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Why You Should Be A Brand Champion For A Black Woman-Owned Business For 2024

I support Black women mug

Black Women Business Owners thrive when they receive the proper support. We’ve seen this in real-time as we've supported Black Women-Owned Businesses from startup to mature and even six-figure businesses. But when you look at the reality, where Black Women are underserved, denied, left out and ignored, only 3% of the 2.7 million Black Women-Owned Businesses make it to maturity.

You can help change this number though. You can be a part of meaningful change that helps:

  • Close the pay equity gap: Black Women Founders earn 5x less than other women founders.

  • Strengthen Black businesses: Black businesses could generate $676,356,621,618 if they were able to increase their revenue to the level of other businesses.

  • Supports communities: Small businesses help strengthen local communities by creating jobs (12.9 million jobs in 25 years), investing in local infrastructure, driving innovation and diversity, and supporting cooperation.

But let’s get into it, how can you actually be a part of this change? Here are three simple things that you can start doing today:

1. Understand what it means to be in partnership with Black Woman Business Owners

Davida Selby of KL&A (L) with a customer during the Buy From a Black Woman Inspire Tour at the H&M French Quarter Store in New Orleans
Davida Selby of KL&A (L) with a customer during the Buy From a Black Woman Inspire Tour at the H&M French Quarter Store in New Orleans. (Photo by Peter Forest/Getty Images for H&M)

Slacktivism and performative support are particularly damaging to Black Women-Owned Businesses because they’re already at a severe disadvantage. This means doing seemingly harmless things like buying products for the Gram and returning them later, demanding free products or labor in exchange for support, or leaving negative reviews for things that are out of their control (like shipping) can literally be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

Black Women Founders need partners who are willing to invest in the relationship long term. Partners who are:

  • Capable of supporting their vision and their dream

  • Willing to support both their short- and long-term goals

  • And able to extend grace and allow space for mistakes

Find Black-Woman Owned brands that you believe in and then consider how you can be in partnership with them long term.

2. Explore what support looks like beyond conventional norms

Of course buying from Black Women is one of the most effective ways to support them. It allows them to reinvest that money in inventory, marketing and other operational costs. But depending on who you are and what you do, you could also potentially:

  1. Ask them what they need and then supply it or help them get it

  2. Give them a cash donation

  3. Pay for a tool, service or subscription they need to run their business

  4. Contribute to their professional development by helping them pay for certifications, conference tickets etc.

  5. Donate or barter your services

  6. Recommend them for a contract or vendor opportunity

  7. Introduce them to influential people in your network

  8. Volunteer at their events or in their business

  9. Engage them on social media and help promote their content

  10. Check in with them from time to time, ask them how they’re doing!

There’s no limit to the ways that you can support and show up for Black Women. Just watch what they’re doing to see how you can fit in, check in with them to make sure they’re good with it, and then commit to supporting them in some way on a regular basis.

3. Show up for Black Women Business Owners

graphic explaining what a brand champion is

Image via Hubspot

According to Hubspot, a brand champion is someone who promotes and builds support for your brand internally and/externally. Similarly, the dictionary definition of brand champion according to Cambridge Dictionary is “a manager who is responsible for creating and developing a brand and encouraging support for it, both inside and outside a company.”

I’m extending what it means to be a brand champion beyond the conventional definition because I’ve seen first-hand what really works for us.

A Black Woman Brand Champion is someone who shows up for Black Women Business Owners consistently and supports them in ways that sustain their business long term.

Show up for Black Women long term, but be present on their terms. It’s as simple as that.

Commit to being a part of their success story

Pick a brand, figure out how you can support them sustainably, commit to doing so long term and then just do it. The beautiful thing about this is you’ll actually get to be a part of their journey and watch as they grow, while playing your part in building a more equitable future. So just do it, be a brand champion. Here’s a directory of Black Woman-Owned Businesses that you can choose from.

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