January 8, 2014 by Yanique's Marketing Concepts
Saturday Night Live announced their newest cast member, Ms. Sasheer Zamata, who will make her debut on January 18th on the NBC television show. Ms. Zamata will be the first African American female cast member in nearly a decade.
Saturday Night Live (SNL) and its producer Lorne Michaels came under fire in late 2013 over the cast’s lack of diversity and the series poked fun at its own controversy during its opening segment when Kerry Washington hosted SNL in November 2013. News broke at the end of the year that SNL was holding auditions specifically to find black female cast members to join the program in 2014.
Ms. Zamata, a graduate of the University of Virginia, is the fifth black woman to join the “SNL” cast in the show’s 39-year history. She has been featured in The New York Times, Time Out New York, Jezebel, and Vulture represents the first African-American female to be a part of SNL‘s regular cast since Emmy nominated actress Maya Rudolph in 2007.
You may be wondering what this has to do with marketing. Well, SNL is a prime example of missing out on an entire target audience due to lack of diversity. Although they already have 2 African American male cast members, there is a missed opportunity to act out some of the biggest names in America, like First Lady Michelle Obama, talk show icon Oprah Winfrey or pop artist Beyoncé. You see, there are 43 million African Americans in the United States which is roughly 13% of the total population; the second largest racial minority in the country. According to Nielsen data, African Americans will represent over $1 trillion dollars in buying power by the year 2015 (that’s next year already!).Over $1 trillion dollars!! That’s a whole lot of buying power, wouldn’t you say?! So if a show as popular & long-running as Saturday Night Live is not attracting a particular audience, they are missing out on potential viewership. After all, if I don’t see someone that looks like me at a company, then why would I want to support them?
When executing the marketing plan for your business, think about the audience you may be missing out on. It is essential to include consumers across ALL demographics. And it’s harder to reach those consumers without including them in your initial marketing plans. Remember: Don’t just reach out to them, include them!
This is a little different than my usual posts, but here is an example of the great acting that SNL has been missing out on because of their lack of diversity. Enjoy the clip!