Mr. Rogers said this change is happening "in real time." The new
system will include linking compensation to multicultural
performance, he implied. "You've got to make sure this marketer has
four or five objectives for the year," he said. "One of those
objectives has to be how did you do against multicultural."
Walmart's main multicultural agencies are Lopez Negrete
Communications, one of the biggest independent Hispanic agencies,
African American work, and Interpublic Group of Co.'s Asian agency
Procter & Gamble, the biggest multicultural marketer, made a
similar move about a year ago to push multicultural budgets into
individual product categories and brands from a more centralized
multicultural unit and tie managers' bonuses to multicultural
performance. Ethnic agency assignments were also realigned. And as
a precaution, P&G guaranteed its multicultural agencies'
revenue for three years to help smooth the transition.
Mr. Rogers spoke today to a record 700-person crowd at the ANA's
annual multicultural gathering. In a fireside chat with Jacqueline
Hernandez, chief operating officer of Telemundo Communications
Group, Mr. Rogers said he had just come from running the New York
marathon on Sunday and drew applause for delivering Walmart's
slogan in Spanish: "Ahorra mas, viva mejor." ("Save more, live
He described his own journey as a marketer over the last decade
and said there are three levels of "getting" multicultural
marketing. The first level of "getting it," he said, "is not doing
anything." The second level is recognizing its importance, but
keeping efforts pretty siloed, like spending some money during
Black History Month and Hispanic Heritage Month and considering the
multicultural box to be ticked off. "The next step is where we are
-- making multicultural part of everything we do," he said.
He cited Walmart's recently rolled out layaway program, saying
it's incredibly popular among multicultural customers and that "not
leading with a multicultural message, that 'd be crazy." He also
said Walmart found that the interaction with recent digital ad for
the layaway program, done in both Spanish and English, was three
times higher for the Spanish-language version.
For Walmart's current Christmas price-guarantee program, each
multicultural ad is based on a relevant insight, Mr. Rogers said.
The humorous African-American spot revolves around food and
extended family. The camera zeroes in on individual food items like
pie, and adds a price tag to show how affordable it is . One
missing pie is tracked down to an errant uncle sneakily devouring
it in another room, so he's relegated to the kids' table at the
The Hispanic spot is based on abundance, with a huge stack of
gifts at the store, which Mr. Rogers said has prompted store
managers to ask if they can build a similar stack in their own
premises. A third TV ad, in Chinese, reflects a Chinese saying
about comparing prices three times before buying.