The Power of Black Influence in the Creator Economy

LaToya Shambo Claire Sulmers and Lady Jade at Black Girl Digital Black Influencer Power Pop Up event at SXSW 2023 sponsored by LTK Vitavate 103 Collection Shinju Whiskey Haven Conference and Korbel


In 2016, LaToya Shambo launched BLACK GIRL DIGITAL, INC. a premium integrated influencer marketing agency. The agency ensures Black and Brown creators receive fair and equitable brand partnerships. BLACK GIRL DIGITAL has brokered brand deals for more than 300 Black and brown influencers; and millions of social media impressions and video views for companies, including Disney, Walmart, Staples, Brooklinen, and Viacom. In 2022, Adweek honored BLACK GIRL DIGITAL with the Breakthrough Agency or Brand Award. Shambo is a proud Fashion Institute & Technology grad, and she lives in Georgia with her pre-teen daughter.

The rise of the internet and social media has given birth to a new era of creative expression and entrepreneurship. In the era of the creator economy, people from all over the world have the ability to share their ideas and content with a global audience. This has created a space for individuals to monetize their skills and passions, giving rise to a new wave of creative entrepreneurs. Among this wave, Black creatives and entrepreneurs have made a significant impact and are using their influence to shape the future of the creator economy.

The Black community has always been at the forefront of cultural and artistic innovation, but the digital age has given them a new platform to showcase their talent and reach a wider audience. From fashion and beauty to music and entertainment, Black creatives are making their mark in a variety of industries.

In the fashion and beauty industry, Black influencers and entrepreneurs are disrupting traditional standards and creating new avenues for self-expression. Brands are recognizing the influence of Black creators in this space and are investing in collaborations and partnerships to tap into this market. For example, Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty line, which launched in 2017, was a game-changer in the beauty industry. It featured a diverse range of shades and products that cater to all skin tones, making it accessible to a wider audience.

The music industry has also seen the rise of Black artists and influencers who are using their platform to push the boundaries of traditional genre definitions and bring new sounds to the forefront. Artists like Kendrick Lamar, Beyoncé, and Cardi B have used their platforms to address social and political issues, inspiring their fans and bringing attention to important causes.

In entertainment, Black creators are using their platform to tell stories and create content that represents their experiences and perspectives. From movies to TV shows, Black filmmakers and actors are breaking down barriers and bringing new perspectives to the mainstream. The success of films like “Black Panther” and TV shows like “Insecure” and “Black-ish” is evidence of the growing demand for content created by and for the Black community.

Black creators are also making their mark in the tech industry, with many entrepreneurs and investors using their platform to promote innovation and drive change. From software development to virtual reality, Black tech entrepreneurs are pushing the boundaries of what is possible and paving the way for the next generation of tech leaders.

The influence of Black creators extends beyond their respective industries, as they are also using their platform to inspire and empower others. Many Black influencers are using their platform to promote entrepreneurship and financial literacy, inspiring their followers to start their own businesses and invest in their financial future.

In addition, Black creators are using their platform to raise awareness and support for social and political causes. From the Black Lives Matter movement to advocacy for mental health, Black influencers are using their voice to bring attention to important issues and inspire change.

The rise of Black influence in the creator economy is a testament to the power of creativity and entrepreneurship. It also highlights the importance of diversity and representation in the creative industries. The influence of Black creators has not only led to the creation of new and innovative products and services, but it has also challenged traditional standards and paved the way for a more inclusive and diverse future.

However, despite the significant impact that Black creators have had on the creator economy, they still face challenges and barriers to success. The lack of diversity and representation in the tech industry, for example, continues to be a major issue, as Black tech entrepreneurs struggle to secure funding and access to networks of support. The fashion and beauty industry also continues to be dominated by white-owned brands, making it difficult for Black entrepreneurs to break into the industry.

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