If your marketing and advertising plans involve targeting New Yorkers, be sure to take into account how the state’s multicultural and immigrant demographics are rapidly changing. You’d be surprised. Here are 10 important facts about immigrants and people of color in the state that give insights into their economic, cultural, and purchasing power.
1. New York’s foreign-born population is growing quickly. During the decade of 2000-10, New York’s foreign-born community grew by 11.3 percent. By the end of the decade, New York had the nation’s third-highest percentage of “newly arrived foreign-born,” defined as those who came to the United States within the previous five years, and 10 percent of all newly arrived foreign-born residents in the nation. More likely than not, reaching these communities will benefit from in-language, grassroots marketing and community events.
2. The Latino community constitutes an increasing share of the state’s population. The Latino share of New York’s population grew from 12.3 percent in 1990, to 15.1 percent in 2000, to 17.7 percent in 2010. That’s over 3.4 million people, roughly equivalent to the entire island of Puerto Rico, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. While Latinos come from a wide range of countries, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic lead the way in New York, so consider leveraging cultural traits that span both nationalities, such as music and food.
3. Children of color make up a substantial portion of New York’s youth population. Forty percent of New York’s child population are children of color, and 86 percent of children with immigrant parents were considered “English proficient” as of 2009, according to data from the Urban Institute. Consider children’s influence on purchasing decisions and language proficiency, especially when marketing items like toys and food, where children carry a loud voice.
4. There are 1.6 million eligible Latino voters in New York with many more in the pipeline. This makes New York home to the fourth-largest Hispanic eligible-voter population nationally. That number should continue on the rise given the high levels of Latinos eligible for naturalizations (According to the Department of Homeland Security). President Obama and Mitt Romney have both taken note, announcing a wide range of campaign initiatives targeting Latinos nationally. State-based electoral candidates should take note.
5. Fifty-two percent of immigrants (or 2.2 million people) in New York were naturalized U.S. citizens in 2010—meaning that they are eligible to vote. See #5, above. Enough said.
6. Immigrants are a significant part of New York’s workforce. Immigrants comprised 27.3 percent of the state’s workforce in 2010 (or 2.7 million workers), according to the U.S. Census Bureau. As this number increases, so will their purchasing power (and your brand’s plans to capture a share of it).
7. People of color and immigrants contribute significantly to the state’s economic well-being. In 2009 New York City’s 69,000 immigrant small-business owners made up 48 percent of all small-business owners in the city, according to the U.S Census Bureau. This is an excellent opportunity for regional and even national banks looking to grow their SBA business, as well as companies offering mid- to small- business services like printing, IT, and HR management.
8. New York has one of the largest Hispanic economic markets in the country. The state has some of the largest Hispanic consumer markets at $81 billion, according to the Selig Center for Economic Growth. For some perspective, consider that this dollar amount is approximately equivalent to the 72nd largest GDP in the world, according to the IMF… But it’s just Hispanics, just in NY.
9. Removing unauthorized immigrants from the state could hurt the economy. If all illegal immigrants were removed from New York, the state would lose $29 billion in economic activity, even accountingfor adequate market adjustment time, according to a Perryman Group report. While this is not the only argument to consider regarding immigration reform, it certainly is an important one. Depending on your brand’s focus and stance, an opportunity to build allegiance with (or distance yourself from) the sector.
10. Immigrants pay a significant amount of state and local taxes in New York. In 2010 New York was ranked fourth in the country in terms of tax revenue collected from households headed by illegal immigrants, with a total of $662,439,624 to the state in taxes. In addition to supporting purchasing power, this number indicates a distinct opportunity for financial services companies to address this hard working, tax-paying, and often ignored market (from a marketing perspective).