Hyundai Hires First Black-Owned Marketing Agency

America is undergoing a cultural awakening. Brands are beginning to realize the importance of sensitivity to diverse buyers. Hyundai has hired its first dedicated black marketing team to deepen its relationship with a vital consumer base. Automotive marketing is big business and it’s beginning to make some exciting cultural shifts.

What will Culture Brands do for Hyundai? 

A black Hyundai logo against a beige background
Hyundai logo | Raymond Boyd via Getty Images

Black Americans spent $400 billion on consumer goods in 2020. That buying power gets attention from brands. Hyundai ranks as the seventh most popular automotive brand among this segment. The automaker recognizes the opportunity to strengthen its relationship with black buyers as an opportunity to tap into a significant market

Andrew McCaskill, Senior Vice President, Global Communications and Multicultural Marketing, Nielsen said: “When it comes to African-American consumer spend, there are millions, sometimes billions of dollars in revenue at stake, With 43% of the 75 million Millennials in the U.S. identifying as African American, Hispanic or Asian, if a brand doesn’t have a multicultural strategy, it doesn’t have a growth strategy.”

He went on to say, “The business case for multicultural outreach is clear. African-American consumers, and all diverse consumers, want to see themselves authentically represented in marketing, and they want brands to recognize their value to the bottom line.”

Culture Brands is a young agency with top-tier talent

Marketing dynamo Eunique Jones Gibson has had an incredible career in marketing. She made a name for herself, working with brands like Microsoft, AOL, and Custom Ink. She founded Culture Brands in 2017 to bring black voices to the forefront in marketing content. 

“Brands and organizations would come to us and would ask us to create culturally relevant content or sponsor the content we were creating,” Jones Gibson said in an interview. “And so I saw where the career that I once had and the path I was on really started to intersect.”

Hyundai considered five black-owned agencies when filling this critical role. Maryland-based Culture Brands beat the competition to the multi-year contract. This is another outstanding success for the young agency, which is sure to leave its mark on the automotive industry.

How black buyers will influence markets in the future

A row of Hyundai cars on a sales lot
Hyundai cars | Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

Social media is the fastest-growing marketing avenue, and black buyers are active and vocal users. Black car buyers are three times as likely to recommend a brand on social media and 37% more likely to purchase based on a brand’s stance on cultural issues. Brands will have to have an online relationship with this demographic to remain relevant.

Black buying power has risen 114% since 2000, and that growth will continue over the next 40 years. This is one of the fastest-growing segments representing 20% of projected U.S. population growth through 2060. Brands that don’t consciously cultivate their relationship with black buyers will miss the wave.

Hyundai ranks seventh in popularity with black shoppers. Each brand higher on that list already employes a dedicated black marketing agency. Brands that are not marketing to the black consumer are already behind the curve.

The automaker may be late to the game, but it’s hired a marketing powerhouse that will likely catch the brand up at lightning speed. Culture Brands is a formidable agency founded by top talent. It’s up to the task of building Hyundai’s relationship with the fastest-growing consumer demographic. 

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