February is Black History Month, and with America’s racial injustice reckoning at the top of public consciousness, many brands are eager to show solidarity with the Black community. We urge brands to proceed with caution. Rather than rush to be part of a “trending” cultural conversation, brands must take the time to ensure their campaigns truly honor Black people.
What began in 1926 as “Negro History Week,” Black History Month has evolved as a time to celebrate and recognize the central role of Black people in U.S. history and, most recently, a key moment for Black-owned businesses to drive consumer engagement. With so many brands looking to participate this February, there’s a risk that corporations will co-opt a cultural awareness month that should belong to the Black community.
So, how to get it right? Companies need to figure out how brand platforms, influence and resources can be leveraged over the long term to build a more equitable society. A rushed Black History Month campaign may be well-meaning, but it has no place in a serious DEI strategy. Being a true ally isn’t about having good intentions — it’s about intention meeting impact.
For tips on how to build a Black History Month campaign your Black employees and customers deserve, check out our blog post written by the Praytell PACT team.
Praytell is a creative communications agency that earns attention for brands that matter and clients that get it. Praytell supports a range of lifestyle, technology, and global brands and spreads greater good through its pro bono Passion Project. Named PRWeek’s 2020 Agency of the Year and PRWeek's Best Place to Work seven years running (2013-2020), Praytell believes the golden age of PR is now.
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