THE 14TH ANNUAL SHORTY AWARDS

The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. View this season's finalists!

Google Black-Owned Friday 2023

Entered in Art Direction, Branded Content, Call to Action, Consumer Brand, Integrated Campaign, Long Form Video, Multicultural Community Engagement, Music & Dance, Music Video, Social Commerce, YouTube Partnership

Objective

Idea: Google's Black-owned Friday campaign was born in 2020 to uplift Black-owned businesses disproportionately affected by the pandemic. Now in its 4th year, this initiative remains relevant; only 5% of holiday shopping goes to Black-owned businesses, and a mere 13% of Americans say they regularly shop at them. While the campaign is called "Black-owned Friday," the core message transcends a single day – it's about driving search, shopping, and sustained support for Black-owned businesses throughout the year.

Goals:

This mission is amplified through impactful, integrated campaigns and partnerships. Notably, collaboration with Black-owned businesses themselves strengthens the community while driving awareness. Google goes beyond promotion, equipping these businesses with resources tailored to maximize holiday sales and foster lasting success.

Strategy

For our 2023 campaign, we drew deep inspiration from the ‘90s club classic “100% Pure Love” by Crystal Waters, transforming it into a music video starring Keke Palmer and dubbed “100% Black-Owned.” The reimagined track became a celebratory anthem and rally cry that stuck in people’s minds and reminded them to shop Black-owned, both on Black Friday and beyond. 

The music video mostly takes place docu-style; we follow Keke as she visits real Black-owned businesses and interacts with their owners along the way. In parallel, we see Keke Palmer’s performance scenes stylized in a ‘90s music video aesthetic. This not only pays homage to the original Crystal Waters video, but also allows us to feature products from Black-owned businesses and Google tools in fun and engaging ways. By flipping the lyrics to 100% Black-Owned, we not only reinforced the pride and power of Black entrepreneurship to all races, we also united generations of music lovers around a great cause, inviting them to record, remix, and share their own content to support Black-owned businesses near them. 

One of our biggest challenges was to thoroughly represent Black business owners and their products across the wide range of cities and business types featured in the campaign. To address this, we built a microsite dedicated to featuring products and services from Black-owned businesses across the U.S. We also gave Black business owners tools, tech, and content to help them be seen, found and shopped more easily. This included a social toolkit for creating custom promotional assets, AI background generators for more eye-catching product photography, and a highly-distributed satellite team of marketers who helped us capture diverse business profiles across the US. 

During the post-production phase, we seamlessly integrated these captured elements into the overall creative vision of the music video, and the entire campaign. Combining this with out-of-home digital billboards and a prominent hyperlink on Google's home page, we were able to promote Black-owned businesses across the world's most prominent platforms, thereby making it easy for people to search, shop and support Black-owned.

Results

Black-owned Friday surpassed our objectives, proving a resounding success due to:

These results prove that the campaign not only resonated with our target audience but also measurably furthered our mission of uplifting the Black business community.

Media

Video for Google Black-Owned Friday 2023

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Google

Links