Number of Asian immigrants surpasses Hispanics

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The decision to step up the industry’s Discover Boating campaign to appeal to a more diverse prospect base was reinforced with the announcement that Asian immigrants have surpassed Hispanics for the first time in U.S. history.

This year, Discover Boating is including more minorities in its graphics and videos than ever before, recognizing that boating’s future growth will depend on our appeal to minorities. Kudos to the Discover Boating camp for leading the way.

According to a recently published report titled “The Rise of Asian-Americans” by the Pew Research Center, Asian-Americans are now the fastest-growing racial group in the nation. U.S. Census data reveals some 430,000 Asians immigrated here in 2010. That’s 36 percent of all new immigrants compared, for example, to 370,000 or 31 percent of Hispanic origin.

It’s a potentially robust market for boat sales. The total number of Asian-Americans is at a record-high of 18.2 million, or 5.8 percent of the U.S. population, and rising. Other highlights on diversity from the census include: non-Hispanic whites (197.5 million) account for 63.3 percent of our population; Hispanics (52 million) represent 16.7 percent; and non-Hispanic blacks (38.3 million) are 12.3 percent of the population.

Notably, the census also indicated that the majority (50.4 percent) of all children born in the U.S. in the 12-month period ending July 2011 were Asian-Americans, Hispanic, African- Americans or other minorities for the first time in history. A year earlier, minority births accounted for 49.5 percent.

It’s also important to note that Asian-Americans are the best educated. Sixty-one percent of Asian immigrants have a bachelor’s degree or higher, more than double non-Asian immigrants. It’s probably no surprise, then, that they also have the highest incomes of all minority groups.

Moreover, if minorities who acknowledge being happy and satisfied are more likely to become prospective boat buyers, Asian-Americans must top the list. They indicate they are more satisfied than the general public with their lives and finances. They also place greater value on marriage, parenthood, hard work and career success, according to the Pew study. That sounds like ideal boating prospects to me.

The current Discover Boating campaign includes pictures and video with Asian-Americans as well as Hispanics and African-Americans. And materials with minorities, and so much more, are available free to all dealers.

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