Advertisers and the media are tackling inclusivity in an increasingly tech-driven world. Success means tapping into the potential of Black consumers.
Marketers and advertisers have gathered on the French Riviera for this year’s Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity to hear how to be more authentic and inclusive in an increasingly tech-driven marketplace.
Bombarded by online advertising messages every day, consumers are becoming increasingly discerning when it comes to deciding what kind of content and brands to engage with.
Going beyond prices and offers, many companies are being scrutinized not only for their sustainability credentials, but also their commitment to diversity and inclusion.
‘Unused’ Black Consumers
At Cannes Lions, during a session titled ‘Harness the Black Effect: Diversity as a Game Changer for Brands’, creative minds are asked to awaken the “untapped” potential of the black consumer market.
The audience heard that Black consumers represent more than €1.6 trillion in annual purchasing power in the US alone. Yet Black audiences make up less than two percent of US advertising and marketing spending.
“In 2023, investment for dedicated black-facing campaigns is still really low and that leaves a lot of opportunity on the table,” said Brian Boles-Marshall, Divers Media Strategy & Investment Lead at American automaker General Motors (GM) in Cannes told Euronews Next.
“It’s like anything else, if you’re not speaking directly to the audience, they may feel like your message isn’t for them. So, if you want to change your brand game, if you [the consumer] Know that yes, our products are for you, you talk to them, not them.”
Boles-Marshall said that research has shown that the “Black Effect”, the influence of black consumers, influences mainstream consumer behaviors to a greater extent.
Making AI Inclusive
With the rise of content creators like generative AI (artificial intelligence), advertisers, marketers and the media are tackling inclusivity in an increasingly tech-driven environment.
This poses an additional challenge for businesses as they strive to become more diverse and representative.
“We have to evolve with technology, and we have to make sure that technology, as it evolves, is inclusive,” Boles-Marshall said. “When you talk about AI and some of these new age approaches, we want to make sure that attention is being paid to how AI is being implemented among diverse consumers”.
She continued: “We’re not trying to grab black consumers; we’re trying to leverage the power they already have. So as long as the technology follows that rule, I think we’re going to be in good shape.” Will be in shape”.
sync with consumers
According to consumers, youth ages 18-25 are paying more attention to inclusive advertising when making purchasing decisions research Done by Deloitte in 2021.
But the consulting firm highlighted that it is not enough to market inclusion or diversity alone, stressing its data shows 57 per cent of consumers are more loyal to brands that commit to addressing social inequalities in their operations. Are.
Deloitte also states that onboarding future customers involves brands that demonstrate a range of similar results, including recruitment and retention, as well as marketing products to users of varying abilities.
“Words alone don’t cut it. If you don’t pass the smell test, it’s actually going to cost you more money to improve your reputation in the market than if you followed what you said in the first place,” Boles-Marshall, GM Se, told Euronews Next.
“Consumers are smart, they’re researching things and sharing what they’ve researched with other consumers. It’s like wildfire”.
GM is undergoing its own transformation right now, setting a goal of electrifying the majority of vehicles it manufactures by 2035. The company also wants to become carbon neutral after five years. It says that a trip will be all inclusive.
“At General Motors, we have dedicated media budgets for Black consumers. We have targeted Black-owned media across consumer segments, but we have also focused on how we are delivering against all diverse segments, Boles-Marshall said.
“For us, it’s all about, we want to make sure everyone sees themselves in our products and everyone’s locking arms to drive our products into a fully electric future”.