News

Riding America’s Asian Wave

5/09/2011 12:01 AM Eastern

Our worldview is changing. Not too
long ago, Asia was a distant and relatively unknown
continent — to most Americans, at least. However, our
insatiable appetite for goods and services has fueled
an Asian renaissance, and not just across
the Pacific.

Asia is in the headlines and it’s a part of just
about every product we use. Even Chipotle
Mexican Grill is joining the Asian wave with
a new Asian restaurant chain. Within our
own borders, the Asian-American influence
is rocketing to the forefront. Amazingly, the
fastest growing demographic in Texas, California
and New York is not Hispanic — it is Asian.

Industrious, prosperous and freedom-loving,
Asian-Americans/Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) truly
represent the spirit of our founding fathers, and
they are reaping the rewards. AAPIs are the besteducated
and highest-income group in the United
States — by a large margin. In 2009, the median AAPI
household income was $65,469, compared with $38,039 for
the median Hispanic household and $32,584 for the median
African American household. Astonishingly, even with these
statistics, AAPIs lack attention from U.S. media companies.

Madison Avenue advertising agencies have recently
embraced this highly important demographic using English.
Why English? Because according to the U.S. Census,
80 percent of AAPIs speak English well. So the perceived
language barrier does not exist, nor has it for a long time.
The bridge to the AAPI market is built with English.

Advertisers see the importance of AAPIs, who have
the highest penetration of HD, broadband and mobile devices,
but where are the English-language multiplatform
offerings? There are a plethora of Hispanic channels, with
more promised, but what about English content
targeted to Asians?

According to a Ronin Group study for cable
network AZN, 87% of AAPIs are dissatisfied
with how U.S. television portrays Asians, in respect
to both quantity and quality. To address
this need, a good place to start will be with music
and sports — two things which transcend
both language and cultures. [Editor’s note: The
author’s One World Sports network holds the
U.S. rights to several Asian sports properties.]

American media companies should follow
Madison Avenue’s bravery and leadership,
and make AAPIs a high priority. They
will be amply rewarded now and for years to
come. The AAPI population is expected to grow to 23 million
by 2020, and possibly expand to 20% of the total U.S.
population by 2050. Additionally, AAPIs have a strong
sense of brand loyalty and will spread the word in their
communities.

Come on media companies! Build a bridge and forge a
long lasting bond with a fantastic group of Americans.


John Preston Bornman III is president of One Media Corp.,
parent company to the One World Sports, OneSportsPLUS.com and America One networks.
September