Yes, Black Twitter is real. Some people are late to the party but #BlackTwitter has been a thing for a minute. There’s no app for it and it’s not in a secret location. It is simply a sub-group housed on the Twitter social media platform that is all things related to Black culture. Advertising Week is providing a much-needed platform for a variety of conversations that revolve around marketing, branding, strategizing, and all things related. The schedule was tight but there were a few must-see panels. One of them was ‘Woke. Lit & Ready: A Perspective on Black Twitter & The Ad Industry.
The title alone had me intrigued. I spent majority of the morning trying to figure out what the tone of the presentation would be. What were they going to say? What were they going to talk about? Needless to say, it was a dope conversation that covered a lot of bases. The panelists dropped their expertise in their respective areas in relation to BT and its function. God-is Rivera (VML), Singleton Beato (McCann Worldgroup), Jozen Cummings (Bleacher Report), Jasmyn Lawson (GIPHY), and Tiyale Hayes (BET) were on point with all their dialogue. From discussing the origins of BT to how ad companies can benefit from it to the creativity that is birthed there, they put it all into perspective.
BT is responsible for putting people on Front Street, whether the subject matter is good or bad. Many ideas for memes, ad campaigns, challenges, and social movements started in the depths of BT. The #BlackTwitter hashtag is filled with a bevy of information that is not available on the regular Twitter feed. Some people have discovered it and tried to use it to their advantage. Ad companies, brands, have probably dipped into the depths of BT because we’ve seen some of the talent and ideas floating around…yep, we’ve seen it.
Taking ideas and concepts from BT has been happening for some time. Crediting the creativity gets lost in translation and then the original source of the idea gets no shine. A lot of creative people are onto some amazing ideas. Instead of “borrowing” those ideas to skirt the credit, hire some of that talent and creativity so that your brand can totally benefit from it. It beats having your brand try to execute and fail because at the end of the day, Black Twitter will come for you.
Brands and ad agencies don’t really have the option of opting out from pushing campaigns to a target audience. They have an obligation to address all of their consumers with campaigns that will hopefully engage. Knowing how to communicate with target consumers is one of the keys to a successful marketing campaign. Not knowing how to communicate is almost a guaranteed marketing fail. There are a few that stick out like a sore thumb, especially the ones that were geared towards African Americans. Not only did they miss the mark and message, but the effort appears to be minimal. While they may have worked very hard on the execution, their lack of ability to communicate was probably the problem.
This panel was everything and if you missed it, click here to catch up.