Not many people can brag about working side by side with one of the world’s most recognizable entrepreneurs. Marketer Teneshia Jackson-Warner can proudly boast of her success rubbing shoulders with, arguably, the most successful Hip Hop Mogul, Russell Simmons.
Founder and CEO of Egami Consulting Group, her company is an award-winning, woman-owned, NMSDC and WBENC certified minority marketing firm specializing in linking brands to urban and multicultural consumers via inspirational platforms. She is is a multifaceted, talented entrepreneur who is the author of the book, “Profit With Purpose: A Marketer’s Guide to Deliver Purpose-Driven Campaigns to Multicultural Audiences.”
It is the first book to be published on multicultural “Purpose-Driven Marketing” and Teneshia takes time out of building multicultural marketing strategies to talk to BlackEnterprise.com.
BlackEnterprise.com: What led you down this path to your current position and the company you started?
Teneshia Jackson- Warner: I originally started down the path fueled by a desire to align my passion and profession. At the time, my career was not fulfilling and I had an overwhelming feeling that I was not doing what I was suppose to do with my life. So, my first assignment that I gave myself was to assess my strengths and passions and then work to find opportunities in that space. That journey led me to founding Egami Consulting Group and also later working extremely close with Russell Simmons at RUSH Communications.
We all know that the multicultural audience is the thing nowadays, what drove you to focus on this particular section of the vast audience available and what are your expectations on how the audience may or may not grow?
Many of my original first projects involved me working closely with Russell Simmons’ RUSH Communications. Most of these initial projects primarily engaged the urban consumer market; ranging from the ‘Get Out the Vote’ Campaign, to a literary initiative entitled, ‘Hip Hop Reader.’ These projects served as a vehicle for our corporate sponsor brands to connect with urban consumers. After working on projects that primarily focused on urban consumers, we expanded our reach to multicultural audiences including African Americans, Hispanics, Asians and more. Given multicultural audiences are on target to become the new majority in American by 2042, we understood this market will become more and more appealing to corporate companies looking to remain competitive in a rapidly changing marketplace.
With your company, Egami Consulting Group, what are some of the things you’ve accomplished and who have you worked with?
We have won several awards at Egami and are really honored and proud to have achieved this as the marketplace is cluttered and these awards demonstrate that our work stands out from the crowd.
We formed a strategic partnership with the world’s third largest communications firm, MSL Group, a Publicis Groupe global engagement firm and we serve as the diversity marketing partner to MSLGroup. Together we have delivered award-winning client work for leading brands such as P&G Bounty and My Black is Beautiful, Verizon Wireless, Hennessy, Heineken, Dasani, General Motors, Western Union and KFC.
I have also won several business awards including the coveted Black Enterprise Rising Star 40 and Under in 2012, and in 2010, I was recognized by the Network Journal 40 Under 40 Award for U.S. African-American achievers. DiversityBusiness.com has ranked Egami among the Top 500 Diversity Businesses for 2012. In 2009, as a testament to our collaborative prowess, Egami received an ADCOLOR Most Valuable Partnership (MVP) Award celebrating agencies that partner to deliver innovate solutions to their respective industries and community.
Egami has worked with a number of different brands including:
Procter & Gamble: My Black is Beautiful Campaign
Verizon Wireless: – VZW Small Business Empowerment Series – Black History Month Program – A Day in the Life of a History Maker – Hispanic Heritage Month – Dia De Tus Suenos.
Hennessy: The launch of Hennessy 44, a percentage of proceeds from sales creating scholarships with Thurgood Marshall.
Procter & Gamble: Bounty
– Make A Clean Difference Program
– Make a Messter-piece
– Teacher’s Wish List
The aforementioned campaigns only represent a few of the most recent campaigns.
What inspires you to get up in the morning to do what you do?
I’ve connected the dots between my personal purpose and profession, so each day I feel that my journey has meaning. I don’t look at my day to day as ‘work’ per se but instead I look at each day as my opportunity to serve the world with my skill set. Not only does that serve as my inspiration but it brings me joy and fulfillment.
You’ve written a book, “Profit With Purpose: A Marketers Guide to Deliver Purpose-Driven Marketing Campaigns to Multicultural Audiences.” What will people gain from reading this?
A) Whether a brand manager, a CEO, a student, or entrepreneur, each of us must feel that our lives have meaning in our day-to-day activities. Profit with a Purpose will help you discover that purpose whether for yourself, your company, your brand, or your marketing campaign. More than that, the book offers a framework for inspiring passion for your purpose within your organization, and strategies for communicating your purpose inspired message to the outside world—your current and future customers.
B) An understanding of how to place “Purpose” at the center of every business decision. The book explains how this approach will lead to better decisions, greater brand value, inspired and engaged employees, and customers who are loyal and become enthusiastic advocates. And here’s the best part—all of those benefits will lead to long-term profits and sustained share-holder value over time.
C) Profit With Purpose also serves as a guide for managers who are ready to begin the task of building their businesses around causes that extend beyond the products they manufacture or the services they provide. Profit with Purpose provides instructive examples of how brands such as P&G, Verizon, and Moet Hennessy have turned multicultural, purpose-driven, marketing strategies into winning campaigns, global brand awareness, and yes, tremendously profitable long-term growth. Teneshia guides you through the process of finding your cause and then forming the alliances you will need to share your passion and commitment with others.
D) An understanding of how to leverage purpose-driven marketing as an effective and important strategy for connecting with multicultural consumers, especially those who believe that your company doesn’t care specifically about them. Often, the best approach to bridging this gap is to identify a cause that matters to them, own it and embrace it, and then begin to share that passion.
This book identifies dozens of Urban Influencers—“celebrities gone good” and the causes they support.
Who is this book targeting?
As noted above, this book is a great read for a brand manager, a CEO, a student, entrepreneur and/or business executive.
What advice would you give someone who has an interest in the multicultural audience and what should they anticipate while embarking in this field?
Seek to really understand what matters to your consumers – their values, their passions, their hopes for the future. It’s through this understanding that you can best serve them. The key word here is ‘serve’ them not ‘sell’ to them. As noted in Profit with Purpose, the brands that are getting it right with multicultural consumers have adopted a serving mindset and are looking to enhance the lives of these consumers not just sell to them. This is the basic fundamental of purpose driven marketing.
When does the book launch and what plans do you have in conjunction with the book?
The book launched November 1, 2012 and is available at Amazon.com. In conjunction with the launch of the book, we are hosting an intimate awards dinner, “The Purpose Awards Dinner,” November 13th in New York. The dinner will salute brands, individuals, organizations and visionaries that are living on purpose and impacting the world.
What is Teneisha jJackson Warner and the Egami Consulting Group doing in the near future? What should we expect?
We are excited about the future, we will of course continue to deliver multicultural marketing strategies to current and new clients. We also have a number of new exciting programs in queue.
New signature project – The Dream Project?
In February 2013, EGAMI is launching a signature platform called “The Dream Project” designed to equip current and aspiring entrepreneurs, creatives, and those who dare to dream with tools to take their current idea and/or brand positioning to the next level. Dream Project will launch with a 2-day conference/symposium held in Atlanta – Feb. 2013.
I will start offering new keynote and workshop sessions. Including, Key Essentials to Purpose Driven Marketing workshops for brands along with a Discover Your Brand Purpose vision board creative session for current and aspiring entrepreneurs.
Is there anything else you’d like to say, any last words of wisdom?
I encourage all that are reading this…brand managers, students, entrepreneurs to connect the dots between your brand and/or your personal purpose and the needs of those that you looking are to serve – that intersect point is where magic happens!