Finding the right audiences for your message is like peeling the layers of the onion.

Yvonne Santalucia,

Senior Multicultural Health Advisor, NSW Health

Build on the learnings of others

Search for any similar campaigns that have been run for your target audience. Find out what went well and the areas that can be improved.

Head to the Census

The data collected in the Census will be your first step to identifying language groups of importance
and their location. For example, 1 in 3 Vietnamese speakers in NSW live in three postcodes, but this is just the beginning. Dig deeper and correlate other data and insights to peel back the layers and get a better understanding.

Don’t forget that the Census is done every five years and demographics such as new arrivals may change significantly in between reports.

Delve into the data you have in your organisation

Work with different areas within your organisation to discover the data you already have available. It may
be useful to put a message on your internal channels about the type of information you are looking for. While some information may not be current, it is relevant to look at historical data to identify changes over time.

Look at what data or insights other government departments might be 
able to share

This could include demographics, services used, local issues or grant recipients. Local government will also be a rich source of data. Multicultural NSW can help connect you to the departments who may hold useful data.

Multicultural NSW can provide channels and advice to connect into communities.

Look at specific data collected outside of government

There’s a wealth of data in specific industries or sectors you want to reach. For example, unions, NGOs and reports by private companies may have excellent insights about the same customer base. Most of this data can be accessed online.

SafeWork NSW approached Multicultural NSW Language Services to translate a fact sheet into the top 10 languages spoken in NSW. The team recommended filtering Census data to include people working in the construction industry in NSW. This data showed a different mix of languages, and the resource was translated into languages that were more aligned with the construction industry.

Understand the user journey

To get to your target audience, you may need to go via the information gatekeeper. For example, in some communities younger people can take a ‘broker’ role (accessing or filtering information on behalf of others) because they have a higher level of digital or English proficiency.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, even though the AstraZeneca vaccine wasn’t recommended for people under 60 years, in some multicultural communications and media platforms, messages were targeted to younger people, who were the intermediaries for conveying information and making recommendations to older people in the community.

Ensure that every stage of the journey is easy to navigate and understand

Map out each stage of the process. Each call to action should have an accessible and inclusive pathway to close the loop.

If you link to a website or a form, make sure it is translated in-language or there is an option to call an interpreter.

Talk to your communities

Go beyond the data and statistics. Reach out to community members/groups and engage in community forums. Find out their current perceptions, cultural barriers and what is being said on the ground which could include literacy levels, impact of disadvantage, digital familiarity and lack of trust in government from past experiences. Refine your approach based on the feedback.

Multicultural NSW can provide channels and advice to connect into communities.

We communicate to people, not numbers.

Understanding the community, getting audience insight, getting community feedback –they are all key tactics to make sure your message lands effectively.

Thang Ngo, Associate Director,
Communications and Marketing, Multicultural NSW
There are many nuances within multicultural communities. To get the best outcomes, make sure you spend time clearly defining your audiences.

Thank you

This playbook represents the collective knowledge and expertise from a diverse range of people across NSW Government. They willingly shared their insights to help uplift communications to multicultural audiences; ensuring these communities are considered and included in every service and space.

We would like to acknowledge the contributions of the CALD Communications Working Group and multicultural communications agencies, including Etcom, Identity Communications and LOUD Communications Group.

Multicultural NSW is here to provide you with support and guidance every step of the way. 
If you have any questions,
 get in touch.

Page last updated: 15 May 2024 | 10:50 am