The Future Is Still Empowerment

Confidence and change are sweeping across the continent: fueled by a new global consciousness and activism. The truth is that now is the time to empower the new African consumer!

Subscribe

Never miss a TrendWatching Quarterly Briefing!

Because African Lives Matter, too!

And now, expectations of empowerment are evolving due to the progress Africans are seeing their trans-Atlantic siblings push for – with support from brands.

On the global stage think Noir Reads, a subscription service delivering black-authored books monthly. Or Snapchat’s filters celebrating Black History Month. Both are timely examples of how US brands are empowering the black community. Africans witness these initiatives and expect the same for themselves! Furthermore, brands outside the continent are busy rewarding, empowering and celebrating Africans (see Google and Yeezy below), which is the ultimate validation.

The question many Africans on the continent are asking now? Why are local brands lagging behind!?

Because the African Patriarchy is falling!

African consumers today are becoming less tolerant of patriarchy and sexism. Catalyzed by global movements such as the popularization of feminism, Africans are beginning to localize these issues and question cultural norms in their own society. These movements have been gaining traction due to the surge of new platforms and spaces that allow otherwise muted citizens to vocalize their stance, with unprecedented reach.

From the call for South Africa’s first female president, to the highly publicized campaigns against child brides or even female genital mutilation, female empowerment on the continent is at its peak.

Because progress dislikes regress!

It’s been a long journey, and one that’s far from over, yet Africans are beginning to enjoy the benefits of democracy and how it functions in society. ECOWAS’ combined efforts to expel Gambia’s former leader Yahya Jammeh, who refused to accept his loss in their recent elections, is proof that even beyond citizens, on a macro-scale, most countries are striving to keep on moving forward and are prepared to use any necessary force to prevent going back on their progressive ideals.

The consequence of all this?

Now is the time for African brands to follow the optimism of the people and empower them with education, transparency, infrastructure and entrepreneurship.

Innovation examples

Featuring Odekro, Google, Yeezy and more…



Take action

As the above examples demonstrate, empowerment takes many shapes. Lifting consumers out of poverty by providing access to otherwise hard-to-attain resources, tackling corruption, promoting transparency or confronting bad governance are honorable causes, but as a brand, remember that even simple, seemingly lighthearted solutions can lift the self-esteem of your customer and empower them, too!


Your response?

This truth feels:

About The Author:

Lola Pedro

Lola Pedro is Africa Regional Director at TrendWatching. Based in Lagos, Nigeria she oversees all sub-Sahara Africa regional content and speaking engagements. She holds an BSc in Multimedia Technology and Management Systems and a MSc in Technology Entrepreneurship from University College London.

Full bio

Subscribe

Never miss a TrendWatching Quarterly Briefing!