Tag Archives: advertising

Black Women vs Shea Moisture

For several days I’ve been observing the Shea Moisture public relations nightmare. The reaction on social media has sparked so much of what I wrote about in my book Breaking Through The Black Ceiling. Here are my thoughts about the situation:
  • This isn’t the first time Shea Moisture has “offended” people of color, it’s just the first time some people noticed. The company previously had an ad featuring a white baby which also caused an uproar.

 

  • Although I feel Shea Moisture had a disproportionate number of people of color represented in their recent ad, as a black business owner, I (still) wonder why people of color don’t think we (black business owners) should be allowed to earn revenue from consumers that don’t look just like us . Money is green and necessary for businesses to operate. That’s a fact. Businesses don’t exist for likes, the actually plan to make profits unless they structure themselves as a not for profit organization. White owned companies make revenue off of black people everyday. Many black people work for such companies and use their products daily. Let that marinate.

 

  • Hair care products are primarily marketed to WOMEN, who have a combined $5 TRILLION in spending power in the USA alone, so a smart business owner in the hair care business, who knows this would want to target ALL women in their ads. Several companies do. Loreal does it. In fact, if you open the May 2017 ESSENCE Magazine (a popular monthly publication which celebrates women of color), Loreal has paid for a 2 page FOUNDATION ad that includes several women of all races and complexions, along with a…      wait for it …..      Black MAN.  And before you get mad about that, men often need makeup applied when they’re ACTORS and MODELS. Contrary to what you see on social media, everybody isn’t perfected by the use of Photoshop. To me the ad makes sense.

Loreal cosmetics knows their products, and those of their competitors are used in film, television, theater and may be used by men, including make up artists.

As a woman, I’m not at all offended. As a business owner I’m not mad at Essence Magazine for securing that bag. There’s nothing to see here. It’s business. And it’s not bad business

  • Yes, Shea Moisture messed up in their casting process, and someone there should have insisted on having more diversity represented, prior to or after seeing the ad, however Carol’s Daughter also has women who aren’t black in their recent ads for their products. Are we going to get mad about that too, or naw?

 

  • The right to solely use products including ingredients such as shea butter, cocoa butter or castor oil are not exclusively reserved to black folks. In fact, if you make such products and only target black people as consumers, you’re greatly limiting the amount of revenue you could potentially make, doing your business a disservice. Black business owners SHOULD capitalize and profit off of our greatness too and that means thinking GLOBALLY instead of locally in some instances.
For the record, United Airlines is still winning the PR fuckery of the year award. Pepsi is still in second place. Shea Moisture is like #6 or something, bit they’re definitely not on the top 5. The mistake they made doesn’t hurt anyone directly, physically, financially or minimize important social issues with the assistance of a Kardashian. It was a bad idea, that can also serve as a wake up call towards something more important; how women of color make changes to address a lack of diversity. 
Instead of complaining on social media and “modeling” on Instagram, some women of color who aspire be seen for likes should show up for the next casting call held by Shea Moisture and make a difference that way – by going out for the opportunity to positively represent diversity. And more women of color should become educated to work in the business fields related to advertising and marketing so they can apply for the jobs that make those decisions in the marketplace.

The lesson from this issue to women of color is become the change you want to see in the world and secure a bag in the process. Otherwise, diversity will not be the goal for a lot of companies, including ones you’re already consumers of.

New Year – New Beginnings

I enjoy New Years. I don’t enjoy it for the parties or the pomp and circumstance. I enjoy an opportunity to have a new beginning. Even when you have a good year to begin with, having an opportunity to improve on it can be highly motivational. Whatever you didn’t finish in 2014, you can complete with bravado in 2015. Whomever or whatever you should have eliminated from your environment in 2014, can be left at the door in 2015.

New beginnings are beautiful. New beginnings are empowering. New beginnings should spark a desire within to become even better than you were yesterday, or this year. If you’ve been a fan for a while, you’re aware that I don’t believe in making resolutions. Instead, I elect to set goals for myself that can be achieved and measured. I am proud that I have completed many of my goals in 2014. Those few tasks that were completed are still many steps ahead for 2015, simply because I started on them and set realistic expectations, then I allowed the Masters Plan to improve upon them one day at a time. You can do the same. Begin your new beginning now. Not another year from now.

That goal you’ve been trying to get on the right foot with but it keeps going left, may simply need the insight of someone who can mentor you in order for it to grow and flourish. But you have to start today.

That weight you want to lose can be gone before you know it and you may just need someone to motivate you and encourage you to adopt healthier eating habits or more physical activity more often. But you have to start today. And that person to motivate you could be the same person you see in the mirror.

That education you may want to pursue might be available for free online. Google it. But you have to start today.

Some opportunities are indeed once in a lifetime; however some opportunities are there for the taking when we take the necessary steps toward them. That then creates additional opportunities that you may not realize. But you have to start today.

If Super Woman Productions and Publishing can assist you with your new beginning by helping you publish your books, by speaking at your events or for your groups to motivate you, by helping you prepare for interviews for television or radio, by advertising your products and services, or by involving you or your business in our events so that you can meet others who can assist you, those opportunities have been made available to you. That’s what the Super Woman Brand is here for and that’s what I strive to do with my books, blogs, events and words; encourageentertain and empower YOU.

Start your new year today. 

Start your new beginning today. 

 

Estrogen Economy

It is true that people, in the Black community, in particular, need to cooperate with each and support each other more. In a time when we should be learning to co-exist more peacefully with one another we are often too divisive among ourselves. We self segregate and hold onto mindsets that set us up for failure instead of embracing those that encourage us towards greatness. I recall sometime ago when speaking with my mentor about my business goals, he asked me what my demographic is. I told him “Detroiters” are my demographic and he told me I was wrong. I said “Black folks” are my demographic and again he told me I was wrong. I admitted to him that I was confused and didn’t quite understand what he was leaning towards. He told me “Your demographic is women. Not women in Detroit. Not Black women. Women, period. No matter where you go or where you’re from, women will be able to relate to you because you are a woman, too.

Although somewhere deep down, I probably already knew that, on that day it was like the hand of God Himself granted me infinite wisdom.

Some of what I was already doing in my business model was fitting my demographic; I just needed to be fully conscious of it. 

Yes, I’m from Detroit and I love my city, even when it doesn’t love me back. Yes, I’m Black and I love my people even when they don’t treat me or each other right. But at the end of the day, I love myself. And I am a woman.  I understand what that means from the bottom of my feet to the top of my head. I understand how women often are working and trying to achieve in male dominated fields, but lack support from other women and from men. I understand how many women have to work, go to school themselves and send their kids to school as well. I understand what sacrifices women make for their loved ones. I understand the issues women have with men, relationships, self-esteem and finances. I get it because I am a woman.

I’m also smart enough to know that if I sit around and just wait for specifically Detroiters and Black folks to embrace and support me, I will never get to where I want to be.

One of the things I’m most thankful for is that I understand and embrace diversity as well. Although I’m “prowoman, my Super Team is very diverse. We range in age, experience, race, class, education and culture. However, the majority of the members on my Super Team are, in fact, other women.  This wasn’t intentional or determined by company policy. It is what is meant to be and therefore it has developed into what it is. Simple. I don’t discriminate against men, but I do find it more difficult to work with them sometimes because of their preconceived notions based on physical attraction or what their experiences tell them a woman should be able to do…and not do. I’ve had more men claim that they would love to work with me then turn around and be deceitful and dishonest in their business practices, than women have, because unfortunately, the men started off with an agenda that wasn’t about business at all. I’m not the only woman who has had this experience with men in business either. I operate my business with integrity and character and I expect the same from all the people I do business with. It just so happens that the people I can work effectively with are other women.

This year thus far has had many amazing developments for The Brand. This month has been another fast paced, yet amazing one in my Super World. And throughout it there has been a common reoccurrence. I was being approached and embraced by the women in the room, no matter where I was at. It’s one of those things you have to step outside of yourself for a moment to realize and reflect upon. It’s a moment I have to enjoy at that moment. Which I have learned to do.

Women’s Day Tea was a complete success on Friday, March 8, 2013. It was a celebration of women in hip hop and women owned businesses. At the event we had Mae Day, Lola Damone, Smiley Davis and El DeBarge Jr. in attendance. Everyone that attended said how much they enjoyed the event. Many of whom wanted to know when we’d have another event and if we’d have another Women’s Day Tea in 2014. The answers are ‘yes‘ and ‘yes‘. I was so happy that everyone else enjoyed themselves. All of the stress was definitely worth the smiles and ‘thank you’s‘ from everyone.

We’re working towards completion of the I Feel Good: Mind, Body and Soul Women’s Conference this August. The goal is to reach young women and show them possibilities that will help them become stronger, better, more confident adult women; and help adult women become stronger and better as well. The goal is not to make women into what men think they should be, but to teach women to embrace what womanhood truly IS.  Womanhood is not us tearing each other down (‘she’s fake’, ‘look at her, she thinks she cute’, ‘I don’t like her because of her shoes’); it’s about us building and lifting each other up. Building and lifting each other up sometimes will require positive reinforcement, correction and constructive criticism. Those things are not esteem or dream killers; they are strength and confidence builders. We’re looking for ways to save money on the venues and materials as well so that we can have the young ladies ages 11 – 18 attend for free and then pass the additional cost savings on to women attending over the age of 18. We’ve also added the option of In-Kind donations for the items that we need to make the event a success, such as beverages, lunch, marketing materials and advertising. We’re seeking media partners across Metro Detroit who may be interested in being title sponsors in exchange for helping us get the word out. I Feel Good: Mind, Body and Soul Women’s Conference is promised to be another successful Super Woman Productions and Publishing event held in Detroit, just like the two we’ve had so far in 2013.

About a week before Women’s Day Tea, a brilliant concept popped into my head from God. It was two simple words:

Estrogen Economy ©

What is it? What can it do? How do we get it? And yes, I’m copyrighting it. It’s about to be huge.

Prior to the concept being gifted to me, I was already contributing to the concept. Women’s Day Tea on Friday, March 8, 2013 was clearly evidence of that. Super Woman Productions and Publishing was the only company in the state of Michigan that held an official celebration of International Women’s Day. That’s one point for the Estrogen Economy© already. Over the next several months, my other upcoming projects will also contribute to the Estrogen Economy© in many ways as well. I hope other women, and companies throughout the state of Michigan, will join this initiative over the next several months. Some have already indicated that they will. That makes me smile.

#EstrogenEconomy – 2013 through ∞