July 1st, 2015

Diversity Tennis Marketing is Just Good Marketing

General News

Laura BowenBy Laura Bowen, USTA Florida Director of Marketing & Membership

What is diversity marketing? Is it marketing to multiple cultures? Is it being inclusive of all audiences in all of your marketing? Or, is it just good marketing?

Consider this perspective…

You have four tennis facilities where you have to grow programs:

* One is in a 55+ community, where residents do not work and have a lot of free time and competing activities.
* One is in a vibrant downtown full of young professionals who work long hours and want something fun and easy.
* One is in a Hispanic community filled with multiple-generation families who want to do things together.
* One is in a poor neighborhood with limited access to financial and other resources.

Would you be able to market these facilities the same way? Would you be able to create a single marketing program that would fit them all?

The answer is quite simply, “No.”

Trying to be all things to everyone usually means you are nothing to anyone. Good marketing has always been about some very basic things:

hispanic familyIdentify your audience.

Who are you are trying to reach and where are they? Just because Millennials are a huge demographic doesn’t mean they should be the focus everywhere. Florida has huge populations of retirees, Millennials and Hispanic consumers. It makes sense for us to focus on these audiences, but we have to do that strategically in the areas where they live.


Understand their needs.

What does the audience need from you? There are lots of ways to get this information. My favorite is partnering with other organizations in those communities. For example, when we started our Hispanic Outreach effort, “Tenis Para Todos,” we met with Hispanic organizations and media outlets in Florida. We asked for their open advice, and they were not shy. Now, we are working with college students and fraternities to get their guidance on what Millennials want and need. Listening to the consumer has helped us create pilot programs that met needs of very different audiences.

Relate to them.

When you communicate with your audience, are you doing it in a way that resonates? Just because someone can understand you, doesn’t mean they can relate to you. It’s all about comfort. When we communicate with target audiences, we use staff who represent those audiences to create and review those communications. This makes us relatable and builds trust and comfort with consumers.

So while marketing to diverse populations may seem difficult, it really is just good marketing.

For more marketing tips, visit our online community at MyUSTAFlorida.com.