South Asians are the Most Affluent Consumer Group in the Country!


Tom Marsillo
Sr. VP, Zee TV
November 2011

In many respects, the South Asian market in the U.S. is a marketer’s dream.    After all, what marketer wouldn’t want to reach a more educated consumer with higher income and larger families that owns a home and new cars; all without a major re-deployment of marketing dollars?

That marketer’s dream is today’s U.S. South Asian market! Here’s why:

  • South Asians’ median household income is a staggering 76% higher than the national average!
  • One in every nine Indians in the U.S. is a millionaire, comprising 10% of all U.S. millionaires!i
  • South Asian households are 29% larger than the national average.
  • They are better educated than the national average as almost 67% of all Indians have a bachelor’s or higher degree compared to 28% nationally. Also, almost 40% of all Indians in the United States have a master’s, doctorate or other professional degree, which is five times the national average. iii
  • Most South Asians are employed in professional fields. They are engineers and medical doctors, professors and entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and CEO’s.

South Asians generally over-index the U.S. National average in just about every meaningful consumer category including Automotive, Banking and Financial Investments, Travel, Telecommunications, Technology and Home Ownership.

Whereas most ethnic groups in the country are pursuing parity with the General Market, South Asians have surpassed that standard by a wide margin.

That is why blue chip mainstream brands like State Farm, Wells Fargo, AT&T, Met Life, Lufthansa, HSBC, Infiniti and Novartis have all seen the value in investing in the South Asian consumer.

Beyond the demographic story, the South Asian segment is also the fastest growing group in the country.  The South Asian population in the U.S is projected to have doubled over the last 10 years, according to the U.S. Census surpassing the three million mark

Add to these facts that this affluent consumer group can be reached without making an investment in producing creative since the overwhelming majority (93.6%) speaks English.ii

Still, most mainstream brands in the U.S. are not speaking to this affluent, elite consumer group.

Perhaps it’s the perception that South Asians are being reached through their General Market media campaigns? This is an absolute misconception since an overwhelming majority of South Asians in the U.S. are not watching the largest mainstream networks.iv South Asians prefer culturally relevant entertainment that caters to their priorities and sensitivities.

Zee TV has been the undisputed leader in the South Asian entertainment space since it’s’ inception in 1998. Zee TV is a Nielsen and Rentrak measured South Asian Television Network that enjoys the same dominance amongst their audience as Univision does in the Hispanic market.

According to Rentrak, Zee programming dominates the South Asian TV landscape. In February 2011, 99 of the top 100 S.A. telecasts were all on Zee TV! v

Beyond top rated shows, Zee is also an active participant in the South Asian community across the country, sponsoring many cultural and entertainment events that are important to their audience.

An investment in Zee TV combined with Zee’s extensive off air marketing support is the key to connecting with America’s most affluent consumer group!


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