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Jo Muse, Chairman, Executive Creative Director, Muse Cordero Chen, Inc.
February 7, 2001, 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. EST

<jo_muse> wow. More business for minority owned agencies can be a result of diversity. But if a general market firm is a great one and also diversifies it could be bad for firms like mine.
<jo_muse>The point is, minority owned shops compete with bigger, stonger general shops who also can diversify.
<jo_muse> I think great people should be able to find work without regard to race or diversity. And the big shops need people like you too. Pursure them when you graduate
<poetic3> What has been the worst strategy for targeting minorities?
<jo_muse> About the worst I've seen is a lot of that malt liquor stuff. The ads are whack and insulting
<jo_muse> Schlitz and Old E are campaigns that come to mind
<moderator> A question from jdavis: Many African-Americans are incensed that Burrell, Coleman, etc. have sold 49% to larger firms. Do you think that, in time, the demise of these firms is imminent?
<jo_muse> Yes. Right now there's a handful of black firms that are independent. The reason they sell is money and age. Even I need a retirement plan:)
<jo_muse> Soon the numbers will be smaller. The future is in embrancing the consolidation of the biz
<jo_muse> Do yall keep in the know on holding companies like Interpublic and WPP?
<ramona> What is the focal point for a firm when minoirites have various beliefs with a similar product?
<jo_muse> Focus on consumer loyalty and lifesyle. It will reveal special insights. Forget about them being minorities.
<jo_muse> As yall know, what a minority is is changing. Soon people will not care about the old race label of black, hispanic or asian instead they will focus on things like lifestyle and culture. Look there
<jo_muse> Especially young people like you and your sisters and brothers in high school. They are the the new market advertisers are interested in.
<jabari_b> Why is cultural diversity so important in advertising, and why do we focus on it so much?
<jo_muse> Because the big shops do an awful job in hiring minorities. Only about 11% of their staffs are minorities.
<jo_muse> And about 8% of their executives. It's got to get better, and people like me and others are working on it.
<jabari_b> Why is the precentage so low for minorities?
<jo_muse>Intern problems, scholarships, chats like this we want you to know its getting better
<jo_muse> I think it's because clients have not pressed agenciees to hire people like us. And agencies follow their clients.
<moderator> question from huntw: Which group of minorities seem to be the hardest to reach when advertising?
<jo_muse> didn't flavors of asian. Especially the 1st generation immigrant. Too many media choices
<jo_muse> that's didn;t flavors like chinese, japanese and korean
<jo_muse> different
<moderator> question from sbradley: What is the percentage of minorities that are hired for summer interns?
<jo_muse> Maybe about 10% nationwide. much higher in places like LA, Chicago and NYC. There are special intern programs for minorities in those cities.
<jo_muse> The AAAA have a good one. They have an office in New York if you want more info.
<jo_muse> That's the American Association of Advertising Agencies
<moderator> question from sbradley: What do you expect the percentage of minorities to be in 5 years?
<jo_muse> Maybe about 20%
<jo_muse> if anyone is interested in careers in advertising send me a resume at jo@musecordero.com. I'll pass it on.
<jo_muse> Also if you're interested in creative make sure you let me know.
<moderator> Question from erin: Is the problem in getting minorities interested in seeking out jobs in advertising or in getting them hired? where should the energy be focused?
<jo_muse> Both. But the energy has to be to invite people, all young people into our biz, its tough but lots of fun.
<jo_muse> People that stick it out can bgetin. It took me about 5 years. Maybe 8. And I had a bs in advertising. Still tough now.
<jo_muse> Don't give up.
<moderator> question from ramona: What things are being done to get the internships, scholarships for your nontraditional students?
<jo_muse> I don't know what a non trad student is ?
<moderator> ramona: A non-traditional student is not your average 18-22, single. Majority of the time they are over the age of 30 with families.
<jo_muse> Many are coming in thru strategy skills and creative.
<jo_muse> Shouldn't make a difference. Especially if they are dedicated and have good skills.
<tp25us> Why are there no Asian americans in the advertising industry?
<jo_muse> Asians are on the rise. Maybe at least as many as blacks and hispanics combined
<tp25us> what percent do you know?
<jo_muse> I know bunches of Asians in the biz. My staff is about 30% Asian
<moderator> question from jdavis: I like your comments about focusing on lifestyle and culture, instead of race, in targeting. Schools are not teaching this, however. What should the colleges be teaching?
<jo_muse> They should be teaching what culture is and how culture is being influenced by people of color all over the world.
<jo_muse> Everyone is a person of color in my book.
<jo_muse> their color is the way they hold culture and personality and identity
<moderator> question from ramona: You stated it should not make a difference, often times it does (for nontraditional students). Is there an avenue where this type of student can seek answers of assistance with achieving their goals?
<jo_muse> I say it doesn't make a difference. So you don't need special consulting. Compete.
<jo_muse> An 80 year old copywriter doesn't care how old she is.
<moderator> question from falan313: What seems to be the future trend of the Asian ad market?
<jo_muse> The fact that so called Asians are not really interested in being classified by race. Maybe culture and lifestyle. Also Asian births are getting very blended, creating interesting possibilities.
<jo_muse> Do yall know that some Asians think they are blacks and some blacks identify with being Asian. It's called culture swapping.
<jo_muse> Forget about race. Think about where people live and the influence of culture on you if you lived in San Fran. Or Taipan. Or Brazil.
<jo_muse> Or Dallas. Or Detroit.
<moderator> question from ednajr: Would you give some examples of state of the art research being done by ad agencies today? By your agency?
<jo_muse> Yall hip to the practice of account planning?
<jo_muse> It's like research just more creative.
<jo_muse> You call and talk to people more informally and you concentrate on how creative people use the info to create ideas.
<jo_muse> Some research concentrates on data and facts. AP is about new ideas.
<jo_muse> We use AP often and its a lot more interesting.
<jo_muse> We also run a traditional research company. So we still do basic research.
<jo_muse> if you like research be an account planner. You'll make more money.
<poetic3> Do you receive complaints regarding your advertisements being considered offensive? If so, how do you handle them?
<jo_muse> Not lately. You know something I don't.
<jo_muse> We have insulted everyone. Including me.
<poetic3> No. I'm just wondering if people think the advertisements are stereotypical or do they accurately reflect the target market.
<jo_muse> As I get a little older I seem to be mellowing a little. I think insulting poeple can lead to great advertising. Be bold.
<jo_muse> You know, I don't think reflecting the market is what people want. They want to be awakened.
<jo_muse> Sometimes a bold idea can get noticed becuase it seems insulting to people. Like the old Miller Beer ads.
<moderator> question from ednajr: Describe the "cultural" composition of your agency personnel.
<jo_muse> About 25% asian. 20% black. 30% white. 25% hispanics.
<moderator> question from huntw: Through your years of experience, do you believe blacks' and whites' racial tension to be increasing or decreasing?
<jo_muse> Way down. Now we just have to fix things in the companies. I think blacks are struggling to reformulate their agenda and perhaps the nations agenda.
<jo_muse> About culture. If I looked at culure I would not give racial percentages. It's different. My numbers were racial, understand.
<jo_muse> A Chinese from south central is not like a Chinese from Shanghai.
<jo_muse> I met a chinese woman once who was blacker than me.
<moderator> question from ednajr: How often is ad research done on black college campuses? Seems like a great opportunity for "cultural learning" exists there.
<jo_muse> Very little to my knowledge. I'd love to do groups there. Where are you? Wanna help me?
<jo_muse> What about the black agenda stuff. Did you see the Tavis Smiley deal this weekend on c- span?
<jo_muse> We need deep thinkers like yall. Love to do a black agenda forum on a black campus. Anyone know of any?
<moderator> question from ednajr: What can we do to get you to come to North Carolina A&T State University (an HBCU in Greensboro) and talk with students about cultural diversity issues in advertising?
<jo_muse> Do you have an advertising degree program? I go to HBCU's all the time. I'm involved in the Honda Campus All Star challenge, is it on you campus?
<jo_muse> Just invite me. And have it offficial.
<moderator> question from falan313: Is there any ad that is very successful and done by minorities?
<jo_muse> The new stuff for the Ford Focus, done by UniWorld in NYC. I think it's very good.
<jo_muse> What did you think of Spike Lee's Show Me Something?
<moderator> question from huntw: What advertising do you find harder to reach, Asian or Hispanic audience?
<jo_muse> Blacks speak english more fluently and watch lots of tv and listen to radio,
<jo_muse> I'm not saying reaching asian is tough, just the media choices are smaller and complicated.
<moderator> question from jdavis: re falan313's question: There are a LOT of successful ads done by minorities. I find it distressing that young people don't know this part of our history. Does your agency make an effort to preserve or archive its work? I know this is hard, because it "belongs" to the client
<jo_muse> blacks also are sophisticated consumers.
<jo_muse> Well, I'm finishing a book on multicultural marketing what will showcase our work,
<jo_muse> It's called the Shaman Chronicles. Book One. The 7 senses of multicultural marketing.
<jo_muse> I'm self publishing for now. National launch Sept 1.
<jo_muse> I think its the first of it kind.
<moderator> Thank you all for joing us. A full transcript of this discussion will be posted. Join us Feb. 21 at 4p.m. Eastern for a discussion on Gender Portrayals

 

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