The Importance of Diverse Marketing Teams in Creating Inclusive Campaigns

Diverse marketing teams can best reach a growing diverse marketplace.

As a diversity consultant, I continue to welcome guest blogs from excellent writers and researchers who offer practical insights in these areas to supplement by expertise.  Here is a thoughtful and useful blog from Sean Begg Flint of Position Digital.

Diversity is an increasingly important issue in workplaces, with many companies now striving to champion diversity in all that they do. The creative industry stands to benefit hugely from such improvements, particularly when it comes to creating inclusive campaigns. Read on and we’ll explain why diversity matters in marketing – and what companies can achieve by ensuring that their teams are as diverse as they are talented.

Why is building a diverse marketing team important for creating inclusive campaigns?

Diversity isn’t just a vital consideration in terms of fairness. It’s also worth thinking about because a diverse team tends to be a more competent one. And nowhere is this more evident than in the creative industry, where the experience of key team members is key to the creation of truly inclusive campaigns.

Campaigns speak to new audiences.

If the team behind a campaign is a diverse one, then brainstorming sessions will always draw on experiences from many different cultures and backgrounds. This results in a campaign that’s capable of speaking to a range of audiences, allowing a company to target its products to new markets. And of course, brands are less likely to accidentally cause any PR-related disasters if their campaigns are the work of a more diverse marketing team.

Messaging steers clear of unconscious bias

Unconscious bias is a real issue in the creative industry, but hiring a diverse marketing team is a great way to solve such issues. If a team is truly diverse, then it’s unlikely to face issues resulting from a common unconscious bias amongst those planning its campaigns. So, resulting campaigns will be inclusive by nature – and audiences will soon pick up on this.

Embarrassing mistakes can be avoided

Creative campaigns go viral for all the wrong reasons with increasing regularity. While a viral campaign is often great news in terms of building brand awareness, it isn’t so welcome when that surge in awareness causes damage to the brand’s reputation. This is a real risk if a campaign causes offence, or appears to lack inclusivity. Hiring a diverse marketing team means gaining a better understanding of a range of different cultures, which can stop campaigns from going viral for all the wrong reasons.

These ads from Wells Fargo can appeal to multiple aspects of someone’s intersectional diversity.

Talented Team Mean Better Campaigns

All great marketing teams begin with a meticulous recruitment process, through which companies seek to hire the best talent for the job. If such processes are planned with diversity in mind, brands can only improve their chances of hiring top talent and gaining a new team member who will soon prove to be a real asset. Champion diversity during the recruitment process to build a brilliantly capable team, well-positioned to deliver truly creative campaigns.

Diversity matters, so don’t overlook it

The best marketing campaigns are always the result of the combined efforts of a diverse team of people, whose knowledge comes together to create disruptive messaging that really works. Hire a diverse team and you’ll ensure that your next campaign is inclusive, intelligent and culturally sensitive.

About the author:

Sean Begg Flint is the founder of Position Digital, a digital marketing agency for ambitious startups and growing brands. He is passionate about purpose-driven content marketing and using outreach for good.

Seven Biases in the Workplace – Let’s Be Brutally Honest About It!

How many of us would assume an overweight employee would be slow and lazy? Photo from online human resources.

Link to part 2: More About Unconscious Bias – A Guest Blog by John Luecke

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Let’s really get honest with each other. How many have thought these things:

1. You see the pretty blond successful woman: “Yeah, she obviously got there by sleeping with the bosses.”

2. You see the overweight employee … “They are probably slow and lazy and spend half their day eating snacks at their desk.”

3. You see the new young millennial employee … “Ughh! I hope I don’t have to work with him. He will probably feel entitled, will probably want to be promoted into my job after 3 months, and will probably be playing video games all day at his desk.”

4. The older mature employee … they will never be able to keep up with change and always wants to do things the way they were done 20 years ago.

5. The single mother with three small children … “I don’t want her on my team. She’ll probably miss half of each work week taking care of child emergencies.

Do we assume a black female executive was promoted to achieve TWO diversity metrics? Photo from League of Black Women

6. The new black female executive … “Obviously promoted to fill a quota. And they get double credit with her … black AND a woman.”

7. The gay man and the lesbian. “Oh – I better be careful – all they will be thinking about all day is having sex with me.”

And of course this list is not exhaustive… I am sure you can think of several more.

So what should we do? It is important to recognize that these unconscious bias thoughts could simply pop into our head. We need to realize that they are there and that they are wrong, and take deliberate action to squelch them. Get to know each person you work with as an individual with a job to do and with key skills they bring with them. Realize the value of each and every team member, and work to promote a diverse team that works together in a mutually respectful climate to achieve the very best business results.

We can each take thoughtful preemptive action to set aside our unconscious bias to create a workplace where everyone is equally valued and treated with respect.

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Blog author Stan Kimer is career development and diversity consultant. Within the diversity and inclusion area, Stan can handle all areas of diversity, and has a deep expertise in LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender.) Please do explore the Total Engagement Consulting website to learn more of Stan’s expertise, and please do not hesitate to contact him at [email protected] to discuss how he can assist your organization in these areas.