Now on @Slideshare: The Rise of Black Alternative Culture

blackalt4-625x290

The 2013 Afropunk Festival played host to almost 60,000 people over the course of its two days in Brooklyn, and probably 70% of them were either African American or part of the African diaspora.  The success of Afropunk speaks not only to is success as a festival brand.  More important, I think, is the presence of an audience that can support it.  In that regard, this audience has been growing and evolving for a while, to the point where we see multiple expressions of what I call the #NewBlackImagination.

I define the #NewBlackImagination as a post-modern sensibility among some black folk, one that makes us re-evaluate our assumptions about race, gender, sexuality and–most importantly–representation.  It’s about defying convention, breaking out of boxes, and questioning things we do, say or believe out of course.  As I point out in the deck, you see it clearly

The bottom line for brands: It’s WAY past time for brands to get smarter about how they try to engage this audience.  There’s a broader, more nuanced palette from which to draw.  Just relying on hip hop isn’t quite as compelling and it shows that you’re being lazy.  That’s not a way to capture the #NewBlackImagination.

This is a new area for brands, especially if you’re used to thinking of hip hop as your go-to channel for reaching today’s black audiences. The black alternative crowd is a growing cohort, and it’s one you’ll need to pay attention to.  To get things started,  I’ve made some recommendations at the end of the presentation.  Take a look, and let me know what you think.

 

 

Take my 2014 Reader Survey!

Have you taken my Reader Survey? It'll only take three (3) minutes and will help me increase the value I provide you.

Here's the link:

YES, I'LL TAKE THE SURVEY!