01 NOV 2021
As part of Black History Month, MediaCom’s Roots employee resource group hosted a full calendar of events recognising the contribution and impact of our Black communities within MediaCom, our industry and the world.
As Co-Chair of MediaCom Roots, my core focus for Black History Month each year is the content. The questions I ask myself each year are:
- Who can we get in to talk that will add value?
- What can they talk about that will help us do our jobs better?
- What are the key takeaways that can help us shape and adapt our offering as an agency?
This year MediaCom had a wide range of speakers in. David Elikwu joined us to speak about the paradox of privilege. David discussed privilege and the misconceptions around it, as well as how to transform our world through a better understanding of luck, fortune and resource allocation.
We were also joined by David Sonubi and Huda Ahmed from No Signal Radio who spoke about their journey to creating one of the biggest Black Radio offerings during lockdown, the rise of their platform and how they are reaping the rewards after authentic creativity.
However, the content that I felt was most relevant to many of the conversations we are having as an industry and as an agency, was the panel I hosted with Ibrahim Kamara (Co-founder of GUAP), Bola Awoniyi (Co-Founder of Black Ballad) and Bianca Wilson (Founder Of The Orchid Group) around the future of creativity and media.
The conversation around diversity is not a new one and it is no secret that the population is only becoming more diverse with less people each year identifying as white. I invited these three panellists specifically because they all own platforms that speak to diverse audiences and ultimately, have insights into how the landscape is changing, and what these audiences’ want from brands.
The conversation was opened by Ibrahim, the co-founder of GUAP, a creative agency that started as a video magazine and has grown exponentially. GUAP are now Kurt Geiger’s creative agency but have also worked with a range of MediaCom clients over the years (something he predicted would happen during our 2018 Black History Month). More than ever brands want to tap into culture, they want to understand and speak to audiences authentically and with the ever-changing diversity of the UK population, they are having to move beyond traditional media platforms to really tap into influencers and content partnership opportunities where they can deliver more complex messaging to a highly engaged audience.
The core of our conversation centred around moving beyond seeing D&I as purposeful, and how brands can get it right and it simply came down to authenticity. Having the right people in the room to help centre diverse voices throughout campaigns, being able to truly understand the lived experiences of your audiences, but also lending authority from established media platforms and creating a value exchange with the communities you are trying to target.
The conversation around Diversity and Inclusion is constantly shifting, but as an agency we must help our clients see beyond purpose and trend led marketing tactics. Trends move on, people are here to stay.