As a Linkedin Certified Marketing Insider, one of the perks so far was a recent webinar on how businesses think about inclusivity when it comes to marketing. It left each and every one of us with things to think about when it comes to marketing, for me I felt it was worthy of a blog post as it’s an important topic that doesn’t always make its presence felt amongst those of us working with small to medium-sized business who won’t have the resources of say a multi-national who might be in the position to dedicate time and or people to it.
Marketing that embraces diversity and inclusion transcends differences, enabling brands to connect with every customer.
By amplifying messages that promote inclusion, marketing has the power to transform individuals, communities, and society at scale.Pooja Dhanothia, Director, APAC Enterprise Solutions, Linkedin Marketing Solutions
Over the course of two hours a number of speakers covered a range of topics and shared some insights that really every business needs to be aware of when it comes to their marketing.
We spend a lot of time as marketers ensuring that we’re clear on who our ideal customer is and that our message will resonate with them. We look at the imagery we use, the copy on our website, and the captions on our social media and ensure that our objectives are outlined. We might have a playbook or strategy which covers brand voice, we might even have a guide to the music that’s acceptable on our social media or the emojis that we’re happy to use as a brand.
And all of that would be correct but we’re missing something if we stop at getting those foundations right as we need to think about whether we’re engaging in ‘Inclusive Marketing’ i.e. marketing that looks at those who fall outside of the ideal target characteristic.
In recent years businesses have taken an active stance on inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility and these are steps forward that are welcome across the board. However, in many businesses this inclusion doesn’t necessarily carry through to marketing campaigns or messaging.
To fully engage in inclusive marketing you would look at those who may find themselves excluded from mainstream conversations. You might create content for example that is more representative of the more diverse populations we find ourselves with in today’s world. With that, we might review the language we’re using, considering if we need to re-phrase or incorporate messaging that would be more appealing to others that haven’t always been part of that ideal customer.
Inclusive marketing though goes further than adjusting to changing demographics, it’s also about ensuring we’ve got captions on videos, fonts that aren’t a challenge to understand, tags on social media posts or websites that are accessible to everybody, or downloadable resource that allows for the opportunity for more users to feel included within your marketing.
Whilst we won’t always have the resources or requirements to create content in multiple languages, if there are keywords you use for example or a tagline, do a little research to ensure it’s not offensive or mis-leading to segments of your target audience. One high-profile incidence of this was when Pepsi inadvertently suggested they could bring your ancestors back from the dead! Read the details here.
On some platforms where influencers are frequently used to connect with audiences, it may mean that instead of working with just one influencer who has generated an audience of your typical ideal customers, that you look past that and try to build a connection with others who might be a secondary group who wouldn’t ordinarily resonate with the content you’re building for your regular ideal audience.
Inclusive marketing isn’t first and foremost about finding those niche markets that might bring you additional customers, it’s about delivering a message that’s representative of those who might be your audience in today’s world and, if it brings in additional revenue consider it a bonus as opposed to looking for it as goal in the first place.
As businesses continue to grow and expand into the global marketplaces of today’s world, it’s important for them to keep in mind the importance of being mindful when it comes to creating messages around inclusion and diversity through inclusive marketing tactics like these mentioned above – not only will it help establish trust between your brand and potential customers but also help foster a sense of belonging within existing customer bases too!
The best part? Not only does this benefit everyone involved but it can also helps drive higher ROI for your business too.
If you’d like support in implementing a more inclusive Marketing Strategy, we can help you here at The Marketing Shop. Schedule a call at this link or pop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to advise on how we can assist you.
Debbie Ringwood is a Marketing Specialist with over 20 years of experience in B2B and B2C Marketing. She is a Graduate of the Marketing Institute of Ireland and the Digital Marketing Institute. She is a Linkedin Certified Marketing Insider, META Certified Community Manager, and Canva Champion.
Debbie supports, coaches, and trains businesses in Marketing, Social Media, Canva & WordPress along with her team, working with businesses at different stages of their journey.