Content writers are voices that touch the masses.
On a regular basis, we’re creating content for people from all over the world to consume. We’re in every industry, and we’re always showing why what we’re talking about works.
Which means we have a great responsibility.
As brain coach Jim Kwik flipped around, “With great power, comes great responsibility.”
And that’s what content writers have. We have great power — we have hundreds of thousands to millions of people reading the content we create for our clients and their businesses. This means: We have a huge responsibility to do it right.
One of the best ways content writers can continue moving the #BlackLivesMatter movement forward is to keep talking about BIPOC in our articles.
How Do Writers Talk About BIPOC In Their Articles?
Highlighting Examples in Articles: Let’s say you have a client who wants you to write an article on digital marketing. They want you to cover the top 10 digital marketing strategies used by different businesses over the past year.
Before you start your research on these strategies, you can get out your notebook and make sure that you’re representing everybody you can in your article. For each strategy you find—who made it happen?
Take a look at your notebook or notes app after and see where you’re doubling, tripling, or quadrupling up on a specific ethnicity or gender.
Mentioning Examples To Support Your Claim: Let’s say your client wants you to write about a specific digital marketing strategy. They haven’t ask you to name specific businesses using this strategy, but as a savvy content writer, you know that proving this strategy works really well is a great way to get readers interested.
In the case of this article you’re going to discuss companies that have succeeded in using this strategy briefly. You’re going to name them all within 3 bullet points (since giving 3 examples is the ideal number if you’re briefly giving examples).
When you research the companies you’ll highlight in your bullet points, check to see that you chose business owners from different backgrounds. Again, get your notebook and notes app and figure out if you’ve just named three people of the same background and gender. If you did—then it’s time to swap two of them out.
Linking To Other People’s Content: If you’re writing a newsletter for a client with a format that highlights 4 pieces of content (articles, videos, etc.) from other publications, you want to look further than the article itself.
Who wrote it?
As you’re finding articles to highlight, you need to look at the author and make sure your newsletter is inclusive and diverse. If every week your newsletter links out to content written from authors of the same background and gender—how is every subscriber supposed to feel connected to that content?
Look who wrote the content and make sure you’re diverse in your author choices.
How Does This Help?
There are so, so, so many problems that come from systemic racism. One of those problems is a lack of diversity in higher business positions. As content writers who highlight business trends, strategies, and talk about our specialty industry — we want everybody to see themselves in our content.
We don’t want to create content that only allows for a person of a specific background and gender to feel represented. We need to create content that makes everyone feel represented.
If you’re thinking, “Yeah, but what about my customer avatar?” — this is a great question.
Here’s the thing: Rarely is a customer avatar tied to a specific product.
When we write content, we’re looking at the traits of our customer avatar. We’re talking about their goals, challenges, pain points, and values. None of this is tied to their ethnicity.
It’s tied to where they are in their lives, and how our client’s business can help them.
That means that we can’t favor one background and hope that everyone will magically feel like our content was created for them. We can easily represent people of different backgrounds in our content and highlight their success and testimonials.
As content writers, we have an impact.
Our writing is read, and that means we have a responsibility to keep this movement moving forward.
Please don’t take it lightly.