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Chapter 14 Ethnic, Racial, and Religious Subcultures

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1 Chapter 14 Ethnic, Racial, and Religious Subcultures
By Michael R. Solomon Consumer Behavior Buying, Having, and Being Sixth Edition

2 Opening Vignette: Maria
Why does Maria’s mother refuse to use convenience products? What would you guess is Maria’s ethnic background? Is the family gathering indicative at all of her culture? What activities does she undertake that identify her with a culture?

3 Subcultures and Consumer Identity
Group memberships within society at large Ethnic and Racial Subcultures Ethnic Subculture: A self-perpetuating group of consumers who are held together by common cultural or genetic ties, and is identified both by its members and by others as being a distinguishable category. Ethnicity and Marketing Strategies High-context Culture: Group members tend to be tightly knit, and they are likely to infer meanings that go beyond the spoken word.

4 Mountain Men Contemporary Mountain Men share a strong sense of identity and community.

5 Marketing to Subcultures

6 Ethnic Products Tex-Mex cuisine is popular in Scandinavia. This ad appeared in a Swedish magazine.

7 Is Ethnicity a Moving Target?
De-ethnicization Refers to the process whereby a product formerly associated with a specific ethnic group is detached from its roots and marketed to other subcultures. The “Big Three” American Subcultures African Americans Hispanic Americans Asian Americans New Ethnic Groups Ethnic and Racial Stereotypes

8 Tiger Woods Tiger Woods’ multiracial background illustrates the complexity of ethnic identity in the United States.

9 De-ethnicization of Bagels
Bagels have been de-ethnicized and are now part of mainstream culture.

10 Discussion Question Advertisers frequently try to depict the “big three” consuming their products as this ad for The Children’s Place clothing does. What are the benefits of using multi-ethnic models in advertisements? Does this advertisement do a good job reflecting ethnic diversity of the target audience?

11 African Americans and Hispanic Americans
12.3 percent of the U.S. population (2000 Census) Differences between blacks and whites in consumption are very subtle Hispanic Americans: “Hispanic” describes people of many backgrounds 60 percent of Hispanic Americans are Mexican Puerto Ricans are the next biggest group at 10%

12 African Americans in Advertising
Many national brands routinely use African American models.

13 Distinguishing Characteristics of the Hispanic Market
Youth: Median Age is 23.6 (U.S. average: 32) Family Size: Average household is 3.5 people (U.S. average: 2.7) Importance of Family: Preference to spend time with family affects consumption activities Going to the movies is a family event Convenience products are not as important

14 Ethnic Products Hispanic celebrities such as Shakira, Ricky Martin, and Gloria Estefan are increasingly successful in popular music.

15 Hispanic Web Portals

16 Levels of Acculturation: Understanding Hispanic Identity
Refers to the process of movement and adaptation to one country’s cultural environment by a person from another country. Ethnography: The study of immigrants as they adapt to life in a new country. Acculturation Agents: People and institutions that teach the ways of a culture. Culture of Origin Culture of Immigration

17 Segmenting Hispanics by Acculturation

18 A Model of Consumer Acculturation
Figure 14.2

19 Processes of Immigrant Adaptation
Movement: Refers to the factors motivating people to physically uproot themselves from one location to another. Translation: Attempting to master a set of rules for operating in the new environment. Adaptation: Cultural learning that leads to new consumption patterns Assimilation: When immigrants adopt products, habits, and values that are identified with the mainstream culture. Maintenance Resistance Segregation

20 Perspectives on Ethnic Adaptation
Ethnic Pluralism: Argues that ethnic groups differ from the mainstream in varying degrees, and that adaptation to the larger society occurs selectively. Progressive Learning Model: Assumes that people gradually learn a new culture as they increasingly come in contact with it. Host Culture

21 Asian Americans Chi: Feng Shui:
An invisible energy current that is believed to bring good or bad luck Feng Shui: Translated literally as “the wind and the water” Fastest growing minority group in the U.S. The most affluent, best educated, and most likely to hold technology jobs of any ethnic subculture Prosperous Asians tend to be very status conscious Advertising featuring celebrities can be very effective in reaching this group


23 Discussion Question Asians are often depicted using high-technology products as in this ad for McAfee Security software. Why are Asians a good target audience for this product? What other products would do well to target the Asian segment of the population?

24 Religious Subcultures
The Rise of Spirituality: Explosion of religion in popular culture Old and New Religions The Impact of Religion on Consumption: Not studied extensively in marketing (too “taboo”) Religious affiliation has the potential to be a valuable predictor of consumer behavior

25 Megachurches Some U.S. megachurches have more than 20,000 members.

26 Meeting the Needs of Subcultures
Specialized ethnic media, like this magazine for Muslim women, are springing up to meet the needs of underserved American subcultures.

27 Influence of Religious Groups
Religious groups can influence companies’ decisions by encouraging their members to boycott products or stage protests.

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