Multicultural Consumers Fastest Growing Segment of US Population

By Jack Loechner

Originally posted on MediaPost.

Multicultural consumers are transforming the U.S. mainstream, reports Nielsen in a recent study. Propelled by the twin engines of population growth and expanding buying power, they are at the leading edge of converging demographic and social trends that are reshaping how marketers and advertisers use culture to connect with increasingly diverse customers. Understanding the cultural essence that drives multicultural consumer behavior today, marketers and advertisers are getting a glimpse of future market trends and forging a long-term relationship with the most dynamic and fastest growing segment of the U.S. consumer economy.

49.2% of children aged 9 and younger last year were non-Hispanic Whites, according to a Nielsen study that demonstrates the growing clout of multicultural consumers, who have represented 92% of the population growth in the US between 2000 and 2014. The study cites data demonstrating that multicultural consumers’ higher life expectancies and lower median ages result in significantly more years of effective buying power than their non-Hispanic White counterparts, with Hispanics in particular averaging almost 20 more years of effective buying power.

Media-savvy and socially empowered, multicultural consumers are:

  • Empowered and culture-driven shoppers, who over-index on a wide range of products and services.
  • Younger than the rest of the population, they are trendsetters and tastemakers across a broad range of categories, from food and beverage to beauty products.
  • In their prime, multicultural consumers are starting families, making plans and establishing long-term brand relationships.
  • Expressive and inclusive, which very often allows multicultural consumers to simultaneously maintain their cultural heritage and see themselves as part of the new mainstream, allowing them to mix and match endless choices and products to suit their effortless duality in lifestyles and tastes.
  • Connected and mobile savvy, multicultural consumers use their smartphones and other devices at much higher rates and more intensely than their non-multicultural counterparts.

Multicultural consumers are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population, says the report. Already over 120 million strong and increasing by 2.3 million per year, multicultural populations are the growth engine of the future in the U.S. Hispanics, African-Americans, Asian-Americans, and all other multiculturals already make up 38% of the U.S. population, with Census projections showing that multicultural populations will become a numeric majority by 2044.

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