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Innovative Marketing From Nonprofits Committed To Diversity, Inclusion And Lifting Black Voices

June 5, 2020 Sarah Cavill

Shutterstock_1251591493 Peaceful protest

In the wake of nationwide protests demanding justice and equal rights for black communities in America, many concerned citizens were looking for ways to help. Brands, activists and community leaders were quick to generate lists of nonprofits and charities working directly with black communities to increase diversity, inclusion and understanding across all institutions in America. 

Here is a list of nonprofits that make increasing diversity, equality and visibility the centerpiece of their organizations. In addition to donating, supporters can listen and learn from these organizations about the changes that are needed. Each of these nonprofits uses effective marketing tactics to spread their messages and increase awareness.

The NAACP: #WeAreDoneDying

Founded in 1909, the NAACP has been a voice for the voiceless in black communities, standing up across the country against violence, discrimination, condemnation and segregation. In response to the death of George Floyd and the protests across the country, the Baltimore-based organization held an emergency town hall June 3, with NAACP President Derrick Johnson, politicians and community leaders discussing the need for “bold new action to combat racism, domestic terrorism, unjust policing.” The NAACP deployed the #wearedonedying hashtag across social media during the protests. As a nonprofit steeped in history and respect, the NAACP has corporate and philanthropic partnerships across the country to amplify issues of discrimation and “to ensure a society in which all individuals have equal rights without discrimination based on race.”

The NAACP has launched many stirring campaigns during their history, often as part of membership drives, but also pertaining to social issues including voting and most recently completing the Census. The NAACP campaign for the 2020 Census includes actress Yvette Nicole Brown and other black celebrities encouraging people to complete their Census forms. The call to action directs people to the NAACP website for more information. The hashtag #becounted has also been deployed as a part of the strategic marketing campaign around the Census from the NAACP.

National Museum of African American History and Culture: Talking About Race

After decades of effort, The National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) opened in 2016. The NMAAHC, through interactive exhibitions, a permanent collection of more than 36,000 artifacts and outreach with other museums and educational institutions, aims to elevate the stories of black Americans. The museum said “It explores what it means to be an American and share how American values like resiliency, optimism and spirituality are reflected in African American history and culture.” The NMAAHC “is the only national museum devoted exclusively to the documentation of African American life.”

On May 31, the museum announced the launch of the Talking About Race portal. An online resource for “individuals, families and communities to talk about racism, racial identity and the way these forces shape every aspect of society, from the economy and politics to the broader American culture.” The Talking About Race portal was announced on social media channels and across traditional media. By creating a product that aligns with their mission, NMAAHC provides engagement with users who, especially right now, might be looking for information, which creates trust and may scale future memberships.

The National Diversity Council: Making The World A More Equal Place

National Diversity Council tweet

The National Diversity Council (NDC) works with the private, public and nonprofit sectors to create equitable and multicultural environments in the workplace, local communities, schools and healthcare facilities. From the NDC website, “The National Diversity Council is a forerunner of community based, national organizations that champion diversity and inclusion across the country. It is currently made up of state and regional councils, the National Women’s Council, the Council for Corporate Responsibility and the Healthcare Diversity Council.”

The NDC offers certification training in diversity, plus mentorships, leadership initiatives and ongoing live events that include thought leaders from diverse populations. Dennis Kennedy, Founder and Chairman of the NDC offered a statement on the current protests, reasserting NDC’s commitment to diversity, equality and inclusion. The NDC has formed strategic partnerships with corporate brands including AT&T, UPS and Honda. Strategic partnerships can offer amplification of brand messages, particularly when co-branding studies or annual reports, as NDC often does. 

Project Include: Bringing Diversity To The Tech And Startup Sectors 

According to recent data “only 1% of venture capital-backed tech companies are founded by black and African American entrepreneurs.” Project Include aims to change that by offering a guide to tech startups, using “data and advocacy to accelerate diversity and inclusion solutions in the tech industry.” Project Include offers solutions that require three things: inclusion, comprehensiveness and accountability. By creating a framework and using meaningful metrics, Project Include asks CEOs to really examine what their companies are losing by not being more diverse, and what they gain when they are. Throughout the protests, Project Include has been retweeting messages from companies that have committed to improving hiring practices and increasing investments in black businesses.

Project Include has a very active and engaged social media presence on Twitter and LinkedIn, offering messaging about Project Include and other brands and businesses whose values align with theirs. Nonprofits that stay highly engaged on social media, interacting thoughtfully with users and adding value to conversations, are likely to reach more people and increase interest in their missions, encouraging buy-in, action and future donations.

Nonprofits Working Together To Amplify Black Communities Through Partnerships And Social Media Support

One of the most important ways nonprofits create lasting change is through allyship. Here are several charities acting as allies to amplify the voices and the urgency of the protests happening now in America.

HRC

Human Rights Campaign (HRC), one of the largest LGBTQ nonprofits in the country, has been vocal on social media throughout the protests, particularly as it relates to offering support to black people in the LGBTQ community. HRC and 75 other LGBTQ communities released a letter of solidarity with the protestors condemning racist violence and committing to continuing intersectionality across their activism. This year’s Pride celebrates 51 years since the Stonewall Riots.

Covenant House, which offers housing and support to more than 74,000 youths each year, 62% of whom are black, has taken a proactive approach on their Twitter feed, citing the distressing statistics that surround black homelessness among youths and affirming their organization’s commitment to keeping those young people safe. Covenant House also published a letter on their website, asserting solidarity with the current movement: “Let’s lift our voices and take action together to confront and dismantle racism and violence and build the world our kids deserve.”

white coats for black lives WC4BL

In a year when the lives of healthcare workers have been turned upside down by the impact of coronavirus, White Coats For Black Lives has turned its attention to supporting the protestors. WC4BL is hosting a national conference call with health professionals on June 6 to strategize concrete actionable items to fight for equality in the justice system. WC4BL was created to root out systemic racism in medical schools, hospitals and the care of black patients.

Is Your Organization Looking For New Ways To Expand Its Outreach?

Until we see equal support and representation of all populations, we all have more work to do. It is everyone’s responsibility to want more and to take actions to achieve more for our communities, ourselves and our children. Shows of support can include donations, petition signatures and increased education. Click here to learn more.

About the Author

Sarah Cavill

With more than 20 years of writing, editing and reporting experience, Sarah Cavill brings to Digital Media Solutions (DMS) a fine-tuned and diverse set of skills. Her work has been featured in notable publications including The Daily Muse, CBS Local, Techlicious and Glamour magazine. Sarah has a passion for current events and the deep-dive research that goes into the content development and brand identity of DMS Insights. In her role as Senior Marketing Communications Writer, Sarah contributes to the pitching, researching and writing of multiple stories published each week surrounding digital and performance marketing innovations in pop culture, news, social media, branding and advertising.

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