Breaking Barriers: The Rise of Black Girl Digital

Breaking Barriers The Rise of Black Girl Digital (2)
Photo Courtesy: LaToya Shambo

By: Joshua Finley

LaToya Shambo, the founder and CEO of Black Girl Digital, is shaking things up in influencer marketing. With a background spanning over sixteen years in advertising, her passion began in college, which led her to work with esteemed companies like Complex and Condé Nast and even worked at renowned filmmaker Spike Lee’s Spike DDB. However, it was a pivotal moment after surviving a life-threatening car accident shortly after giving birth to her daughter that fueled her determination to carve her own path in the industry.

The Birth of Black Girl Digital

Following her accident, LaToya had an epiphany, realizing her calling to create something that would empower black women in the advertising world. “The accident was an eye opener,” she shares. “I felt like I got another chance. It was my opportunity to make something of my life.” This realization birthed Black Girl Digital, a global influencer marketing agency that has been shaping the landscape for over eight years. LaToya’s vision for her agency was clear: to provide opportunities and visibility for Black creators in an industry where they’re often overlooked.

In 2016, LaToya opened Black Girl Digital for business at the ideal time. “The world was shifting,” she says. “I saw it happening, and I knew social media influencers were about to be huge. I pivoted into the right lane at the right time.” As an early player in the influencer space, Black Girl Digital quickly took off. 

At Black Girl Digital, the team handles every aspect of influencer marketing, from communication and planning to coordination, contracts, and negotiations, ensuring seamless partnerships between brands and creators. Their approach is rooted in understanding the core principles of marketing, ensuring that each campaign serves its purpose effectively.

Tips for Brands Looking to Work With Brand Influencers

LaToya Shambo’s expertise in the influencer marketing sphere has provided her with invaluable insights into what makes collaborations successful. Here are her three essential tips for brands venturing into influencer partnerships:

  • Have Clear Goals and Specific KPIs

LaToya emphasizes the importance of setting clear goals and specific key performance indicators (KPIs) for influencer campaigns. “You have to know what you want to achieve in that partnership. Get super specific about your KPIs and build your creative strategy around that,” she advises. This clarity ensures that both the brand and the influencer are aligned in their objectives, leading to more effective campaigns.

  •  Be Transparent with Creators

Transparency is key to fostering trust and building strong partnerships with influencers. LaToya stresses the importance of clear and honest communication between brands and creators. “Being clear and transparent just makes for better partnerships,” she explains. By openly discussing goals, expectations, and intentions, brands can ensure that influencers are fully equipped to create authentic, impactful content that resonates with their audience.

  • Give Feedback to Creators

LaToya advocates for providing constructive feedback to creators, whether positive or negative, to help them improve and grow. “Tell the creator how they performed. Give them that feedback, good or bad, so they can know, ‘Okay, what do I need to do better?'” she advises. By offering feedback and performance metrics, brands empower influencers to refine their strategies and deliver better results in future collaborations.

Breaking Barriers The Rise of Black Girl Digital
Photo Courtesy: LaToya Shambo

Continuing a Journey of Empowerment 

Looking ahead, Black Girl Digital will unveil a new division: Black Girl Media Group, an empowering influencer and podcast management channel focusing on audience interests. Black Girl Digital is poised to make significant strides in influencer marketing. With the upcoming inaugural Black Influencer Weekend scheduled from November 1-3 in Atlanta, GA, they’re gearing up for a transformative event filled with panel discussions, workshops, networking opportunities, and brand activations. This empowering weekend will culminate in the 3rd Annual Black Girl Digital Awards, where they’ll honor outstanding Black creators who have made a remarkable impact in the industry. 

Additionally, Black Girl Digital’s exclusive partnership with Curastory, a first-to-market and all-in-one enablement platform for creators to record, edit, monetize, distribute, and analyze social media videos and programmatic influencer media buying tech platform, will allow deeper performance measurement for return on spend from influencer posts and automated systems for matching influencers to brand campaigns. As LaToya and Black Girl Digital continue their mission of empowering Black influencers and content creators, they remain motivated by their profound impact on lives and the development of the next generation of marketers.



Published by: Khy Talara


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