Updated: Nov 17, 2020
Many brands are have made Black Lives Matter statements, but few have actually contributed to change. As systematic racism remains a vital topic more and more brands are realising that silence is unacceptable, and anti-racist statements must be made, but some struggle with the best way to support the movement. If you're one such brand here are 3 ways your brand can support the Black Lives Matter movement #BLM
Black Lives Matter protests were held across the globe after the death of George Floyd and many other black individuals. Companies like Ben & Jerry's have shown their support on social media, flooding Instagram with blackout squares and Twitter with antiracism messaging in an effort to show solidarity with protesters and others made donations to support the Black Lives Matter movement or related human rights associations.
However if your business plans to align itself with BLM, it's imperative you do this correctly. Ensuring your support is underpinned with concrete action to help further the movement while also addressing barriers faced by Black employees within the workplaces. Here's how to do that.
Make sure your statements are clear and bold and are explicit on how your brand supports the movement. Ben & Jerry’s stand out for their clear and bold stance on the matter
Their social media post states: “What happened to George Floyd was not the result of a bad apple; it was the predictable consequence of a racist and prejudiced system and culture that has treated Black bodies as the enemy from the beginning.”
Ben and Jerry's have long been champions of various social causes, from equal marriage to climate activism, and called for 4 concrete actions including demanding the Department of Justice reinvigorate its Civil Rights Division and Trump to disavow white supremacist and nationalist groups, which lead to the post going viral.
MAKE MEANINGFUL STATEMENTS
Avoid "performative solidarity" and ensure your brand is not just speaking out only to attract consumers and don't be another brand scrabbling for Black content without any real angle. Take a thoughtful approach as LEGO did when it pledged that that it would donate $4 million to “organizations dedicated to supporting black children and educating all children about racial equality”. This is a big statement from Lego, given their influence in children’s education and entertainment and reforming education systems will go hand in hand with law enforcement.
MAKE CHANGES IN YOUR BUSINESS
As important as it is for brands to donate and support the movement it is also recommended that brands conduct internal audits to ensure Black employees are supported, paid fair wages, and represented in leadership positions.
A 2019 report by the Center for Talent Innovation found that only 0.8 percent of CEOs and 3.2 percent of senior executives across Fortune 500 companies are Black. The report also found that Black employees are more likely to face microaggressions and racial prejudice in the workplace, as compared with employees of other races.
The question is – how will your brand support the movement going forward?
Supporting the Black Lives Matter movement is not about filling a diversity quota, it's about creating an environment where everyone feels safe to innovate and Pretty Vicious Marketing is in support all the businesses who wish to make their stance on the Movement clear.
Until next time...