Editor’s note: Sudipti Kumar is Collage Group’s director of multicultural insights. 

The Asian American community is a growing and affluent segment of the American population, with 19 million individuals identifying as Asian or Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander. Although there are economic disparities within the segment to be mindful of, this demographic boasts the highest average income among racial and ethnic groups in the United States. And their purchasing power has significantly grown over the past decade. 

Despite their economic influence, only 43% of Asians are satisfied with how they are portrayed in advertisements, the lowest of any racial and ethnic segment. Brands and marketers are missing out on a significant opportunity by not appealing to this community.

To better connect with this diverse group, client-side researchers should explore the motivations, behaviors and outlook of the Asian American population. The largest sub-segments of Asians in America are Chinese, Indian and Filipino Americans, and Asian Americans also hail from many other countries including Korea, Japan and Vietnam. Having this knowledge of where Asian Americans come from is invaluable, but it’s only a starting point. From here, insights professionals must examine the shared values and attitudes of this important segment.

Because the Asian American segment is so diverse, there are many different languages and country of origin traditions to consider. Indeed, the term “Asian American” is relatively new and came about to bring together different groups of Asian descent under one, larger umbrella. Since then, the term Asian American is often used to collectively describe the segment. However, the term should not be used to obscure the crucial differences across religion, language and culture that characterize Asia – the world’s largest and most populous continent.

Thus, brands should seek to understand...