Marketers can play a huge role in transforming the world by educating the market, sharing the right message, and moreover, helping organizations to create a long-lasting inclusive mindset and to promote inclusive behavior, while messaging with representativeness and authenticity.
We’re presently living in a world where most people don’t show brand loyalty at all. More than 80% of the McKinsey Institute for Black Economic Mobility survey respondents said they were willing to switch brands if another better represents themselves.
Yet, the survey also said that black consumers are willing to pay up to 20% more for the right products and services that meet their needs.
As market data is showing us, companies who take it seriously, and with a real approach, are more likely to have an above average profitability, attract and retain customers and employees, and at the same time improve the state of the world.
Let’s see how you bring that thought into your brand with responsibility and action (and not only marketing about it), with some good real-world examples of companies that are already doing that.
Diversity to brands
The first thing brands should consider when including diversity in their guidelines, is that a brand represents what the company is in terms of beliefs, behaviors, vision, characteristics – like a person’s personality and life history.
So, as it happens with a person, if you try to advertise something you are not or that you don’t believe, you’ll be on the way to failure.
Before including diversity in your brand, start including it in your business, to employees conversations, trainings, and understand diversity inside your culture.
Only then, you can move to the next step of working with diversity to your brand and marketing – which is amazing, and I totally encourage you to do so, don’t get me wrong. Implementing diversity into your brand and business will be great for your employees experience, business revenue, and of course, to build a better world. According to the McKinsey analysis, companies that have cultural and ethnic minorities in their teams are 36% more likely to experience industry-leading profitability.
Inspiring yourself with diversity initiatives in the world of ads
Recently, Publicis Media announced the launch of a marketplace to increase representativeness, by providing their clients with the opportunity to access a vetted inventory from publishers who serve underrepresented communities, focused on increasing diverse audience reach.
Named ‘Diverse and Inclusive Media Exchange’ (DIME), the marketplace will be exclusive to Publicis clients, and was intended to deliver a more inclusive content, according to Publicis Media U.K. Chief Executive Officer Sue Frogley.
Taking one of the most expensive advertising slots for inspiration, Super Bowl ads have been delighting audiences in the past years with diverse castings and real life narratives.
According to Jon Evans, Chief Marketing Officer at System1, they found three primary ways to employ diversity as a strategy, although it’s important to understand there are many consequences and points of analysis of using each, that will differ from brand to brand, and between campaigns:
- Multiple scenes with a range of people
- Expose an issue that affects a minority
- Using diverse castings even when it’s not required, in a less explicit way
Marketing and content agencies, as it happens at Rock Content, have an even bigger potential for impact. Because they handle multiple client’s communication and strategy, they have the power to bring diversity to life in campaigns, and to educate multiple clients in diverse industries about the topic, and how people want to feel represented by the media.
Each client represents an opportunity for education and how fundamental it is for diversity in any business. Next time, hopefully the client is the one asking you that in the brief, not the opposite.
How to start with diversity
Start with a plan, that’s what I always say. Also, start with what you can do today. It might not be much, but it’s something, and something is better than nothing. Don’t seek for the complex or bold, remember you just want to start getting things done:
- Share the idea with a small group of people, brainstorm the topic
- Get the leadership onboard with you
- Make a short survey to understand how your company is doing with diversity so far, and what your internal target would like to see being done, what are the opportunities for improvement?
- Use both to create a vision of success for this project
- List some of the first steps to get there, share with the same group, review, and start
Wrap Up: this is the smart and right thing to do
Marketers can benefit from learning how to develop a diversity and inclusion strategy. It improves the state of the world, while improving tangible business results for companies.
- Start by looking internally, make it a real commitment to include it in your business values and culture, as this is crucial to have coherent communication when sharing outside the company;
- Then, expanding it to the products and services, and ensuring they are accessible to everyone and with diverse representation, especially when we are talking about the influence and scalable impact agencies, and marketing companies have to shape the messaging.
The key, essentially, is to start by getting things done and enjoy this road full of learning and developments.
Read here to find out more about Rock Content’s commitment to diversity and impact globally.
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