Combating Digital Bias: Survey Results from Avenue and Construct the Present

Combating Digital Bias Survey Results

Another data point that inspired Avenue to launch this project was the work we do with approximately 8–14 women and BIPOC entrepreneurs each year in partnership with Prosper Portland and Mercatus. On an ongoing basis, Avenue provides digital marketing consultation and business coaching to BIPOC business owners. Through this work, we have witnessed the barriers and pain points experienced by business owners from historically underrepresented communities and have been inspired to take action.

  • Which of the below identifiers best resonates with you as a business owner? Over 50% of respondents identified as Black-owned or BIPOC-owned, while 17.4% identified as LGBTQ+-owned and 4.3% as Other.
  • What types of digital and/or social media marketing activities do you do now? Overwhelmingly, business owners cited Social Media and Organic Search as their primary digital and/or social media marketing activities.
  • How would you categorize your business? Approximately two-thirds of respondents identified as Retail or Personal Care & Services businesses. The next two largest categories of respondents were Advertising/Marketing/PR businesses at 13% and Food & Dining at 8.7%. Consulting, Influencer/Content Creator and Other all came in at ~4.4% each.
  • What challenges have you faced competing for organic visibility on social media, search engines (Google, Bing, etc.), or paid digital advertising (Facebook Ads, Google Ads, etc.)? The top two challenges that business owners reported facing are Challenges Understanding Analytics at 73.9% and the High Cost of Advertising at 69.6%. AI/Algorithmic Bias and Lack of Access to Consulting were the next highest at 39.7% and 39.1%. Shout out to Prosper Portland’s Digital Marketing Program and Xxcelerate’s coaching program that both address this challenge (lack of access to consulting).

What’s Next for this Data?

Since concluding our survey, Avenue has begun developing free educational content to help BIPOC and LGBTQIA+-owned businesses succeed. Topics are guided by the survey insights and range from introductory learning content to advanced resources on analytics, shadowbanning and more. We are sharing these insights and resources publicly via our Combating Digital Bias Series on Avenue’s blog. Stay tuned and follow along as we roll out more free content to address these pain points.

For additional reading, please check out these resources from Avenue on combating bias in digital marketing:

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Anna Madill

Anna Madill

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CEO of Avenue, a B Corp digital marketing agency that amplifies the impact growth-minded and purpose-driven companies have in the world.