Scholarly research shows that Asian American consumers accept the “model minority” advertising stereotype about themselves. In a study conducted last year, Yoo, the University of Texas researcher, showed panels of Asian Americans two sets of mock ads for mobile phones, the first featuring Caucasian models and the second with Asian models. Then, she repeated the experiment with ads for a “non-tech” product, cologne, alternating ads with Caucasian and Asian models.
Result: Asian American consumers were more favorably disposed toward the tech products when they were endorsed by the Asian models. They also liked the non-tech products more when they were endorsed by Caucasian models.
Yoo theorizes that this is a reflection of the “match up” theory: Asian American panelists have bought into the same cues and stereotypes as other Americans thanks to years of cultural exposure.