A Diverse Perspective: Why You Should Hire Black Talent

Content by Breonna Redd

As a Black woman working in marketing, I’m not new to being one of few — or even the only — who looks like me in a room. In fact, a part of me has accepted it as the status quo. So learning about Big’s partnership with Building Leaders and Creators (BLAC) — an internship program catering towards young Black advertisers — sparked my interest.

I have always been passionate about helping my community, and with eight years of industry experience, I am well aware of the scarcity of people of color in this space. It didn’t surprise me when I heard that Black marketers make up less than 8% of our industry workforce, and I am proud to be a part of an organization making efforts to change that.

With recent pushes towards diversity and inclusion, brands are openly working towards creating more inclusive advertisements. However, studies show that 70% of Black consumers feel that those brands haven’t done their research. I agree.

It’s not enough to simply choose Black talent and check off a box. Businesses and organizations need Black teammates in the room making decisions, providing insight and perspective that only they can.

As marketers, we understand the importance of research but the reality is that there is certain information we aren’t privy to, no matter how much we explore. We may have the data and the numbers but unless we speak to someone inside of a community, we know very little about their unique experiences. And while focus groups or surveys can help us with this, hiring diverse talent goes far beyond helping create successful campaigns.

Despite representing only 12.1% of the nation’s population, Black consumers are responsible for the bulk of its spending. Our dollars matter, and having Black talent on your team can help avoid potentially harmful decisions that may affect your business or your client’s ROI.

We can also help advocate for an array of social issues. Of course, this does not replace the need for representation from other communities, but our daily experiences often make us sensitive toward cultures outside of our own.

Black consumers are not alone in their sentiments toward the advertising industry. In fact, 60% of consumers from diverse communities claim to feel “invisible or underrepresented” in ads. At a time where there is an emphasis on authenticity the work that organizations like Big and BLAC are doing is necessary and, in my opinion, should be the new status quo.

Want to Talk?

Niki Lim Roden

Director of Business Development