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‘Dad’s Precious Cargo’ Hyundai Recognizes The Value of The Black Consumer


The buying power of African Americans rose to $1.6 trillion, or 9% of the nation's total buying power in 2020, a record number that only continues to grow. From industry to industry, the Black consumer’s buying power shows that we pay attention, and we should also be thought of and see a reflection of ourselves in how companies market their products to us.


Auto industry sales reached a 30-year low since Covid-19 caused most of the world to shut down. In recent months sales jumped back to $15 million, a 7% increase from 2020. Now, auto companies are finding new innovative ways to reach consumers. For Hyundai, that means putting forth the effort to bring in the African American community by producing new stylish inventory and showing an authentic reflection of us on screens.

Enlisting its minority and female-owned multicultural agency of record, Culture Brands, Hyundai continues its successful “OKAY Hyundai” marketing theme, which was first launched in Fall 2021. The 54-year-old company’s latest marketing strategy is designed to strengthen the connection between Hyundai and the African American community through the embedding of cultural references and nuances in the creative messaging.


Hyundai’s newest “Dad’s Precious Cargo” campaign to promote the new 2023 Palisade SUV was produced to showcase the special bond and deep connection within the Black father-daughter dynamic. Highlighting the brand’s flagship SUV, new convenience and driver assistance technologies combine to deliver the most intelligent eight-passenger SUV which takes style and substance to the next level.

“Nothing says ‘I’ve got your back like a father’s presence – especially when it comes to chauffeuring his daughter and her friends to a highly anticipated dance that will be talked about for years to come,” said Angela Zepeda, CMO, Hyundai Motor America. “In this instance, the enhanced 2023 Palisade, with its third-row intercom and Wi-Fi-hotspot, coupled with its spaciousness and style, makes it the perfect vehicle for all memorable occasions,” she explained.

Erik Thomas

With the new campaign, Hyundai continues to be a leader in the African American community, from where the products are made to who is doing the selling. “We actually have the highest percentage of African American dealers of any automaker in the U.S.,” Erik Thomas, senior group manager of experiential and multicultural marketing at Hyundai, says regarding the brand’s push for diversity on all fronts. “Fifty percent of our products are manufactured in Alabama. To have an authentic conversation on a national level, and put money behind that with the notion that there will be returns based on those who knew our products, is fantastic.”


While discussing the new 2023 Palisade, Thomas notes that Hyundai would have been able to sell its flagship SUV without putting much money behind marketing. But it is the (campaign) messaging that matters in this case. “It’s more of a heartfelt moment,” Thomas adds. “What it did was place beautiful, relatable, Black and brown young ladies and a father in a vehicle where maybe they haven't been able to see themselves … and I think that's so important.”



For Hyundai, they are “aiming to take their latest campaign’s story and make sure they bring everyone along – Hispanic, African American, Asian, as well as general market.” The long-lasting company story has always been to be a leader in all areas while providing mobility solutions and product options for consumers’ lifestyle needs.


Check out the full interview.



Photo Credits: Courtesy of Hyundai


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