What We’re Watching: Diversity and Inclusion as a Brand Strategy Imperative

We recently had the opportunity to attend a webinar put on by WE, entitled WE MOVE FORWARD SERIES: Next Gen in Our Next Chapter.  The webinar discussed how diversity and inclusion was viewed through the lens of younger generations—specifically Millennials and Gen Z.  It was well worth an hour of our time!

A few thoughts on key points from the webinar:

  1. Brands should be encouraged to address issues of diversity and inclusion head on—Millennials and Gen Z expect it!  Get clear on the goal of the communication and tailor it accordingly.  Most importantly, be true to your brand.
  2. Diversity and Inclusion encompasses more than just race or sexual orientation.  It includes inviting people with varied perspectives, interests, and roles to take a seat at the table.
  3. We all have an unintentional bias toward people that “look” like us.  This bias can stymie productive innovation.  In fact, it’s important to include those that DO NOT “look” like us in order to develop the best outcome.
  4. When developing a brand’s strategy, it’s critical to have a foundational true understanding of our consumer (not just by traditional demographics) and why they buy.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • How are decisions made in building my brand?  Are we being inclusive of different points of view?
  • Do I know what’s most important to my consumer and do I understand how they talk about the “need” my brand is designed to fix?
  • Is my brand’s website reflective of all my consumers?  Do we make them feel welcome?
  • Are we really listening to our consumers? Am I encouraging loyalty amongst my customers by making them feel heard?

Challenging yourself and your team to be inclusive of people who have different outlooks and perspectives can only help drive brand success, especially with generations to come.