Impact investing has emerged as a powerful tool for directing private capital toward social and environmental causes while generating financial returns for investors. This approach is particularly relevant for black and brown entrepreneurs who often face systemic barriers that limit their access to capital and resources. Many of these entrepreneurs are creating businesses that address social and environmental challenges faced by their communities, such as access to affordable housing, healthcare, and education. However, they often struggle to secure the funding they need to grow and scale their businesses.
Despite the data documenting the opportunity gap for diverse founders compared to their White counterparts, there is a persistent narrative that suggests no correlation between race and ethnicity and business enablement. Yet, their funding journey varies significantly and getting people to buy into social impact as a business strategy isn't easy.
In this episode of The New Mainstream podcast, Jessica Salinas, Chief Investment Officer at New Media Ventures, discusses how impact investing can empower diverse entrepreneurs and contribute to a more just, equitable, and sustainable society.
The difference between organizations that implement diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives well and those that stumble is intentionality. Two years after the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, people of color are still waiting to see systemic change economically, politically and socially.
Companies and brands that employ millions of workers can make a tremendous impact here if that influence is wielded to take a stance on social justice issues, level the playing field for black and brown workers, and increase representation in marketing and advertising.
That work begins with the talent pipeline. Organizations that intentionally fill the pipeline with diverse candidates are more likely to hire employees with diverse backgrounds. That diversity impacts culture, innovation, creativity and, ultimately, business outcomes.
For marketers, when hiring, it’s important to remember that what’s happening inside the organization often shows up on the outside. Without cultural competence and representation, inclusive marketing will be difficult to achieve. Simply put, failing to diversify your talent pipeline is why your marketing is missing the mark.
In this episode of The New Mainstream podcast, Carole Smith, Marketing Director and Executive Sponsor of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council at Aquent, discusses the role of diversity in talent acquisition and how it improves business outcomes.
In 1978, former President Jimmy Carter legalized home brewing beer giving rise to what we now know as craft beer. There are currently over 9,000 craft breweries in the U.S. challenging legacy beer brands for market share and consumer mindshare. As beer has evolved, brand offerings have expanded to include non-alcoholic beers and non-beer products like hard seltzers. Beer drinkers have evolved as well. Alcohol consumption has soared, particularly among women ages 21-25 for the first time in history.
Yet, outside of oversexualized ads, the beer industry has largely ignored women in advertising and the c-suite despite the growing number of female founders of craft breweries like Golden Road Brewing and Jack A Lope Brewing Company. Bad behavior and gender disparities are not uncommon in the beer industry. Last year, a brave female founder took to social media to call out sexist and abusive behavior toward women in the industry, leading to resignations, firings, and a new perspective on women's contributions.
People want easy solves. It’s not uncommon for companies and brands to retain the services of an expert in multicultural marketing or diversity and inclusion to be told what to do rather than coming to the table with what they want to do. You have to set the intention. While you may not know how to get there, doing the soul searching needed to uncover the vulnerabilities within your organization is a step in the right direction toward developing a more inclusive culture that impacts how you work, how you hire, and how you market.
Ironically, marketers turn to market research to give them insight into specific audiences. But the challenge within the research industry is its lack of diversity, and it can have a real impact on results. When there is a lack of representation when developing sample frames, for example, the questionnaires lack objectivity. And when you only pull in researchers of color when you want to run a multicultural campaign, your general market campaigns lack that perspective.
Researchers of color are first and foremost researchers and should be considered team members, not just leads on special projects or multicultural checkpoints. The industry needs more people of color to fill the vacancies on these teams. Essential to attracting diverse talent is an inclusive recruiting strategy.
Awareness of market research careers should be raised on the campuses of historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and jobs posted on inclusive job boards like Mimconnect. When candidates are hired, they must see themselves growing at the company. If there isn’t representation at the top in key leadership positions, it sends the wrong message.
In this episode of The New Mainstream podcast, Whitney Dunlap Fowler, founder, A Touch of Whit and Insights In Color and Shazia Ginai, CEO, Neuro-Insight and board chair, Colour of Research (CORe), share their experiences in the market research industry, and how intentionality is key to driving diversity.
Supplier diversity programs were developed to level the playing field for diverse suppliers, including minority, women, LGBTQ, disabled, and veteran-owned businesses. By connecting entrepreneurs to economic opportunity, ideally, organizations can harness the power of the marketplace to drive social impact.
However, supplier diversity often falls short on the data. It’s widely known that diverse suppliers are not given the opportunities to contract for public sector work at the rate of their non-minority and male counterparts despite the explosive growth of entrepreneurship among minority and women-owned firms. (more…)
Social media has proven time and again the need for brands to be inclusive. Last year, with less in-person shopping due to the pandemic, e-commerce soared. E-commerce sales made up 18% of all global retail sales in 2020, and they're expected to reach 21.8% in 2024. Social media is playing an important role in the growth of e-commerce as retailers employ omnichannel strategies to reach consumers. As such, consumers have become acutely aware of the brands that consider their environmental and human impacts. (more…)
People who have been on a Zoom call with me can undoubtedly tell that video games greatly impact my life. Having been an avid gamer since the Atari 2600 days, I have seen the gaming world evolve over the years. According to IDC Data, what was once thought of as a kid-friendly pass time has matured, posting revenue that rivals the movie industry and North American sports combined with a whopping $180 billion in global sales in 2020. (more…)