Responding to General Motors' increasingly aggressive efforts to woo multicultural customers, GM Planworks has hired Traci Dinkins, former Spike DDB associate media director, as diversity group director, a new post.
Dinkins, who left the Omnicom Group multicultural agency in May and joined Planworks last week, will run the Publicis Groupe shop's Diversity Center of Expertise, whose staff of eight coordinates media plans with GM's in-house Diversity & Growth Markets group.
Dennis Donlin, president of GM Planworks, which handles General Motors' $2.9 billion media planning business, said Dinkins' hire is a result of GM's need for "dedicated resources" to reach a diverse marketplace.
"We're looking at multiculturalism holistically," he said. "As a business opportunity, it will work on a directed media level, but also as a part of and influence on general media spending."
At Spike DDB for three years, Dinkins managed diversity marketing for Pepsi, State Farm, Jaguar and the New York McDonald's franchise group. The opportunity to work for the second-largest advertiser in the world was what led the lifelong New Yorker to the Motor City.
"Marketers are still figuring out how to approach minority populations," she said. "And the attraction of GM is that [it has] the dollar resources to do it on a grand scale."
GM spent $140 million on multicultural marketing in 2002 and has said it plans to nearly double that by 2004. In the pursuit of Latinos alone, GM boosted its media spending 212 percent to more than $50 million from 2000 to 2002, according to Hispanic Business. Ford and DaimlerChrysler spent $15 million and $10 million, respectively.