For the first time ever, Hyundai is enlisting the help of a Black-owned marketing agency to expand the brand.
According to an exclusive from AdAge, Hyundai Motor America has chosen to hire Culture Brands — founded by 15-year advertising veteran Eunique Jones Gibson — as its African American marketing agency of record in an effort to commit to and reach more Black buyers.
“At Hyundai, our vision is progress for humanity, and that includes making our marketing more inclusive and representative,” Angela Zepeda — CMO of Hyundai Motor America — said in a statement. “We selected Culture Brands for its expertise in reaching multicultural communities in culturally relevant ways. We can’t wait to get started and be more strategic, targeted and authentic in how we communicate with African American consumers.”
According to AdAge, the Maryland-based agency has claimed the account with Hyundai under a multi-year contract following a competitive request for proposal (RFP) process. Under this account, the agency will provide strategic marketing solutions that will effectively reach Black consumers.
“Diversity and inclusion, and focusing on our diverse audiences, has been really part of the new fabric of Hyundai,” Zepeda tells AdAge.
She claims that the automaker searched for an agency “not only developing creative and marketing solutions for the African American target segment, but an agency that really knew about building culture.”
Culture Brands — which currently houses culture-shifting entities such as Because Of Them We Can®, CultureTags® and Dream Village® — is known for developing innovative content that both refutes stereotypes in Black communities and encourages its audiences to celebrate unsung Black figures and our unwritten history year-round.
“At Culture Brands, we use our media platforms, consumer brands and partnerships to generate culturally relevant and affirming campaigns and content; we aren’t just marketers, we are culture shapers and shifters,” Culture Brands CEO and Chief Creative Officer Jones Gibson shared in a statement. “We are honored that Hyundai has chosen Culture Brands as its collaborative partner and look forward to working with them to create and execute campaigns that resonate with the African American audience.”
Culture Brands was formed by Jones Gibson back in 2017 with the intention to own and operate an agency that prioritized the needs of Black communities and engaged with them organically.
According to an interview with Jones Gibson, she revealed that “brands and organizations would come to us and would ask us to create culturally relevant content or sponsor the content we were creating.”
Since launching, the agency has work with several brand clients including American Family Insurance and Warner Bros., for which it created ads for the 2019 film, “Just Mercy.”
With Hyundai, Culture Brands will “develop African American marketing strategies, create new vehicle campaigns, provide experiential and social media strategy, and consult on media buying decisions,” a press release reports.
The two companies plan to kick off its new contract with the launch of the all-new 2022 Tucson while also supporting future model and IONIQ sub-brand launches.