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Nov 12, 2021

The future state of inclusive marketing

The future state of inclusive marketing Featuring The No Normal Show of Revive

How can marketers speak more authentically to their audiences? It starts with diversity, equity, and inclusion.

This episode features Desirée Duncan, Revive’s Vice President of Health Equity and Inclusion. Desirée advises clients and internal teams on addressing health inequities in the communities our clients serve. Desirée is passionate about sharing the stories of those who have been silenced and lifting the authentic voices that deserve to be heard.


  • Inclusive and multicultural marketing is not new, but George Floyd’s death, coupled with the health inequities revealed by COVID-19, spotlighted diversity and inclusion.  
  • When you think of words like “misrepresented,” “underserved,” or “marginalized” to describe your audiences, it’s unclear which populations you’re talking about, leaving more room for error of interpretation. 
  • Be clear about the groups you’re referring to and the people you want to reach. For example, if you’re looking to reach a specific audience, identify the audience explicitly. Identifying homeless populations, Black populations, or LatinX populations, for example, offers more specificity and clarity.  
  • According to the 2020 census, the American population is becoming increasingly diverse. As our population diversifies, it becomes increasingly important to make consumers feel understood through inclusive marketing efforts.  
  • Marketers and health systems can feel like they have conflicting obligations: mission vs. business. In reality, inclusive marketing has a positive impact on business. 

Brands leading the way in inclusive marketing

  • Our first interaction with advertisements is through creative, making creative a crucial first interaction with the consumer. Fenty, for example, creates advertisements that represent diverse populations, making their audiences’ experience of the Fenty brand more authentic to their lived experience. 
  • In 2020, Peloton pledged to invest $100 million to fight racial injustice and inequity in the next four years. The money went to increasing wages, supporting non-profit partners, and growing learning opportunities.  
  • For example, Peloton partnered with Beyonce and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to improve access to fitness through their platform. The takeaway here is that it’s not just about advertising or reputation; it’s about the entire package. How do we make DEI part of our products, business strategies, and beyond?  
  • It’s also not just about race. It’s also about creating content for specific languages. Not just translating content but “transcreating” content in a way meant to resonate with a particular audience. Gary Vaynerchuk, for example, speaks to the power of language in inclusive content.   

Opportunities to improve marketing inclusivity

  • Inclusion goes beyond ads and should be embedded in every touchpoint within the consumer journey. For example, an advertisement will lose authenticity with diverse audiences if its landing page doesn’t communicate in the same way.
  • Health system marketers have an opportunity to improve inclusion and impact business outcomes by auditing each step of the patient experience. 
  • Expand your circle of influence to avoid groupthink and to expand cultural intelligence and community understanding.  
  • The documentary, Who gets to be an influencer, talks about black creators’ challenges when growing audiences. These challenges have implications for brands’ partnership choices. If we evaluate influencers by their following size alone, we miss a large population who can speak authentically with our audiences.