Culture may have a more profound impact on the way people consume content than previously thought. A new study found that ads, articles and videos tailored to an audience’s language and social beliefs have a much greater chance of resonating with said audience and driving positive customer actions.
Digital Lives 2018: World of Digital ‘Everything’ through a Cultural Lens is a new study published by the Culture Marketing Council: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing (CMC). It aims to uncover exactly how culture affects the behaviour of users in the digital realm, with a sharp focus on content sharing and consumptions, as well as the types of platforms used.
The CMC studied 3,500 respondents between the ages of 13 and 49, with an equal number of Hispanics, Hispanic African Americans and non-Hispanic whites taking part. The main takeaway is that brands can increase the power of their messages by advertising and publishing organic content in a person’s “cultural space”. This is true for all ages, languages and segments.
Almost three-quarters of non-Hispanic African Americans said they are more likely to make a purchase from a specific brand if they try to advertise in cultural spaces, while around two-thirds of Hispanics said the same. It is perhaps no surprise that Spanish language content drives more engagement with Hispanics. This highlights the importance of transcreation and translation when creating content campaigns.
“Demography and digitalization are the two most transformative and disruptive forces in our society today,” CMC Research Chair Nancy Tellet said. “The growth and influence of the Hispanic consumer, coupled with the pop culture and political clout of African Americans, is transforming the American cultural landscape. At the same time, digital platforms are emerging and evolving, giving consumers more control over the on-demand content they crave.”
While the study is focused on the Americas, it also offers a general insight into how content tailored to different cultures can amplify the power of brand messages. Authentically diverse content appears to be a positive factor across the board, as it increases engagement with the majority of multicultural audiences and also a portion of millennial non-Hispanic whites.
“The results of this new study re-emphasize the strategic imperative of placing culture at the center of your campaigns and valuing culture specialists as key advisors,” said CMC Chair Isaac Mizrahi, who is also co-president and COO of Alna. “We hope this study can help marketers maximize success with in-culture, multicultural segmented efforts and avoid costly cultural gaffes in their mainstream marketing.”
A few tips for successful content transcreation include creating an audience profile covering preferences, lifestyle, language and goals to build a persona for creatives to tailor content towards. The profile also helps the audience grasp the keywords they are searching for by considering localised keyword behaviour. It is important that cultural content is topically and stylistically relevant to audiences. Beyond transcreation, more basic translation can also work if the content can engage with audiences in a positive way. Either way, culture is set to play a big part in content creation in 2018.