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Breaking Barriers and Building Brands


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Dr. Amara Pope is a seasoned professional marketer specializing in diversity, inclusion, and an impressive wealth of knowledge in R&B/Hip Hop Music. In this episode, Dr. Pope shares her insights on the current movement of removing DEI efforts, cultural appropriation, and promoting authentic diversity in marketing.

The Dismay of Moving Away from Inclusivity 

Dr. Amara Pope highlights the cyclical nature of social movements in her diversity work. She explains how it’s disheartening to see a downward trend in prioritizing diversity and inclusion efforts in educational sectors and workplaces.  Drawing from her own experiences of living in the intersectionality of race and ethnicity Dr. Pope brings over a decade of experience both personal and professional into her work.

Addressing Cultural Appropriation

Drawing from her research on the music industry, Dr. Pope discusses the nuances of cultural appropriation, emphasizing the importance of paying homage and uplifting marginalized voices. She shares perspectives from artists like Drake and Justin Bieber on participating in cultural spaces with respect and authenticity.

Overcoming Challenges and Achieving Success

Dr. Pope proudly shares highlights from her career where she knows her work made a significant impact. In one such case, she reflects on helping an investment firm embody a more diverse workforce. Through her creative vision, she guided the organization to a brand refresh, complete with diverse images and inclusive language for their website and accompanying marketing materials. These initiatives made a significant impact on how the company was more positively perceived by its audience.

As we navigate the complexities of promoting diversity and inclusion in marketing, Dr. Pope's insights remind us of the importance of authenticity, representation, and genuine engagement. By embracing diversity and inviting diverse perspectives, brands can foster innovation, drive positive change, and resonate with a more inclusive audience

Listen to this episode to learn about...

  • [2:37] Why DE&I efforts must go deeper than surface level to be effective
  • [6:13] How Dr. Pope applies her behavioral study expertise to a range of industries  
  • [15:37] How genuine human curiosity can bring us closer together

Tune in to the Members Only episode to learn how Dr. Pope handled a professor who tried to discourage her Ph. D studies