Cultural identity and segmentation

Journal of Arts Marketing Issue 18 – July 2005

How can marketers respond to cultural identity?
Many of us have targets for attracting visitors, audiences or participants from specific ethnic groups. But ethnicity is not a particularly useful basis for segmentation. Several pieces of research suggest that there are differences in the way different ethnic groups engage with the arts and museums but that other factors have an equally powerful influence. Among these are Telling it Like It Is: black and minority ethnic engagement with London’s museums (2004) in which Damian Tissier and Samir Singh Nathoo point out that, across all ethnic groups, managerial and professional groups are more than twice as likely to visit museums and galleries than other social groups and that 35 to 54 year olds are much more likely to visit than the over 75s and 16 to 24 year olds. Arts Council England’s report Focus on Cultural Diversity: attendance, participation and attitudes (2003) also identified a clear association between attending arts events and economic status and age regardless of respondents’ ethnic origin.
COI Communications, the Government’s communication agency, has published research that helps marketers unpick the complicated relationship between age, ethnicity and cultural identity. You can download Philly Desai, Karen Roberts and Christine Roberts’ summary report Dreaming the global future – identity, culture and the media in a multi-cultural age at www.coi.gov.uk…
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