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6 Steps to Build a Market-Leading Diversity Branding Strategy

Updated: Jun 22, 2021

Diversity Branding Done Right

700,000 searches per month.

Yes, you read it right, Diversity is that popular on google! It is 2 times more searched than the erstwhile most loved word “culture” in the corporate dictionary.

Diversity is not only popular but also most relevant in today’s time, when the world is going through massive shifts in economies – what with them becoming “shared”, “gigged”, “internet or digital” and more “social” day by day. Where one advertisement or one diversity program is what it takes to challenge old-searing mindsets, deep-rooted behaviors and positively impact brand perception. Check these global diveristy campaigns to understand what I am alluding to.

Therefore, using Diversity for Employer Branding purposes can be equally beneficial. If your organization is deeply invested in diversity, recognizes and values the mix of people – whether its ethnicity, race, religion, gender, multi-generation, multi-strata – their commitment to make “everyone” succeed is unwavering. Then it makes business sense to launch an external face or campaign that accentuates your image as a “Diversity Employer’.

At this point, if I actually ask you to think about the Best Companies in Diversity – my gut is you will definitely come up with one of these three names in your list – IBM, Accenture and Aegis. Not Google and Apple, because even though they may be more diverse but they don’t talk about diversity as much as the former do. The former three through their serious and continuous work in the area of Diversity and leave no chance to talk about diversity in their branding efforts across all media - social, PR, digital, events.

Most companies want to include diversity branding as part of their talent branding mix but don’t know how. This blog post addresses precisely this need:

Step 1: Understand how the industry defines ‘diversity’?

Diversity means different things to different people and organizations. Therefore, it is important to apply the industry accepted definitions of diversity. Diversity in the workplace today can include some of the following: Gender, Sexual orientation, Generation /age, Disability, Social strata differentiation, Race, Ethnicity.

Step 2: Establish how is your company different in Diversity i.e. gender, multigeneration, etc and what are your strengths in that particular area?

What it essentially means is to figure out how would you want to be known for in diversity, how are you better than the industry in that area? Example most admired company for working mothers (Accenture), most admired company for transgenders (Walt Disney), most equal place for both genders (Accenture), most inclusive place for all diversity groups (Aegis), the trendsetter in Diversity (IBM, Deloitte), barrier breaker for a specific community (Kochi Metro appoints 23 transgenders, Costa Coffee giving a chance to differently abled as coffee baristas. The more clear and confident you are about your vision or diversity agenda, the more credible your diversity story.

Step 3: Assess what kind of diversity campaign do you want to lead with – internal or external?

If your conclusion is that you are top 10 in gender diversity and your diversity programs are among the best in the industry or your diversity metrics are well defined and are on a positive swing then choose to launch an “external” brand campaign.

If after the assessment you feel, ‘we are serious about diversity but have a long way to go to meet current industry standards’ then it would be best to lead with an internal campaign and strengthen your diversity branding internally before extending it on social media, PR

Step 4: Build your diversity story or campaign

Your D&I teams should cull out the best programs, stats that give an edge to your brand. Your marketing or employer branding team should articulate a powerful theme or brand campaign that represents your strengths in diversity. Example – Together we are powerful, Power of Differences, A Mix we are proud of. Your social media agency should create a hashtag campaign for you that engages your external audience and your PR teams should ensure that you get featured in top media discussing diversity, latest trends, shifting mindsets. Create digital assets, e-marketing campaigns that show diversity as a key differentiator for your employer brand.

Step 5: Use industry influencers in Diversity like Sheroes, JobsForHer, Her Story to boost your campaign

Thanks to social media and media startups like huffpo, sheroes, jobsforher, elevate network, lean in you have readymade platforms to unfold or launch your diversity stories. Use them liberally. Even if they are paid platforms, the money is well spent

Step 6: Pitch for Best in Diversity Awards run by NASSCOM, SHRM, People Matters, Avtar

The awards are a great testimony to your efforts in pursuing and rallying the diversity agenda at your organisation. They are also a great tool to measure your success or benchmark against the industry. Whether you win or lose the award, you come out richer with the insights and best practices in diversity. Leverage them to carve out your next steps or to address gaps in your current diversity plan.

If you need a branding agency or partner who can do all of the above, reach out to Phoenix TalentX Branding!

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