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Shell Reaches Out to Minority Audiences

HOUSTON -- Realizing that one size does not fit all when it comes to engaging American consumers, Shell Oil Products US is making an earnest marketing effort to reach out to minority consumers.

"We recognize that our own diverse workforce is a microcosm of the general population," said John Jefferson, director of diversity for Shell. "Shell knows its employees appreciate our commitment to diversity, so why should our customers feel any differently?"

Shell uses specific marketing approaches, segmented marketing budgets and measurable goals to reach the three largest ethnic groups in the United States: White/Anglo, Latino/Hispanic and Black/African-American.

Since a car is one of the most expensive purchases many people will make, Shell believes car owners recognize that the quality and brand of the gasoline they purchase is an important decision as well. The company recognizes that Latino/Hispanics and Black/African-Americans have tremendous buying power and purchase significant amounts of gasoline, lubricants and other consumer items sold under the Shell brand.

To ensure the company's message reaches all targeted audiences, Shell's general-market advertising agency, J. Walter Thompson, coordinates its approach with the company's specialized marketing agencies, Lopez Negrete Communications, which targets the U.S. Hispanic community, and SWG&M, which reaches out to African-Americans.

To date, Shell has increased its spending to reach the Hispanic community by more than 200 percent from the previous year. Shell and Lopez Negrete have focused on four primary communication channels: TV shows and networks with high Hispanic viewership, Spanish-language radio, magazines and in-language point-of-purchase materials.

Shell also has been very pleased with the success of its African-American outreach. SWG&M has developed a customized program that includes print, television and radio. For the recent launch of Shell V-Power, radio commercials were created specifically for an urban radio format.
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