your consumer micro-targets to clearly identify their expectations will help you find a sweet spot for your brand that involves not only demographic attributes but also psychographics and behavioral characteristics. If there's one certainty from this survey, it's this: there's a common similarity between ALL Americans -- individuality. Do the work to individualize your multicultural target consumer so you can discover how best to speak to them.
It’s not about making a brand look “Americanized.” It’s about celebrating tradition but modernizing it for the NEXT generations. Be bold. Experiment with multi-language labeling on pack. Liven up colors and photography. Make product art look modern, with cultural symbols that harken to the consumer’s heritage. Newer generations are all about transparency and authenticity—both in regards to ingredients and brand mission. Be sure to consider authenticity when designing your iconography and colors.
Brand Spotlight
Siete Foods
A family-owned Mexican American food brand from Austin, Texas founded by a family of 4th generation Latinxs, Siete understands who their target consumer is in the vast multicultural matrix. They know they are a brand that wants to speak to Mexican heritage across generations. It's there in their tagline: “honoring the past and sparking the future.” Their packaging reflects that as well -- it's bright and bold, combining traditional Hispanic cultural motifs that speak in a modern way to the NEXT generations. 
If you'd like to hear more about our U.S. multicultural consumer research insights, reach out to us at or
Until next time,

Julie, Kate, + Pato
Image item