I kept coming back this week to this photo we wrote about back in February. You may remember the one: a nearly two-year-old boy, a Target run, and a merchandising display that featured someone who looked like him.
At the time, it was heartwarming. But, as we wrote then, it was also a great reminder of how impactful reflecting your customers-all of them-in your marketing channels can be.
"Brands and marketers often talk about the value of representation, but we often look at it through the lens of where that representation is missing," we wrote at the time. "In fact, it's pretty rare for us to see the power of representation in this manner."
It's a photo that feels especially relevant.
The conversation we were referring to in February is much more in focus right now, and, pretty quickly, we're starting to see brands question how they've approached representation in their marketing. In order to make real changes, though, brands will need to respond as purposefully as they have quickly.
Last year, when we talked with Liz White, the former Chief Customer Officer of Fullbeauty Brands, about how she had her teams rethink their model choices, she explained to us the level of work that went into ensuring representation and building a more accessible brand. It took time, she said, and it wasn't until the team started bringing those changes to all aspects of their marketing campaigns-without her suggesting-that she knew the work had been done.
If there's any lesson wrapped up in that Target photo from earlier this year or our conversation with Liz, it's this: Like any campaign, the shift to a more diverse, inclusive brand will take sustained repetition.
Want to talk?
We've heard from customers this week who are looking for an outside view on how their brands are adjusting social strategies. We certainly don't have all the answers. But we do have a great community of brands. And we're committed to hosting discussions to help facilitate positive change.
If you're interested in talking with peers about how to make meaningful adjustments, join our Social Network. (If you've registered before, just reply to this email and let me know you want to participate.) We'll be kicking off conversations the week of Monday, June 15.