Black Economic Empowerment: Myth or Reality?

ImageI have been an advocate for the Virtual Black Community for many years.  Over the past few years there has been an increasing adoption of the Internet and Social Media within the Black community that suggests that the digital divide is almost closed. However, the economic empowerment of Social Media is not being leveraged as effectively as it might be.

From Social Networking to Economic Empowerment.
Black mobile users are more active users of social media than any other segment of the marketplace. Can this rapid adoption be transformed into economic empowerment? I believe the answer is Yes -- if we engage in effective viral activity. A small shift in economically relevant viral activities can make a big difference.

I have noticed the rapid growth is LIKES, FOLLOWERS, AND TWEETS by Black entrepreneurs and their friends. Many entrepreneurs have hundreds or thousands of LIKES on Facebook, and FOLLOWERS on Twitter. But these numbers don't convert to economic activity unless properly leveraged.


Most of the activity on Facebook and Twitter is "one-way communication" -- a nonstop bulletin board promoting the services of the business owner. There is very little activity that is visible from the target audience. If followers and fans would make one small change in their behavior, there would be a dramatic increase in visibility for Black entrepreneurs.

Here is the answer to converting "LIKES" and "FOLLOWERS" into economic empowerment.

Take these steps, and let me know the results.
STEP ONE: On every Facebook post there are three options: Like, Comment, Share. Many people "like" the posts; others take the time to "comment"; but very few "share" the posts. The "SHARE" button is the button the leads to viral activity. The "Like" and "Comment" buttons make the author feel good, but the "SHARE" button pushes the post out into your network of friends. Each "share" action multiplies the economic effectiveness of the post by sharing it with other consumers.
ACTION: Click the "Share" button and tell your friends why you purchased or recommend and article. This is the action that leads to empowerment. Move beyond the lazy and easy step of simply clicking the "like" button on your favorite Facebook Articles.  Your friends are more likely to act on a personal recommendation from you.

STEP TWO: On every Twitter post there are three options: Reply, Favorite, and Retweet. The most effective of these is the "Retweet" button. This is because you forward the message intact, as the author created it. One retweet adds hundreds or thousands of new followers to an effective tweet. This is how to start a trend -- and more importantly -- keep it going. It only requires one click of the mouse.
ACTION: "Retweet" every good post you see for the next few days and see what happens at your Twitter feed. Your followers will appreciate that you are sharing good news with them. Try this and you will see that your friends will also respond. This is how to create viral economic activity.

STEP THREE: As an entrepreneur, don't forget that you are also a consumer. Don't spend so much time promoting yourself and your business that you forget that your support of others is critically important to their success. In a virtual community, we should all share the good news about others.
ACTION: Lead this transformation to effective viral activity by taking the actions above.  Lead your followers to economic empowerment by walking the walk, not just talking the talk.
The key to leveraging our social networks for economic empowerment is to "RETWEET" and "SHARE."  What goes around comes around.

Roger Madison, CEO
iZania,  LLC